RIC-Edinburgh banner at Holyrood before the crowds assemble to march
One of the many humorous placards on the march
Trump baby blimp joins the rally on The Meadows after 20,000 strong march
The Franchise Model
●The Railways are fragmented and privatised between service operator, rolling stock provider and infrastructure provider
●Tendering contracts issued every ten years.
●No incentive for investment. In fact, weaker performance can attract subsidies.
East Coast Rail - Privatisation
●Franchise privatised again in 2015
●Taken over by Virgin East Coast – Stagecoach (90%) + Virgin (10% - until 2023
●Collapsed in 2018 – running at a loss
●UK Govt lets it off with £2bn in owed premium payments
A Public Scotrail
•2025 contract up – 2020 break clause
•Scotland Act 2016 gave power for a public bidder
•Public-sector bid will have to compete on tender criteria
•If bid wins – 6.5% operating profits can be re-invested – reduce ticket pr raise wages
•Bid could include worker/passenger democracy •Scottish Government indicated they are interested
•Rolling stock still privatised •infrastructure still UK controlled •£30m lost in tendering process
•limits to how big a change a public operator could make...
•Control all aspects of rail system: eliminate non-productive costs and have unified rail system and integrated transport strategy (bus, cycle, rail)
•Re-think of rail part of bigger re-think of transport: modal shift away from roads to sustainable, efficient transport
•Roads 2017-18 budget spending nearly £1bn (£200m more than railways)
•Borders Railway shows potential of rail investment: 40,000 people shift from cars to rail; 27% increase in B&B use; prevent decline in local population
•Transport 27% of all emissions (up from 20% in 2003) – fallen by just 2% since 1990.
•73% of emissions from road; 1.35% from rail.
•22ktCO2e reduced for every 1% of passenger kilometres currently
travelled by car switched to rail.
•Each tonne of freight transported by rail rather than road produces 76% less CO2
•Only one-quarter of rail track is electrified – CO2 of electric trains 20- 35% less.
•Major air pollution problem in cities from congestion.
•Expanding rail network can open up local economies, increase domestic tourism and connect people to employment opportunities
•Levenmouth example: closed in 1969 in Beeching cuts, line still owned by Network Rail, largest town in Scotland without a rail line (38,000 people), Whisky distillery keen to use line for freight cargo (currently 8 HGV’s a day).
•HGV’s create congestion and damage roads, increasing repair budget – one freight train removes 43-77 HGV’s; £2.4bn annual cost of congestion to economy.
•Reduced road repair budget can be reprioritised.
•30% of people don’t access a car – nearly half of poorest 20%, compared to 18% of richest 20%.
•Investing in motorways rather than rail benefits the better off. •Levenmouth closure example – high deprivation and unemployment since deindustrialisation.
•Rail investment in poor towns a class issue.