Close Close

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

GB Railfreight wants new vehicles for HS2 contracts

GB Railfreight is on the lookout for new locomotives and wagons, as it prepares to bid for HS2 haulage contracts. 

GBRf Managing Director John Smith said it made sense that the operator owns its assets outright where possible, rather than leasing them. 

Should GB Railfreight win deals to support HS2 contracts, there is the prospect of using up to 16 trains per day just to move products and materials away from construction sites. These are likely to start in 2019. 

Smith confirmed to RAIL that he was interested in 20 Class 60s that have been made available for sale by DB Cargo. He has also spoken with Stadler regarding dual-mode Class 88s, although these would adhere to a Co-Co design rather than the current Bo-Bo design. 

Smith also confirmed that ideally he would like more Class 66s, and said that there is a secondary leasing market for the class. 

The operator is also to take delivery of new wagons from Romania from next month. These will support biomass operations from a new plant at Lynemouth. 

GBRf is also modifying more coal wagons, at a cost of around £18,000 per vehicle, for use in the aggregates markets. 

  • John Smith held a media briefing earlier this month. To read what the GB Railfreight Managing Director said about freight, HS2, new flows and why the UK needs to invest in rail, read RAIL 833, published on August 16.

Comment as guest

Login  /  Register


No comments have been made yet.

RAIL is Britain's market leading modern railway magazine.

Download the app

Related content