Friday, 27 July 2012

Half an inkling of backdown as government asks rail bidders to price up current service

It looks like the Government has given a modicum of hope that rail services to London won't be cut by a third. This follows intervention by three of Cornwall's MPs and a visit to London by the head of Cornwall's LEP and the council leader.

In tender documents sent out to potential bidders, the government had suggested that the current nine services each way each day between Penzance and London could be cut to just six. This at a time when huge investment is taking place to electrify large sections of track elsewhere in the UK.

But three Cornish MPs - Andrew George, Dan Rogerson and  George Eustice - went to lobby the minister along with Chris Pomfret, Chair of the LEP, and Council Leader Alec Robertson. Now the bidders have been asked to price two alternatives - retaining the current level of service alongside the cut to six trains a day.

The final decision won't be made for a while and we need to keep the lobbying up. Cornwall Council produced a very good original submission on the future of our local rail network. It now looks certain that we won't get the improvement we wanted but there is a small hope that we can avoid significant losses.

No comments: