Monday, 22 December 2008

Christmas Conundrum

Telegrammed by Tom over at Boriswatch...
How long before we see Transport Minister Lord Ford of Deltic announcing Government support for keeping the Derby production lines rolling whilst the electrification teams march out across the land?

Nice - fingers crossed for the New Years Honours List

Tips on how to score

Time for some festive cheer from the latest exciting Eye survey.

Readers were asked to answer a simple question by Tom Harris MP.

The results are truly shocking!

45% of you are "miserable now".

Whilst a massive 50% of you believe it is all "too much".

Fortunately, there is some good news.

Only 4% of Railway Eye readers say that there is "not enough".

Railway Eye - faster, longer, deeper.

Bombardier Stock Up !

Good news for UK train manufacturing!

DafT today published the list of prequalified bidders for the additional vehicles announced in the November Pre-Budget Report.

They are...

1. Bombardier Transportation UK Ltd

2. CAF - Construcciones y Auxiliar de Ferrocarriles, S.A.

3. CSRE LTD - Chinese Sourced Railway Equipment on behalf of CSR Nanjing Puzhen Rolling Stock Co., Ltd

4. Hyundai Rotem Company

Ever willing to provide a hostage to fortune DafT have also given an indication of when they expect to announce the preferred bidder: "Closing date for bids is 16th February and it is anticipated that an announcement on the preferred bidder will be made in April."

Better still My Lord Adonis has now gone hard on the numbers. Previously DafT said there would be "up to 200" new vehicles. My Lord Adonis now talks of the: " of these 200 new rail carriages."

In Notes to Editors DafT reminds us that "the 200 new DMUs (...are part of...) the £700m fiscal stimulus announced in last month's Pre-Budget Report".

Putting aside the fact that DafT's Buffoonettes have managed to convert 200 vehicles into 200 DMUs, this is extremely good news for Bombardier.

Of the four short listed bidders only one has previously built a train for the mainland British railways. And with the Class 172 currently in production for Loo-Roll and London Midland, either run-ons or parallel construction are an option - reducing delivery times.

But best of all for these new vehicles to deliver Darling's "fiscal stimulus" they'll need to be built in the UK.

Fill your boots Bombardier!

Quick spin in a Routemaster

Telegrammed by our Independent Expert
Lot's of press plaudits over the weekend for BoJo's new Routemaster designs.

In Saturday's Independent Michael Williams wrote that the retro vehicles dreamt up by Aston Martin and Lord Foster were 'just the ticket' for these troubled times.

Funny how BoJo's PR people failed to mention that the mayor has simultaneously canned two major rail-based schemes - the Camden - Brixton tram and the DLR extension to Dagenham.

It's the train wot takes the pain!