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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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Three bidders for West Midlands franchise

London Midland Class 172s at Birmingham Moor Street on March 26 2015. RICHARD CLINNICK.

Department for Transport today (April 7) announced three shortlisted bidders for the West Midlands franchise.

The shortlisted bidders are:

  • London and West Midlands Railway Limited, a subsidiary of Govia Limited (a joint venture between Keolis and Go-Ahead Group);
  • West Midlands Trains Limited, currently a wholly owned subsidiary of Abellio Transport Group Limited with East Japan Railway Company (known as JR East) and Mitsui & Co Ltd as minority partners;
  • MTR Corporation (West Midlands) Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of MTR Corporation (UK) Limited.

The contract award is expected to be made in June 2017 ahead of the new deal starting in October 2017.

Rail Minister Claire Perry said: ““The West Midlands franchise serves both commuters and long distance passengers and we are confident these companies will create high quality bids that can deliver better journeys for all.

 “Today’s announcement marks a key step forward in giving passengers improved services across the region and beyond.”

  • For more on this, read RAIL 799, published on April 27.

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  • Andrewjgwilt1989 - 08/04/2016 00:16

    I think it be between Abellio, MTR and Arriva on who is to win the franchise will keep London Midland as it is but with a new train company taking charge.

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