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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?

View the poll

UKRL offers re-engineered ‘56s’ as a heavy haul solution

Class 56s could be re-engineered with new power units as a cost-effective solution to the freight industry’s need for heavy haul locomotives.

UK Rail Leasing aims to re-engineer one of its 15 Type 5s, and says a locomotive could be ready by the end of 2017. The Leicester company says it has identified as many as seven operators (home and abroad) that may require such locomotives.

UKRL Head of Engineering Alan Lee told RAIL: “I’m not making the decisions, I want the freight companies that may be interested strategically in repowering as an option to actually help define what the end product will be. There’s a great opportunity there for freight to have a real hand in what it looks like."

  • For much more on this, read RAIL 793, published on February 3.
  • For an in-depth analysis into these plans, read RAIL 794, published on February 17.

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  • FrankH - 01/02/2016 23:13

    It seems to be the way forward in this country until the larger hauliers decide to invest in electric locos for freight.

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  • Sam brown - 02/02/2016 22:48

    What will they haul ? Fresh air ? Coal is declining ,steel is in trouble. The only possible market is Europe

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    • FrankH - 03/02/2016 22:54

      There must be something otherwise they wouldn't be thinking about it.

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  • PaulZA - 08/02/2016 14:31

    Fit them with ETH capilibity and use them to haul redundant mk3's on secondary lines.....

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