Train Movements

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The Train Movements feed contains data from Network Rail's TRUST system. This reports on the progress of trains along their journey.

There's a fuller description of the process available.

Because of the way TRUST works not every location will generate a report. If you want fine grain reporting then you would need to look at processing data from the TD feed and reporting based on that, or look at the Darwin Push Port data. Darwin will generally capture more, better quality, and ad-hoc data as its part of the bigger customer information system - TRUST is an internal reporting tool and can be updated in 'slow time' meaning data can change or be late being input. A good example is cancelled services - they may be input to Darwin via another source (Darwin Workstation, Tyrell, CIS) leading to a cancellation, the actual TRUST cancellation may not come through till much later.

TRUST data may also be updated/amended 'after the fact' so a delay which is input manually from TRUST DA may overwrite a previous automatic report and that could happen several days later. TRUST should always be historically correct.

TRUST does not provide predictions, it only reports on events that have happened. TRUST reports in 30 second intervals, and rounds to whole minutes. - A train reporting 1 minute early or late may only be 31 seconds early or late in reality.

Message Topics

Train movement messages are available through a single topic, TRAIN_MVT_ALL_TOC. Historically, they were available on a per-operator feed, a freight operator feed, and a 'general' feed including Change of Identity messages. These topics are listed here for historical reasons:

Historical topic name Description
TRAIN_MVT_XX_TOC Train movement messages for XX TOC. These codes are business codes on the TOC Codes page
TRAIN_MVT_ALL_TOC All train operating companies
TRAIN_MVT_FREIGHT All non-passenger train operating company movements
TRAIN_MVT_GENERAL Change of Identity messages for freight trains

Message types

The feed contains eight message types, all in JSON format:

Type Description
0001 Train Activation
0002 Train Cancellation
0003 Train Movement
0004 Unidentified Train (not used in production)
0005 Train Reinstatement
0006 Change of Origin
0007 Change of Identity
0008 Change of Location


Each message is represented as a JSON hash with two keys - 'header' and 'body'. Zero or more of these messages is sent out in a JSON list, either every five seconds or when there are 32 messages to be sent. It is perfectly legitimate to receive an empty array.

All timestamp values are in milliseconds since the UNIX epoch. But it appears that in certain fields this is incorrect during British Summer Time (UK DST) and is actually one hour in the future. You will need to subtract one hour in order for the times to be valid. This is known to affect the following fields:

  • gbtt_timestamp
  • planned_timestamp
  • actual_timestamp
  • canx_timestamp
  • dep_timestamp
  • orig_loc_timestamp

Weekly Planned Outage

Each week there is a short planned outage in the TRUST feeds, which normally takes place in the early hours of Sunday morning (when very few trains are running). Usually the outage occurs at some point between 0200 and 0215 and lasts for approximately 5 minutes. Any missed messages during the outage period are sent by the feed once it resumes.

Examples and source code

Network Rail Open Data Feeds
Data Feeds About the Feeds Account States Durable Subscriptions Example Code ( PHP / C# / Java / Ruby / Node.js) • Advanced UsesFAQ Release Notes
Train Movements Train Movements Feed Train Activation Train Cancellation Train Movement Train Reinstatement Change of Origin Change of Identity Change of Location TSPEED Field Planned Cancellations Cancellation Codes
TD TD Feed C-Class Messages S-Class Messages Train Describers TD Berths
TSR TSR Feed Route Codes
SCHEDULE SCHEDULE Feed TIPLOC Records Schedule and Location Records Association Records CIF Codes How Scheduling Works Allowances
Reference Data Reference Data Feed TOC Codes CIF Codes Delay Attribution Codes Identifying Locations (STANOX, TIPLOC, NLC and 3-Alpha Codes) STANOX Geographical Areas Train Planning data