Nationalise the National Express East Anglia rail network, say RMT and TSSA trade unions

TRADE union leaders have called on the Government to intervene to end the on-going shambles of National Express rail operations.Both the RMT and TSSA unions are seeking a clear timetable for renationalisation of the East Coast Mainline and the East Angli

TRADE union leaders have called on the Government to intervene to end the on-going shambles of National Express rail operations.

Both the RMT and TSSA unions are seeking a clear timetable for renationalisation of the East Coast Mainline and the East Anglia and C2C franchises as a takeover bid for the company collapsed on Friday (October 16) triggering a 30 per cent collapse in National Express's share price.

The Cosmen family and CVC Capital Partners tabled a formal bid for National Express back in September. That offer has now been withdrawn. As a consequence, a side deal which could have seen Stagecoach taking over National Express's UK rail and bus operations has also collapsed.

The Government confirmed at the end of June that they were renationalising the National Express East Coast Mainline franchise as the company had indicated that they were to default by the end of the year. Under the rail franchise cross-default rules National Express should also lose their East Anglia and C2C routes.


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Bob Crow, RMT general secretary, said: "It's time to end the soap opera over National Express's rail operations and to clear them off the tracks before any lasting damage is done.

"The collapse of the takeover bid this morning just throws up more uncertainty and instability and now is the time for the Government to step in and set an immediate timetable for the renationalisation of East Coast Main Line, East Anglia and C2C.

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"The whole fiasco on the East Coast Mainline has turned the spotlight on the continuing chaos of rail privatisation and underlines why over 70% of the British public support renationalisation of our railways."

Gerry Doherty, leader of the TSSA rail union, called on Transport Secretary Lord Adonis to renationalise all three National Express rail franchises in the light of the collapse of the Spanish bid to takeover the troubled rail and bus group.

He said: "Lord Adonis should stop the City cherry picking the best bits of National Express and announce today that all three franchises will now be run in the pulic interest.

"Why should the taxpayers just pick up the bill for the loss making East Coast line? Both c2c and National Express East Anglia should be brought back into pubic ownership and run in the interests of the passengers rather than private shareholders.

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