Pay for a mess or pay for success?

HQ of Deutsche Bahn in Berlin

Head Office

One thing is clear:

We taxpayers will pay the £40 million to compensate the bidders in the failed, flawed West Coast franchise process.

The rest is a shambles. Three civil servants are suspended, but their political masters, the transport ministers, keep their jobs as usual. The Great Western franchise process is now suspended. Who will run our main lines in north and south Wales in future, and on what terms? We just don’t know.

Two of the bidders for the West Coast franchise are themselves state-owned rail corporations – not our state, or course, but France and Netherlands. Your taxes will compensate their governments. All other Welsh rail services (plus a large slice of our bus transport) are run by Deutsche Bahn – German state railways.

There’s only one state unable and unwilling to take control of our public transport: Britain.

Can we do better in Wales? Will Welsh Government draw the obvious conclusion staring us in the face?

Own and run the railways in the public interest. We’re already paying for a mess. We’d rather pay for success.

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