New train company to dump 150 brand new carriages worth £200 million : i NEWS

One of Britain’s busiest commuter rail networks is set to dump £200 million worth of newly built train carriages. On Monday the government announced that First MTR would take over South West Trains from August. The company is a consortium of Scottish bus giant FirstGroup and the state-owned Hong Kong metro. Now it says it will not hold on to new Desiro City trains being built in Germany. The government announced the 150 Siemens-built carriages amid much fanfare in 2014. They are due to arrive from next month. First/MTR will instead seek other new trains on a cheaper lease. The company said it would operate the Siemens carriages “for the first few years”. But the company wants to introduce “a homogeneous fleet for suburban routes by 2020”. First MTR will also return a fleet of newly-refurbished trains. These are currently being rolled out on the route from Waterloo to Reading. “Crazy world” Mick Cash, general secretary of the RMT rail union, said: “This is a cast-iron example of the crazy world of rail privatisation in the UK, and the government should be ordering an urgent investigation. No one even knows what is going to happen to the dumped rolling stock and what the cost of this fiasco is going to be.” Under Britain’s complex rail franchising system, trains are typically leased from separate rolling stock companies. It is not known whether government, First MTR or the train owners will suffer any financial losses. Transport writer Christian Wolmar told i: “This exemplifies why having a fragmented and privatised railway is a waste of money and resources. The railway is a natural integrated business where it’s best to have same people running stations, trains, track and infrastructure.”



  1. “No one even knows what is going to happen to the dumped rolling stock and what the cost of this fiasco is going to be”

    You can bet your life, the good old taxpayer will be picking up the bill.

    Liked by 2 people

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