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Virgin lobbies for UK rail franchise rethink

Virgin lobbies for UK rail franchise rethink

Virgin Group boss Richard Branson is launching a last-minute campaign to regain a British rail franchise after he was outbid by a rival.
Virgin has run the London to Scotland route since 1997, but the Department of Transport has decided to let FirstGroup run the franchise for the next 13 years.
Branson claims FirstGroup bid too much for the contract and would be forced to raise fares. Britain's opposition Labour Party has urged the government not to sign the contract until lawmakers have scrutinized it.
On Monday, Virgin Trains offered to operate the route for a few months on a not-for-profit basis to allow extra time for lawmakers to rethink the decision. Virgin also said an independent online petition against the decision has gained 100,000 signatures from the public.


Updated : 2021-04-15 08:15 GMT+08:00