Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland Labour MP, Tom Blenkinsop, made these comments today (19th August 2014) after the names of the short-listed bidders for the Northern Rail franchises were announced by the Department for Transport.
“It is a huge blow for local services that the selected bidders are almost 100% foreign owned. We have Arriva which is German owned; Govia where the largest shareholder is French; and Abelio based in the Netherlands.
“This means that every pound handed over to the conductor on the train from Saltburn to Middlesbrough and Darlington will be going to boost the profits of companies not domiciled in the UK.
“It’s not right that the future of our rail network in the North is being decided by Coalition Ministers and civil servants in London. I urge the Government to review this decision with the aim that the North East – where the railway world was born – gets an operating system fit for purpose and kick-starts a transformation in our local rail services, not more of the same.”