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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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Network Rail teams up with universities on research

Network Rail is to invest a minimum of £10 million on working with universities to boost research and development.

It is agreeing eight framework contracts with the universities of Birmingham, Heriot Watt, Huddersfield, Loughborough, Newcastle, Nottingham, Sheffield and Southampton.

The announcement was made on September 27, when NR Chief Executive Andrew Haines opened the National Infrastructure Laboratory (NIL) at the University of Southampton.

“We know that, above all, passengers want a reliable railway and to be looked after when things don’t go to plan,” said Haines.

“Our railway is growing, but it’s congested and ageing, and we’re also dealing with more frequent incidents of extreme weather. We quickly need ideas and technology to help us meet these challenges.

“Universities are a critical source of innovation, and a stronger relationship allows us to come up with faster, better solutions than we could ever do without their support.”

  • For the FULL story, read RAIL 889, published on October 9, and available digitally on Android, iPad and Kindle from October 5.



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