All change: These photos show York station preparing for the big shake-up this weekend

21 Jun 2018 @ 7.51 pm
| Transport

York station is adopting its new livery ahead of yet another rail shake up this weekend.

This Sunday (June 24) the east coast main line service will be taken back into public control, a little over three years after Virgin Trains East Coast started running it.

The new service will be rebranded as the London and North Eastern Railway (LNER).

This came about because the two franchise operators, Virgin and Stagecoach, were unable to meet the required payments to the Government in the £3.3 billion contract.

LNER branding has started going up at York station. There are ‘Welcome To York’ signs in the new red and black colours, and posters under the train information boards.

Collapsed franchise

You can’t miss the new company at the train information point

Ahead of the shake-up York Central MP Rachael Maskell showed the shadow transport secretary Andy McDonald round Network Rail’s Rail Operating Centre (ROC) on Thursday (June 21).

Ms Maskell pointed out that the collapse of the east coast rail franchise marks the third time in a decade that a private train operator has failed to see out its contract on the line.

A Virgin train next to an LNER sign

Card image cap

‘This casts a shadow over the future of York’ – city leader speaks out over East Coast Main Line fiasco

The publicly owned company East Coast ran the franchise from 2009 and 2015. She said it met its financial commitments to the Government, putting £1bn back into the Treasury, and also achieved record levels of public satisfaction.

Ms Maskell said:

Privatisation of the service has been a disaster with private companies creaming off the profits for shareholders but failing to deliver for passengers or meet their contractual obligations.