Wednesday, April 10, 2019

So farewell then East Midlands Trains

The transport news of the day is that the East Midlands rail franchise is to change hands.

From 18 August trains on the St Pancras main line will be run by Abellio instead of Stagecoach, which has operated the service for years under the name East Midlands Trains.

Business Traveller explains why:
The reason involves the funding of railway pension funds, and one assumes that Abellio has given the DfT assurance in this regard.
Two quick points.

First, for all Abellio's talk of experimenting with hydrogen fuel cell trains, it remains the case that the whole of this line needs to be electrified.

The Leicester Mercury quotes the policy director of East Midlands Chamber as saying:
"We will continue ... to press the Department for Transport for full electrification of the Midland Main Line so that we can enjoy lighter, cleaner, greener trains and closer integration with HS2 along the route."
Second, Arbellio is owned by the nationalised Dutch railways.

So it remains the case that the Conservatives are happy for government to run Britain's railways, just so long as it's not the British government.

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