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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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Industry must sell itself better

Rail Minister Claire Perry quoted a recent Comment by RAIL Managing Editor and Events Director Nigel Harris, when telling the industry it needs to sell itself better.

She told NRC delegates: “As Nigel Harris said in a recent editorial in RAIL magazine, the disparity between the public’s perceptions and the railway’s achievements is largely down to a failure of industry public relations.”

She elaborated: “And I don’t mean having some flashy press releases, I mean actually getting out there and celebrating what we do every day - thinking like the customers, making sure that they really see the benefits of what actually is happening."

  • For more on Perry's speech, and National Rail Conference coverage, read RAIL 788, published on November 25. 

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