Two operators shortlisted for next South Western rail franchise
4 February 2016 • Author: Katie Sadler, Digital Content Producer, European Railway Review
The Department for Transport (DfT) has announced two shortlisted companies who will compete for the next South Western rail franchise in June 2017.
First South Western Trains Ltd and Stagecoach South West Ltd have been shortlisted by the government to run the next South Western rail franchise following an expression of interest from both companies. Once selected, the new operator will take over the rail franchise from June next year.
“We are investing in additional capacity, and have ambitious plans for smart ticketing, customer service and improved connectivity”
Rail Minister Claire Perry said: “The South Western franchise has some of the busiest routes in the country, serving a diverse range of passengers and places. It is vital that we have the best partner to help us meet the challenge of delivering better journeys for all customers using these services.
“We are investing in additional capacity, and have ambitious plans for smart ticketing, customer service and improved connectivity across the South Western network, to give passengers real benefits across the region and beyond.”
Next South Western rail franchise to begin June 2017
The current franchise is operated by South West Trains, and covers urban, suburban, regional, and long-distance routes between London Waterloo, Reading, Bristol, Exeter, Weymouth, and Portsmouth. It also includes the Island Line on the Isle of Wight.