Friday, 21 December 2012

Christmas Quiz - Question 94

The Man by the Photocopier writes...

A curious release has just appeared from DafT’s Office of Seasonal Tales.

This purports to be government ‘backing’ for new train orders for Southern, amounting to 216 vehicles. Except that they have already been announced in principle and are not really for Southern, as the lower part of the release admits.

So why is Southern (a departing franchise) involved in ordering trains for the Midland Main Line?

Presumably they could well have their first outings on Thameslink (thus releasing some 319s., etc.) and from 2015 Southern + Thameslink are set to be joined together (depending on Mr Brown, of course).

Ah, Christmas. Always a good time to bury bad – or at least contentious – news...

UPDATE: A little more from The Man by the Photocopier...

Sometimes in spite of best efforts in the Horseferry Road there comes a rare gleam of clarity, even in these well-spun times.

A new Q + A just published by ever-helpful Southern about potential rolling stock orders includes this modest gem ...

Q The original announcement said that the option was for 100 carriages. Why has this changed to 140?

A This is what the Department for Transport has asked us to do.

Quite so.

UPDATE: This from Derbyshire Lad...

Might I be allowed to use your electronic organ to praise the DfT for its vision and insight in ordering more trains from a British factory rather than overseas.

Clearly the arrival of Patrick McLoughlin MP (Derbyshire Dales) at the Department for Transport has resulted in an outbreak of train procurement wisdom.

Patrick is a colossus amongst pygmys, a seer amongst the dullards... (cont in this vein for circa 94 pages. Ed)

UPDATE: This from The Archer...

Not wanting to spoil Christmas cheer in Derby but, the DfT’s release claims to be a year-end boost for train builders with two new train orders.

Note the plural ‘train builders’ rather than the singular ‘train builder’.

Bombardier is one of these train builders as they’ve got an order for another 40 carriages for Southern.

By definition then the second, and larger order, for 116 or 256 carriages, must be going to another train builder.

Merry Christmas Derby!