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Government agrees to consult on franchises

Former campaigner's picture

17 June 2010: After our objections to proposals on rail franchising policy, which would offer train companies a financial incentive to cut services, the Department of Transport has finally agreed to a consultation.

Along with 50 other organisations, we've been asking the government to hold a formal, public consultation that would allow members of the public to have their say on rail services - not just those of the industry, as the government had previously argued.

We're worried that more flexibility in the rules around rail franchising would allow socially neccessary (but perhaps not profitable) services to be cut to make way for more lucrative routes.

In a statement issued today, the Minister of State for Transport announced that the Department will 'shortly begin a consultation exercise on the future of rail franchising policy'.

That's the first battle won, but we're not stopping yet: we will continue to put pressure on the government through the consultation process to ensure that the needs of the public aren't forgotten.

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