Plea for single train franchise

SOUTH Yorkshire’s local rail services could become part of a new franchise managed by regional transport bosses.

South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive and authorities in Manchester and West Yorkshire have asked the Government to merge the Northern and TransPennine Express franchises and give local authorities control.

Coun Mick Jameson, chairman of the board overseeing SYPTE, said: “A key outcome from this process is to provide a framework for investment in better trains, so there is more capacity for growing passenger numbers, and trains are of increasing quality to attract more people to the railway.”

“We want to enhance the attractiveness of rail.”

Public consultation is to begin later this year for the proposed new north of England rail franchise when the authorities’ proposals will be considered.