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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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FTPE launches pioneer assistance initiative

First TransPennine Express is rolling out an initiative to help passengers with disabilities, personal problems or learning difficulties (such as autism or dyslexia).

Blue Assist is intended to give those passengers effective and suitable assistance, allowing them to feel at ease and not judged when they travel - for example, if they don’t understand that they have to show their ticket, or if they’ve had a bad personal experience in the morning and forgotten to buy a ticket on the way.

The initiative is the first of its kind on the railway. FTPE has partnered with the Blue Assist charity to provide a card that passengers can collect from stations or on board trains, and write on their specific needs.

All FTPE’s 1,200 staff have been trained and briefed to recognise the card and to support those passengers effectively.

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