thisisNewBristol
Hello Guest   [ Log in ]  |   Jobs  |   Motors  |   Property  |   Community  |
   Home
   Jobs
   Motors
   Property
   Classifieds
   News
   Budget 2006
   Sport
   Bristol City
   Bristol Rovers
   Bristol RFC
   World Cup 2006
   Entertainment
   Local Cinema Times
   Dining Out
   Days Out
   Video Bulletins
   Podcasts
   Photo Slideshows
   Competitions
   National Lottery
   Live Traffic and Travel
   Local Information
   Evening Post
   Western Daily Press
   Interact
 Search this Site:
   Search
Opinion:
Do you support the strike action over pensions?
Yes
No
Submit vote >>

Today's Evening Post

Subscribe
Email the editor
Contact the paper

Have your say
Write a letter to the editor
Vote on our opinion polls

Interact
Sign up for daily emails
Sign up for newsflashes
Order a copy of the newspaper


Display an easily printable version of
						this story

Email this story to anyone you like
TRANSPORT GROUP IS FIRST FOR BRISTOL
Next Story | Previous Story | Back to list
1 reader has commented on this story. Click here to read their views.
MARC COOPER

08:25 - 14 December 2005
Transport firm First Group will operate nearly all trains and buses in the Bristol and North Somerset area after winning the race to secure the Greater Western rail franchise.

The firm has won a 10-year contract to run the Great Western line, which it already operates, as well as the Bristol to Weston line, which is currently run by Wessex Trains. It means First Group, which already runs the majority of buses in the area, will be able to co-ordinate timetables between inter-city trains, local trains and buses.

Today, First said it would be introducing a new direct line between Weston and Filton, and an hourly service between Weston and Bristol.

First has also pledged to spend millions of pounds on new high-speed trains, new ticket machines, upgrades to waiting rooms, an additional 1,700 car parking spaces, and bicycle spaces at every station.

It said the current timetable would stay in place until December 2006.

First Group chief executive Moir Lockhead said: "We are delighted to be awarded both of these franchises and look forward to delivering the improved performance, capacity, facilities and customer benefits proposed in our winning bids. We are now the UK's largest rail operator and will carry more than 260 million passengers per annum."

First beat competition from rival Stagecoach to secure the new Greater Western franchise, which combines First Great Western, First Great Western Link and the Wessex service. It will run for an initial seven years with a probable extension of three years.

First has also won the Thameslink and Great Northern franchise.

First will pay the Government about 1.9 billion for the two new franchises, which it will take over from April 1 next year, and will earn more than 1 billion per year.

It said it would be immediately investing 200 million to improve its fleet of trains.

Local campaigning group Transport 2000 said the announcement was the "outcome it had lobbied for".

Spokesman David Redgewell said: "We are very pleased with the outcome. We believe that it will integrate the local trains and buses in Bristol and Weston-super-Mare.

"It will be the same company operating local trains, buses and inter-city trains. It will integrate timetables, and hopefully it will look at opening the Portishead to Bristol line."

The announcement comes just days after First revealed that rail fares are to be increased by up to five per cent in the New Year for passengers travelling to and from Bristol.

From January 2, fares for trains between Temple Meads and London Paddington will rise by up to 4.5 per cent - the third price increase from the firm in a year.

In June, it increased some fares by twice the rate of inflation, blaming rising fuel costs, despite prices having already been pushed up by four per cent in January.

Travelling on First buses also became more expensive this week when fares rose by up to 22 per cent - the third round of increases in less than a year.

First blamed fuel and insurance costs for the fare rises.

 
Email a Friend
Email a friend about this story and story comments:
Friend's e-mail address *
Your name*
Your e-mail address*
Please type a message here
* = Required Field
Send the story email to friend
  Your Views
Amazing...if First are now going to be running the trains, it just goes to show how low on the agenda customer service actually is. Just buy cars people...public transport in this country has been pronounced dead.
Anonymous, Bristol

Comments 1 to 1 of 1
Comment on this story
Use the boxes below to give us your comments on the story above. Your comments will then be published here on the website and also possibly in-print in the Evening Post.
How Story Comments works How Story Comments works
Your Name
Your Location
Your email address(Not for publication)
  Please tick this box if you are happy for someone from the newspaper or website to contact you via email for further comments.
Comment(max. 4000 characters)
  Next Story | Previous Story | Back to list
Copyright | Disclaimer | Privacy statement | Contact the Website | Work for us


Printer
Recruitment Administration Team Caseworkers
Team Managers - Contact Centre
HGV Driver
Health & Safety Advisor
Commercial Manager/
Quantity Surveyor

Support Workers
Managers/esses
Marketing Positions
Marketing Opportunities

Click here for discounted Online Bookings

Advertisement
Cheap Secured Personal Loans at Advice Online