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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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First Merseyrail Class 777 bodyshells complete

The first Merseyrail Class 777 electric multiple units have entered the final assembly phase ahead of delivery to the UK next year.

The first bodyshells have been moved from Stadler’s Szolnok facility in Hungary, to its Altenrhein facility in Switzerland.

Stadler says the first train will be complete in early-2019 before testing begins.

There they will be fitted with bogies, equipment cases, piping, wiring, flooring, windows, seats and other internal fixtures.

From March next year this work will also take place in Siedlce, Poland. For the first six ‘777s’, a single bodyshell will be sent to Switzerland each week. After that, four bodyshells per week will be sent until the process is finished. Bodies for the first four EMUs will go to Altenrhein. The fifth set will go to Siedlce. After that, they will alternate between the two locations.

Work carried out in Hungary includes machining, welding, sandblasting and anti-corrosion protection, as well as painting.

The first ‘777’ will begin type-testing on the Merseyrail network in the summer and autumn of 2019.

  • For the FULL story, read RAIL 863, published on October 10, and available on Android, iPad and Kindle from October 6.

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  • AndrewJG8918 - 01/10/2018 09:23

    I think Stadler could benefit from manufacturing new trains if they were to build a new train manufacturing plant in the UK and to continue with manufacturing new trains in the UK. Including the Class 777, Class 745, Class 755 and new trains for South Wales.

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  • AndrewJG8918 - 01/10/2018 23:22

    Stadler are probably the best train manufacturing company in Europe that have built trains for European Countries that want better railways with frequent services and better reliable trains.

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