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New buses to suck in killer particles [subscription]

A generation of “pollution-busting” buses that suck in dangerous particles will be introduced nationwide under plans to improve air quality.

Watchdog warns HS2 construction must begin by end of March, as government continues to dither

The National Audit Office says HS2 will be further delayed if construction doesn't begin soon

Friday, 24 January 2020

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  • New fears over where HS2 is goingThe UK is building a railway which is heading to fantasy land. The taxpayer is funding this journey, which has already cost more than £7 billion.

Financial Times

The Guardian

  • HS2 was only ever about politics. And the battle will reach the heart of No 10 | Simon JenkinsOn the one side, the lobbyists; on the other, Boris Johnson’s closest advisers. This will be a major test of his mettleWill it be yes or no to HS2? Within the next fortnight the answer is due on whether Britain needs a fifth rail pathway to the north from London. At more than £100bn, it would be the country’s biggest peacetime infrastructure project. HS2 no longer has anything to do with trains, let alone economics, politics or the north-south balance. It is about Boris Johnson and what sort of leader he intends to be. That is why HS2 is tearing Downing Street apart. Related: Grant Shapps dela...
  • HS2 late and billions over budget due to Tory failures, report findsGovernment failed to understand risks of the project, NAO concludes The planned construction of HS2 is billions of pounds over budget and years behind schedule because of the failure across government to understand the risks involved, according to a damning independent report.In the first official indication that spending on the controversial rail project could escalate beyond £100bn, the National Audit Office has raised the possibility of a further increase by admitting that it is “impossible to estimate with certainty” how much it will eventually cost. Continue reading...
  • South Western Railway staff vote for fresh wave of strikesCommuters on the South Western Railway face further disruption after staff voted for more strikes in a long-running dispute over the use of guards.

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Coach and Bus Week

  • Managing Director issues an open letter to First Bristol customersThe delays being experienced by First Bristol customers due to traffic congestion and roadworks have increased in recent weeks, the result is that the Managing Director of First Bristol has issued an open letter to them
  • Local buses clock the lowest mileage in decadesAccording to the latest annual figures released by the Department for Transport, buses in England travelled a distance of 1.18 billion miles in 2018/19 – down from 1.33 billion in 2008/09.
  • Stagecoach announces operational leadership changesStagecoach has announced a number of moves within its bus businesses in the north of the country, which will see four Managing Directors taking up new roles. The moves are part of Stagecoach’s ongoing business change programme, which is designed to ensure that the company is fit for the future across its business.
  • Transdev sells Flygbussarna to concentrate on core businessAs a consequence of Transdev Group’s strategy since 2018 to re-focus on its core businesses, it has sold operations such as Isilines, Eurolines and SuperShuttle, as well as taxi operations in the United Kingdom and United States. In line with this strategy, Transdev is to exit the airport coach business in Sweden by selling its Flygbussarna activity. The company operates 85 buses, and has 450 employees.

Rail Technology Magazine

  • Engineering expertise in Northern's £100m investmentRail operator, Northern, has published insight into the processes and engineering expertise involved with its current £100m investment into its trains. The ongoing modernisation programme is working to fully refurbish 268 diesel and electric trains at six train depots across the...
  • New tech-enabled trains are putting passengers in control Source: RTM Dec 19/Jan 20 Robert Nisbet, director of Nations and Regions at the Rail Delivery Group, looks ahead at the future of Interconnectivity of the Rail Industry. This year, nine operators are introducing new and upgraded trains with better technology on board, which are part of the...
  • Transform a Pacer competition winners announced Aired on television last night (Jan 22) the lucky winners of the Transform a Pacer competition were announced. The competition means that after 30 years of service to northern communities Pacer trains will now serve them in a new way, focused on bringing the community together. The judges were...

Railnews

  • HS2 still faces ˜significant risks™, says Audit Office report The project to build high speed lines between London, Birmingham, Manchester and Leeds is falling years behind schedule and costing a lot more than forecast, because both the Department for Transport and the government™s developer HS2 Ltd ˜widely underestimated™ the budgets and completion dates, according to a new report from the National Audit Office. The DfT and HS2 Ltd also failed to manage the risks adequately, the report finds, saying ˜if these risks had been recognised and managed earlier, then the significant activity in a pressured environment over the past year trying to understand a...

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