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Railhub Archive
2000-09-01 DET-002
Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions


Rising rail investment signals benefits for passengers

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Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions

Rising rail investment signals benefits for passengers

1 September 2000
source Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions
type Press release

note News Release 573

Rail passengers are set to benefit from increasing levels of investment as extra money brings improved services and modern, safe rolling stock on line.

Investment figures contained in the latest Bulletin of Rail Statistics published today, show rail investment for 1999/2000 has topped 2.2 billion (2,182 million in 1998/99 prices). Welcoming the figures, Minister for Transport Lord Macdonald said investment in the rail industry was very strong and comparable to the rail heyday in the late 1950s.

He added:

"This level of investment from the rail companies is excellent news for rail passengers. They will feel the benefits as we deliver on our transport plans for a modern rail network with improved services and safer more comfortable rolling stock. According to these provisional figures investment has grown 12 per cent since 1998/99 though we expect that final figures for 1999/2000 will show that it has grown considerably more.

"This investment is taking place against the background of our recently published 180 billion Ten Year Plan for Transport which mapped out 60 billion of public-private investment for the railways up to 2010. This incorporates money from the rail industry and the Government for investment in improving the rail services and major capital projects such as the West Coast Mainline upgrade and the completion of the Channel Tunnel Rail Link."
Lord Macdonald said the Government has made real progress in turning the rail industry around but admitted the companies had more to do to provide the kind of rail service passengers expect and deserve. He added:

"Following the hasty privatisation process the rail industry was left fragmented and deprived of investment. This Government has set about re-invigorating the railways and has worked in partnership with the industry to put the interests of passengers at the forefront of our rail renaissance. Through a process of partnership and tough new standards and franchise agreements we have obtained greater commitment and investment from the rail companies in the interests of the travelling public.

"Last month we saw examples of just how this is happening in practice when Chiltern Trains became the first rail operator to renew its franchise and sign up to a 370 million investment programme of which 150 million is with Railtrack. At the same time Midland Mainline also pledged a further 238 million of investment in return for a two year extension to their current ten year franchise."


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Railhub Archive ::: 2000-09-01 DET-002


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