Wednesday 10 August 2022

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The Department for Transport has decided to abandon the franchising system in England.

The franchise on this page ceased to exist on normal commercial terms on 23 March 2020, and was replaced by an Emergency Measures Agreement, which guaranteed an income to operators and removed commercial risk.

From 20 September 2020 until some time in 2022 Emergency Recovery Measures Agreements (ERMAs) replaced the original EMAs, slightly reducing the fixed fees paid to operators but otherwise continuing the protection from commercial risk.

Replacement contracts of a new type may be announced later on.

(In the case of Scottish franchises, the Scottish Government announced on 18 September an extension of its EMAs from 20 September 2020 to January 2021, pending further discussions.)

TransPennine Express

A replacement franchise covering the same service area as the previous contract, but now owned only by FirstGroup. The franchise includes new rolling stock. The end date may be extended by up to 26 reporting periods (104 weeks).

start date
1 April 2016
end date
1 April 2023

owned by
FirstGroup plc

legal title
First Trans Pennine Express Ltd

service area
Windermere/Barrow/Liverpool-Manchester-Leeds-York/Scarborough-Newcastle-Sunderland; Manchester-Sheffield-Grimsby-Cleethorpes; Manchester Airport-Blackpool North; Manchester-Glasgow/Edinburgh; Liverpool-Glasgow (from December 2018)

First TransPennine Express

to be replaced by


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