Virgin Trains loses West Coast Mainline franchise

Published on Wednesday, 15 August 2012 10:56
Posted by Scott Buckler

Virgin Rail has lost its bid to continue running the West Coast Mainline and will be replaced by the UK's largest rail operator, FirstGroup

FirstGroup said it would "offer substantial improvements in the quality and frequency of services".

Sir Richard Branson said Virgin's loss of the franchise was "very disappointing news".

Unions and rail campaigners have argued jobs will be cut, fares will rise and catering services will be cut back.

FirstGroup already operates a number of rail routes including Great Western and ScotRail.

The company, under the name First West Coast Limited, will take over the franchise from 9 December and is due to to operate the service until 2026.

Source: ©BBC News

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