Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

Let's Take Charge of Our Own Trains Says Council Boss ; Franchise Fiasco Review Is 'Perfect opportunity'Region Teams Up with Yorkshire for Rail Bid

Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

Let's Take Charge of Our Own Trains Says Council Boss ; Franchise Fiasco Review Is 'Perfect opportunity'Region Teams Up with Yorkshire for Rail Bid

Article excerpt

MANCHESTER'S town hall boss has said the West Coast mainline fiasco has proved the case for the north west taking control of its own railways.

Council chief executive Sir Howard Bernstein said the region's train network is key to driving its economic growth.

And he says Greater Manchester should forge ahead for plans to take over the Transpennine and Northern Rail services. In March, the M.EN revealed transport chiefs planned to team-up with their counterparts in South Yorkshire and West Yorkshire to bid to take control of the local networks. Since then, a formal expression of interest document which sets out the proposals has been submitted to the Department for Transport.

Prepared by Transport for Greater Manchester, it puts forward the case for merging the Transpennine Express and Northern Rail networks and having them managed by a new chief executive. A probe into the West Coast fiasco is underway after the government awarded the running of the franchise to FirstGroup, then reversed its decision after discovering major 'flaws' in the tendering process. …

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