Britain nationalises Northern Rail contract


FILE PHOTO: A Northern Rail train is parked at Stockport railway station in Stockport, Britain, June 4, 2018. REUTERS/Phil Noble

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain said it would nationalise Northern Rail, putting services between cities like Manchester and Leeds into government control after it axed a contract with Deutsche Bahn’s Arriva due to poor performance.

Transport minister Grant Shapps said in a written statement on Wednesday that a public-sector operator would take over the running of the railway contract from March 1.

“I am determined that Northern passengers see real and tangible improvements across the network as soon as possible,” Shapps said.

Passengers on Northern Rail have had to endure years of problems, with high levels of delays and cancellations due to strikes, driver shortages, timetable issues, delays to the delivery of new trains and old, creaking infrastructure.

Reporting by Sarah Young; Editing by Alistair Smout

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