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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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National Rail Awards 2018: STATION OF THE YEAR (MEDIUM) Winner: Hexham – Northern

Hexham station in Northumberland is located on the Tyne Valley Line, running from Newcastle upon Tyne to Carlisle. Last year, the station served around 344,000 passengers, an increase of 12,000 on the previous year.

The station dates from 1835, making it one of the oldest purpose-built stations in the world. It now has an hourly Northern service on weekdays to Carlisle and two trains per hour to Newcastle. Hexham’s floral displays have won several awards from the Britain in Bloom scheme.

The judges said that Hexham has turned itself into a railhead of the Hadrian Wall area. The station feels both part of the town and part of regional tourism. It is smartly presented and well integrated into the community. There is a tourism office as well as taxis, buses and bicycle hire. Staff greet each arriving train and help passengers on their way.

  • For FULL coverage of the National Rail Awards, read RAIL 862, published on September 26, and available digitally on Android, iPad and Kindle on September 22.

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