DfT shortlists northern franchise bidders
The Department for Transport has shortlisted bidders for both the Northern and Trans Pennine Express rail passenger franchises.
Arriva Rail North Ltd, Govia Northern Ltd, and Abellio Northern Ltd (the incumbent operator) are bidding for the Northern franchise; Keolis Go-Ahead Ltd, Stagecoach Trans Pennine Express Ltd, and First TransPennine Express Ltd (the incumbent operator) want to run Trans Pennine Express.
The companies have passed the pre-qualification stage and the next step will be the invitation to tender (ITT) in December. Contracts will be awarded in October 2015 and the new franchises will start in February 2016.
The DfT’s recent public consultation on the future of rail services in northern England – which the new franchises should take into account – closed on 18 August 2014.