A spirited RMT news release is demanding the new minority Government rapidly returns East Coast rail routes to public ownership as the Union claims the 'franchise teeters on the brink of financial collapse.'
This latest demand by the Union comes after it emerged this morning that the major franchisee Stagecoach are in talks with the Government over what the RMT calls 'financial chaos' on the franchise.
Julian Bray Transport and Aviation Analyst comments: "Stagecoach is flagging up an £84 million anticipated loss in their accounts released this morning on East Coast rail operations.
"Clearly this could just be 'financial engineering' getting the bad news out early, but the figure of £84million is far less than what is being termed the 'Northern Ireland bung' to the DUP, and if HMTreasury was so minded could easily (possibly from the contingency fund)support the East Coast Main Line, as the HS2 railway and the Heathrow third runway projects could now be casualties or at best deferred until the next parliament, and the already available East Coast Main Line returns to being the UKs priority express main railway line; such a move, would easily and quickly release urgently needed taxpayer funds to finance the growing number of tower block cladding failures - currently 137 tower blocks in 47 UK local authority areas have failed the latest fire tests as at June 29 2017 - rehousing of displaced social housing tenants, and to underwrite the impending removal of the cap on public sector pay rises."
Mick Cash RMT General Secretary said: "RMT warned that re-privatising East Coast, after it had been successfully run in the public sector following the last private failure, was a gamble doomed to failure. We have been proved right.
"This is the third private operator to run the vital East Coast inter-city routes into the ground and rather than waiting for the inevitable financial collapse it should be brought back into public ownership immediately. "
JULIAN BRAY +44(0)1733 345581, Journalist & Broadcaster, Aviation Security & Airline Operations Analyst/expert, www.freelancedirectory.org?name=Julian.Bray.aviation.comment, Travel / Maritime & Cruise Industry, NUJ, EQUITY, LIVE ISDN LINK, Broadcast ISDN COOBE ++44 (0)1733 345020 e&oe Old faithful NOKIA: 07944 217476 www.aviationcomment.com,