CROSSRAIL trains are being tested from Southend to London - raising hopes that in future they could run to and from the town on a regular basis.

The new Crossrail trains have been spotted at Southend Victoria and Southend Airport stations.

Transport for London and Crossrail confirmed that trains, which are set to be used on the route from Liverpool Street to Shenfield, are being tested on the Southend line.

The first of the new trains has entered passenger service on the TFL Rail route between Liverpool Street and Shenfield, giving a glimpse of the new railway to come.

Each train has to undergo extensive testing before progressively being introduced onto the network.

In this case, Southend Victoria was the ideal location for the new Class 345 trains to have tests and training carried out.

The arrival of the Crossrail trains has generated plenty of excitement.

Glyn Jones, chief executive of Southend Airport, said he was content with the current rail system that serves the airport, but said he was always keen to find ways to improve.

He said: “The existing service we have in place is actually very good.

“We have the highest number of trains per hour coming in than any other airport and it only takes 53 minutes to get to Liverpool Street.

“That said, we always like things to be better.

“We have 28 per cent of our passengers coming to the airport via rail as a result of 40 per cent in passenger growth.

“Therefore we are always keen to see rail use go up.”

Train line services, c2c and Greater Anglia, have come under growing scrutiny for their poor service for trains to and from London.

Passengers have grown increasingly aggravated with the number of delays and cancellations they have had to face.

These have mainly either been due to weather conditions affecting the train line or signalling issues.

The latest of these delays was last Thursday, when passengers’ journey was disrupted by signalling faults at Southend Central.

The new Elizabeth Line trains will gradually be introduced between Shenfield and Liverpool Street.

The first of these successfully ran on June 22.

From December 2019, when the Crossrail route fully opens, passengers will be able to travel through central London without having to change trains.

The Elizabeth Line will not involve any changes to the fast services into Liverpool Street from Southend, Southminster, Chelmsford and beyond, some of which call at Shenfield.