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Northern Rail problems ‘out of its control’

by LLB Editor
29th Jan 20 9:33 am

Northern Rail passengers have faced chaos since new timetables were introduced.

The franchise, operated by Arriva, now faces being renationalised but rail journalist Tony Miles tells the BBC’s Today programme that Northern has faced challenges which were “out of its control.”

“New trains that are being delivered from a Spanish manufacturer are up to a year late arriving, so it’s had to keep some old trains running.

“It was also asked to introduced a new timetable with a lot more trains running through key cities, namely Manchester. In the contract, the government had promised that it would upgrade a lot of the infrastructure, but then cancelled most of that scheme. So even the new trains are running on a railway that’s not supposed to handle them.

“And finally, it was asked to change the role of the guard. It’s faced a great deal of industrial action, and has had to continue with negotiations with its hands tied by government restrictions around what it can do.”

Mr Miles added that he didn’t expect things would get better for passengers much sooner.

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