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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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End of the line for Old Oak Common depot

Old Oak Common depot closed on December 8, with the final High Speed Train departing at 1642 (three minutes early) after being serviced.

Great Western Railway arranged for 43185 Great Western (which carries Intercity livery) and 43093 Old Oak Common HST Depot 1976-2018 (which carries a livery depicting the history of the West London depot) to power the HST, which formed the 1645 empty stock to London Paddington.

Staff have transferred to different sites, while maintenance of the Night Riviera Sleeper has transferred to Long Rock at Penzance, with servicing also carried out at Reading.

GWR’s High Speed Train fleet was the last to be maintained at the depot, although that has been vastly reduced over the past year following the introduction of the Intercity Express Train Class 800/802s.

The depot has been run down over a number of months, ahead of its demolition to make way for a High Speed 2 station that is due to open in seven years’ time.

Once the site has been cleared in the coming days, work will begin on the new station.

  • For the FULL story, read RAIL 868, out now.

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  • AndrewJG8918 - 20/12/2018 01:23

    Very sad to see Old Oak Common depot to disappear because of a new HS2 station is to be built on the former train maintenance depot that Class 43 HSTs were maintained when they first came into service 40 years ago. Aswell Heathrow Express & TfL Rail Class 332 & Class 360 and GWR Class 165 and Class 166 DMUs. Whilst GWR Class 387 Electrostar and TfL Rail/Elizabeth Line Class 345 Aventra will still be based at Old Oak Common aswell at Class 387 maintained at Reading depot and Class 345 maintained at Ilford depot.

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  • Martin Marsh - 22/03/2021 09:14

    It's a pity that we lose another good maintenance depot.But you can't stop progress.I used to work at Willesden TMD.I'm not sure about the future of that.

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