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National Express East Coast - Railway franchise to be withdrawn

Community Veteran
Posts: 3,486
Registered: 02-10-2008

National Express East Coast - Railway franchise to be withdrawn

The government says it intends to take the East Coast rail service, run by National Express, into state ownership.
"The troubled rail franchise, which is expected to have lost £20m in the first half of the year, is suffering from falling passenger numbers. "
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/8127851.stm
Any other users of the East Coast here.
I was a very regular user in GNER's days - and they were usually excellent in my experince.
Since Nation Express took over things have gone steadily downhill.
I'm actually quite pleased that the government have now bowed to NE pressure - they signed up for the contract and the whole idea of a commercial franchise is that the company takes a commercial risk like any other business.
And at least we now have an excellent Secretary of State for Transport in Lord Adonis - who actually understands railways.
5 REPLIES
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,251
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Registered: 15-06-2007

Re: National Express East Coast - Railway franchise to be withdrawn

Then again I found LNER were excellent  Grin
Community Veteran
Posts: 3,486
Registered: 02-10-2008

Re: National Express East Coast - Railway franchise to be withdrawn

Yes  - Jim - you may remember LNER - I don't :-)
but what happened in 1948 - the railway companies were struggling financially - trying to rebuild after long years of war etc., and had to be bailed out by the government.
I've neither vehemently in favour of re-nationalisation or the status quo - it's just that John Majors government botched the privatisation rushing it through because they knew they would loose the election, and then successive Labour governments have meddled and still haven't got it right.
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,251
Thanks: 937
Fixes: 56
Registered: 15-06-2007

Re: National Express East Coast - Railway franchise to be withdrawn

Agree 100% with the botched privatisation being the root cause of the current problems
Community Veteran
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Registered: 05-04-2007

Re: National Express East Coast - Railway franchise to be withdrawn

Quote from: mal0z
Any other users of the East Coast here.
I was a very regular user in GNER's days - and they were usually excellent in my experince.

I agree about GNER. I don't think I've actually used NXEC (although their sister company, NXEA, is my local train operator so I'm always using them), but I did use GNER a few times and they always seemed good... particularly I remember when I travelled on some cheap first class tickets to Edinburgh once and the service was amazing - the staff were constantly walking around offering free drinks, biscuits, taking orders for the buffet; the seats/tables had been prepared really nicely with china all laid out ready when boarding the train... it was proper first class, rather than simply being a more expensive standard class to give you a better chance of a seat (for a much higher price) that most TOCs see it as these days.
Community Veteran
Posts: 3,486
Registered: 02-10-2008

Re: National Express East Coast - Railway franchise to be withdrawn

To be fair - NXEA won awards for their restaurant services - and several railway journalists were highly complimentary.
But now these restaurant services seem to have been either shut down or severely curtailed.