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Train driver jobs attract thousands of applications

Train driver jobs attract thousands of applications

Published at 3:45pm 19th October 2016. (Updated at 3:48pm 19th October 2016)

More than 15,000 people have applied for just 78 jobs driving Virgin's new fleet of trains on the East Coast route.

It follows the biggest recruitment drive since the 1980s and equates to nearly 200 applications per post.

The company's Azuma trains will be launched in 2018 and their drivers will work from depots between London and Edinburgh.

They're due to start a year-long development programme in January.

A spokesperson for Virgin Trains said: "We have received a huge amount of interest in this fantastic opportunity at Virgin Trains on its East Coast route. We're really excited that so many people want to come and join our fabulous company!

"The Talent team are working hard to process and update all of the applications we received. Those who have been successful in getting through the first stages of the process will be invited to attend a selection day which will include a variety of assessments and exercises that will bring the best talent into our business."

Over the course of a year, trainees will take part in a mixture of classroom-based and on-the-job learning at different locations along the route.

Modules range from track safety, understanding operational route risks and emergency situations to getting to know the traction they will be driving.

New recruits also go through rigorous 'immersive' practical learning, including driving Virgin Trains' state-of-the-art simulator to familiarise themselves with the cab and pick up train handling experience.

The 65 Azuma trains, which are being built in the UK by Hitachi, will be amongst the most advanced trains on the rail network.