Virgin Rail gets troubled west coast for 2 more years
Virgin Rail are going to be running the west coast mainline for a further 23 months, say the government who haven't ballsed up the admin of our railways AT ALL this year.
Richard Branson's firm will run the London to Glasgow trains 'til 9th November 2014, rather than that whole pig's ear that the transport secretary sorted when FirstGroup was awarded the line in October.
Basically, Virgin will have the service while the government works out another long-term franchise to be awarded.
Transport Sec, Patrick McLoughlin said: "We are determined to ensure not only that passengers continue to experience the same levels of service they have in the past, but that services improve. There will be a new hourly service linking Glasgow and London and we will also work with Virgin Trains to explore other service improvements."
He continued: "I am also extremely pleased that passengers will benefit from up to 28,000 more seats daily thanks to the delivery of 106 new Pendolino carriages on to the west coast line, which has happened on budget and ahead of schedule."
Of course, all anyone can hear is the hoohah surrounding the FirstGroup big, which Branson called "insane" and resulted in three DfT officials getting suspended and everyone losing all faith in the way things are run. There's also going to be an independent report into this fiasco.