Thursday, 26 November 2009

Thameslink 4000 - fleet update - doomed

Alstom may be counting its blessings, now that it is out of the running for the new Thameslink fleet.

This response from Moley to a question by Stephen Hammond MP given in the House on the 24th November:

Stephen Hammond (Shadow Minister, Transport; Wimbledon, Conservative)

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Transport pursuant to the answer of 12 November 2009, Official Report, column 639W, on Thameslink: Rolling Stock, when he expects to (a) announce the preferred bidder and (b) place the final order for the Thameslink rolling stock programme.

Chris Mole (Parliamentary Under-Secretary, Department for Transport; Ipswich, Labour)

The identification of a preferred bidder prior to final award will depend on the progress of the evaluation and negotiations with the remaining bidders. As set in out in my answer of 12 November 2009, Hansard, column 639W, the Department for Transport is currently planning to award the order around autumn 2010.

So the order for these new trains will not be placed until Autumn 2010.

Which is of course after the date of the General Election (presumed to be the 6th May 2010).

And the Tories have promised an austerity budget within 50 days of taking power.

Is the Eye alone in thinking that this order is now doomed?

Of course it's a nice poison chalice to pass on to the Tories who will get the blame for cancelling the order.