UNIONS slammed the government’s “outrageous” decision today to extend the Virgin Trains contract to run services on the West Coast Main Line.
Transport Secretary Chris Grayling announced that the company’s contract would be extended until April 2020.
The franchise had been due to end this April, but the government previously announced Virgin would run services until April 2019.
Mr Grayling has been hammered for his mismanagement of Virgin’s East Coast franchise, which will end three years early in 2020.
RMT general secretary Mick Cash said Mr Grayling’s announcement exposed “the cronyism and chicanery of the privatised rail franchising process and will ram yet another nail into the coffin of this whole rotten business.”
Drivers’ union Aslef general secretary Mick Whelan said: “It is outrageous that Virgin Trains has been handed a lucrative new contract to run services on the West Coast Main Line despite serious criticism of its owners’ handling of the east coast franchise.”
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