London Midland loses rail franchise

Paterniano Del Favero
Agosto 10, 2017

Trains covered under the franchise includes services across the West Midlands as well as trains from London Euston to Crewe and from Liverpool to Birmingham.

Govia, in which Go-Ahead holds a 65% stake in with the remaining 35% held by Keolis, has operated the West Midlands franchise since 2007.

"I believe this deal will help create a railway that cannot only improve people's journeys but keep our economy growing and we look forward to working with West Midlands Trains in making that happen".

"During the months ahead we will continue to work with West Midlands Trains Ltd, the DfT and all our stakeholders to ensure a smooth transition into the new franchise".

Rail company Go-Ahead, the operator of the beleaguered Southern network, has lost its bid for the West Midlands rail franchise to a rival offer pledging hundreds of new carriages and free Wi-Fi. There will be 20,000 extra seats for rush hour passengers in Birmingham, and 10,000 for people in London.

Smart ticketing and live passenger information will also be rolled out under the deal, as part of reforms that it is hoped will improve journeys for passengers.

Transport Secretary Chris Grayling said it was "great news" for passengers.

"This shows we are delivering on our commitment to build a railway that works for everyone".

"We will be investing almost £1bn into the network, delivering new trains, better stations and a whole host of other benefits for passengers".

"We want to see a new golden era for our local trains and today's announcement is an important step towards that", he said.

It is the first time that West Midlands authorities have had such a level of influence in setting out what a train company needs to deliver for local passengers.

"I believe the deal secured today will help create a railway that cannot only improve people's journeys but keep our economy growing, and we look forward to working with West Midlands Trains in making that happen".

Govia said it was "disappointed" after it missed out to West Midlands Trains, a joint venture between Dutch and Japanese companies. The West Midlands network of trains and infrastructure will be run by a local team.

It will run until March 2026.

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