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As lockdown restrictions ease and we start to consider travelling again, the future of cross-Channel operator Eurostar remains uncertain.
Eurostar is seeking financial support from the UK Government, citing higher access charges here as a reason.
The French Government has pledged to provide support for the operator, while £200 million has been provided by one of its shareholders, Caisse de Dépôt et Placement du Québec (CDPQ) and Hermes Infrastructure.
Registered in the UK and supporting 3,000 jobs either with the business or in the supply chain, the company is, however, 55% owned by SNCF (French state rail), 40% by CDPQ/Hermes and 5% by SNCB (Belgian state railways).
So: Should the UK Government provide financial assistance to Eurostar?

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Worcestershire Parkway approved

Work is expected to start on the new £22 million Worcestershire Parkway station next spring, with the facility due to open in autumn 2017.

Located close to Junction 7 of the M5 near Norton, the station will have a single platform on the Worcester to London line and two platforms on the Birmingham to Bristol line. The station building will include a booking office, toilets and shop, and there will be a 500-space car park, bus stops, a taxi rank and a passenger drop-off area.

Planning permission was granted by Worcestershire County Council’s Planning Committee on August 25.

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  • Noam - 11/09/2015 09:36

    Why can't they just start it now? Plans, even in their latest form, have been drawn up for months.

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    • Philip Poole - 02/02/2018 21:04

      The local bus service from Worcester through Norton has been improved greatly in anticipation, hourly services most days.

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  • Andrewjgwilt1989 - 11/09/2015 18:02

    The new train station couldd also have bus links to villages close by to the new train station as well Norton and South Worcester area with the M5 Motorway is nearby as the M5 is the viral route that links from M6 & Birmingham to M50, M4, Bristol, Weston-Super-Mare and Exeter as it joins with the A30 that heads south to Truro & Penzance.

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  • Geoff Kerr - 06/10/2015 13:48

    The parkway concept was an excellent idea in 1985 when there were fewer trains on all lines though Worcester. Ashchurch station had not then been reopened, while Bromsgrove had a very sparse service. A new two-hourly Birmingham - Cardiff service was running, but via Kidderminster. The Worcester southern/eastern link roads had not been built. Everything is now very different, with more trains and higher speeds. Although a parkway station would undoubtedly generate some new custom, it is also likely to abstract passengers from others nearby, in particular Ashchurch, Shrub Hill and Foregate Street, Pershore, Droitwich, Malvern Link and Great Malvern. Rather than reduce car usage, people will be tempted to drive to the new station, thus increasing congestion around Worcester on local roads. There seems to be little provision for highway or bus service improvements in the plans, yet a station on a green field site is likely to lead to demands for out-of-town development, which Councils often find hard to resist. But the greatest concern is that there seems to be no agreement with either the DfT or any train operating company actually to provide a train service at the station. Cross Country refuses to stop additional services at Ashchurch or Bromsgrove, citing pathing difficulties north of Kings Norton as the main problem, which will only become worse when the electric suburban service is extended to Bromsgrove. And what of Shrub Hill - will it close? Great Western will not want to stop its London trains three times in the Worcester area.

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