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Four firms battle to run c2c trains between South Essex and London
6:00am Thursday 3rd October 2013 in Local News
The Government is seeking bids from a range of companies to run the line for 15 years from September, next year.
The initial bidding process collapsed last year following a legal wrangle over the West Coast line.
Companies who ran for the contract previously were c2c, First Group, Abellio and the Hong Kong-based MTR Corporation.
Rail operator c2c’s last franchise expired in May, but it was allowed to continue running services in the meantime.
Peter Slattery, chairman of the Southend Rail Travellers’ Federation, said: “It’s open to the four companies that were bidding before and I think c2c have got as good a chance as any of them to win it.
“It was good that c2c carried on running for the time being when the franchise was suspended, because they do quite a good job.
“But it hasn’t been allowed to change the timetable to improve services, so we’d like to see that being allowed again.”
Rail Minister Simon Burns said: “We are now looking for innovative bids that provide value for money for taxpayers and put passengers right back at the heart of our railways.”
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