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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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Cancellations “worst since records began”

Southern 377118 and 377446 at Clapham Junction on January 3 2014. RICHARD CLINNICK.

Nearly three in ten Govia Thameslink Railway services failed to reach their destination on time between June 26 and July 23, according to figures from the Office of Rail and Road.

GTR was by far the worst performing operator in that period. The figure was also the highest recorded since current statistics started in 2004.

The period covered strike action by guards in the RMT union. It also included weeks of disruption caused by high levels of sickness among train crew, which both GTR and the Government claimed amounted to unofficial strike action.

Some 70.4% of GTR services arrived within five minutes of the scheduled time. The next worst operator was Virgin Trains East Coast (82.2% of trains on time). The average for England and Wales was 87.1%.

From July 11 the figure is based on performance relative to GTR’s emergency timetable, not the full schedule.

A spokesman said: “We fully recognise that these figures are unacceptable. It was another very challenging period for GTR. Punctuality performance was affected in the main by continuing train crew availability issues and infrastructure problems.”

  • For more on the Southern situation, read RAIL 810, published on September 28.
  • For more on the punctuality figures, read RAIL 810, published on September 28.

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  • Andrewjgwilt1989 - 20/09/2016 00:53

    Oh dear. Its still not been a good year for Southern Railway and GTR. Always hit by so many problems they have faced with including strikes. National Express c2c struggled before but now they have improved and they were voted the best "Punctual" train operator in South Essex just before National Express extended the Essex Thameside franchise to 2029 (15 years). But Southern do need a lot of improvement and that means losing some of their suburban services in South London to TfL (Transport for London) to provide better services for South London with TfL to brand the South London services as part of TfL London Overground or TfL Rail.

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