Before the sectorisation of BR in 1982 the system was split into regions: those operating around London were London Midland Region (Marylebone, Euston, St Pancras and Broad Street), Southern Region (Waterloo, Victoria, Charing Cross, Holborn Viaduct, Cannon Street and London Bridge), Western Region (Paddington) and Eastern Region (King's Cross, Moorgate, Broad Street, Liverpool Street and Fenchurch Street). This was perceived to be a source of inefficiency, so sectorisation reorganised everything into a single organisation covering commuter services. At the same time InterCity took over express services and Regional Railways took over regional services.
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The Class 37 became a familiar sight in many parts of the British Rail network, for example, forming the main motive power for Inter-City services in East Anglia, within Scotland, and so on. They were relatively rarely seen on the more 'glamorous' main line expresses, but on secondary and inter-regional services they performed well for many years.
In the 1980s many locomotives were refurbished, which has meant the Class 37 fleet is one of the longest surviving classes on British railways. However, the introduction of new Class 66 locomotives has meant many locomotives have been withdrawn or scrapped. The last few British examples are operated by EWS and Direct Rail Services, who retain small fleets, with several examples also operated by spot-hire companies. However, second-hand Class 37s have also proved popular in the export market, with some examples currently operating in Spain and France (serving the construction of these countries' high-speed railway networks).