East Coast rail service to be renationalised after Virgin Trains and Stagecoach Group franchise is ended

Virgin East Coast.
Virgin East Coast.
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The troubled East Coast rail service is to be renationalised after current operators Stagecoach and Virgin could not meet payments

The London to Edinburgh service, which runs through Peterborough, will be taken back into public control on June 24.

The move comes just over three years after Virgin Trains East Coast started running under a franchise of Virgin Trains and Stagecoach.

The new service will be rebranded as the London and North Eastern Railway.

Trains will be run by the Department for Transport (DfT) through an operator of last resort (OLR).

The announcement was made by Transport Secretary Chris Grayling in the House of Commmons.

He said: " I am creating a new board with an independent chair to oversee the operation of the LNER route and work with my Department on building the new partnership.

"It will have representatives of both the train operating team and Network Rail, as well as independent members who will importantly ensure the interests of other operators on the route are taken into account.

"I will appoint an interim chair shortly, and then begin the recruitment process for a long term appointment.

" When it is fully formed the new LNER operation will be a partnership between the public and private sectors.

"In all circumstances ownership of the infrastructure will remain in the public sector, but the railway is at its strongest when it is a genuine partnership between public and private."