London nationalizes a Virgin train line

London nationalizes a Virgin train line

The British government will temporarily take control of the service on the East Coast Main Line , from London to Edinburgh, when the current private operator, VTEC, fails to meet their payments, confirms Transport Minister Chris Grayling in the House of Commons. The conservative Grayling explains that the State will manage train services on this route in the east of England through "an operator of last resort", which will lay the foundations so that eventually the franchise can return to private management.

Grayling points out that Virgin Trains East Coast (VTEC) -participated by Stagecoach by 90% and Virgin Trains-, which took control of the line in 2014 for eight years , will stop operating on June 24, after having incurred financial difficulties . The Labor Party accuses the conservative government of "endorsing" this company, but Grayling assures that Virgin Trains East Coast must comply with "all its contractual obligations".

The Secretary General of the Transport union, Mick Cash , recalls that "this is the second time that the public sector has had to rescue the East Coast Main Line and, instead of being a temporary arrangement, it should be permanent." Mick Whelan , his counterpart in the Aslef drivers union, urges the minister to "re- nationalize the entire rail network ", as this is the third time in ten years that a private company has failed to manage this particular line, if well others also have a malfunction.

GNER was stripped of its East Coast Main Line franchise in 2007 , after its parent suffered financial difficulties, while National Express withdrew in 2009 . The Ministry of Transport then managed the line, which continues to provide benefits, for six years, until VTEC began to operate it. Grayling assures the Commons, despite his failed management, that Stagecoach and Virgin Trains will be able to bid again for future concessions , since no "malice or bad practices" have been detected. "Clearly, we should be more attentive to future financial commitments," he says.

The main east coast line (ECML) is a 632-kilometer railway line linking London and Edinburgh via Peterborough, Doncaster, Wakefield, Leeds, York, Darlington and Newcastle, electrified along the entire route. The service to Aberdeen and Inverness, north of Edinburgh, uses diesel trains; The main operator along the route is Virgin Trains East Coast.

The route forms a key artery of the eastern part of Great Britain and is flanked by the A1 road. It connects London, the south and east part of East Anglia, with Yorkshire, the northeastern regions and Scotland. It is also an important commuter service in the northern part of London and is very important for the economy of many areas of England and Scotland. It also manages rail services to foreign countries, travelers and locals, as well as freight transport.

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