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Railhub Archive
2000-02-15 SRA-001
Shadow Strategic Rail Authority


Proposals invited for second round of franchise replacement

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Shadow Strategic Rail Authority

Proposals invited for second round of franchise replacement

15 February 2000
source Shadow Strategic Rail Authority
type Press release

Substantial Response to Second Round of Franchise Replacement

The Shadow Strategic Rail Authority has received 36 submissions from 18 substantial groups in response to its invitation for proposals to improve passenger rail services in several key strategic areas of interest across the network; from London to the Midlands, Wales and the North West.

The parties have lodged submissions covering all, one or a combination of the strategic areas outlined by the Authority as candidates for the second and subsequent batches of franchise replacement.

Mike Grant, Chief Executive of the SSRA, said:
"The number of submissions we have received for the second tranche is a
good indication of a high level of interest in the new, long term franchises we
are offering. Interest has come from both established operators and
companies currently not involved in British rail franchising.
"We are currently examining the possibilities arising from all these
submissions, and will be announcing the nature and shape of the next
franchises for which we will be inviting proposals. We are not constrained by
the existing franchise geography - rather we shall be seeking to create
franchises that best serve the needs of the passenger."
After the franchise areas have been announced, there will be a short period of
pre-qualification for interested parties. The SSRA will then give prequalified
parties 60 days to prepare detailed proposals, before a shortlist is drawn up
for negotiation. It is expected that the new franchises will be awarded in the

Notes to Editors
1. In December 1999, the SSRA invited existing and would be operators to
submit innovative proposals to run improved passenger rail services covering
several strategically selected franchise areas, namely:
Planning and implementing the Thameslink 2000 network of services
North, South and through central London.
Improving London commuter services and easing capacity constraints
at Waterloo, Liverpool Street and Paddington.
Relieving regional capacity bottlenecks around Birmingham and
Introducing new services around London making use of the East, North
and West London lines.
Serving the interests of Wales and the North West more effectively
Recognising the value of inter urban trans -Pennine services
2. If no suitable replacement franchises can be agreed, existing franchisees
retain their contractual rights as long as they do not default on their
obligations, or until alternative arrangements are agreed with the Franchising
3. The franchises currently held by Chiltern, Connex South Central and Great
North Eastern Railway are being replaced in the first tranche. Detailed
proposals are due from prequalified counterparties by February 21.

Railhub Archive ::: 2000-02-15 SRA-001


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