Tfw Rail Franchise Agreement
KeolisAmey acquired the franchise in 2018 and took over from Arriva Trains Wales. TfW, Keolis and Amey have announced that they have reached an agreement that will result in the implementation of a new financing and operating model, details of which will be finalised in the coming months. This agreement is welcomed by the Welsh Government and TfW, who now have a sustainable path to achieving their ambitious rail targets, despite the effects of Covid-19, and Keolis and Amey, who will continue to bring their internationally recognised expertise to deliver the transformation for the benefit of passengers in Wales. Despite the review, there are many questions about whether this measure actually sets a new precedent, given that there is a clear history of the wider UK government that has followed in the footsteps of rail transport in recent years. For example, in recent years, the UK government became the OLR of the London North Eastern Railway in June 2018 and took over the last Northern Rail franchise on 1 March 2020. KeolisAmey, a joint venture between Keolis and Amey, will bring a series of improvements for a new era for passengers and Wales, with more rail services, newer trains, better stations and more reliable interconnection. Rail transport for Wales is expected to come under the control of the Welsh Government from next February. Unlike the previous franchise, awarded by the Department of Transport, the new Transport for Wales franchise was awarded on behalf of the Welsh Government.  Transport for Wales (TfW) was established in 2015 as a wholly owned company in Wales. In 2018, privately held KeolisAmey won the Wales and Borders franchise to operate and maintain TfW`s rail services for the next 15 years.
It is these rail services that will be placed under the control of the Welsh Government from February 2021 to help the franchise get through the coronavirus pandemic further. Transport for Wales` rail network is over 1600 km long, with 247 stations and carrying more than 30 million passengers a year. “In the face of Covid-19, we recognise that the Welsh Government needs to find a sustainable way forward to achieve its ambitious rail transport targets, and we are delighted to have agreed on and introduced robust principles, while working on the details of a new agreement. Helen Mary Jones, Plaid Cymru`s transport spokeswoman, said “it can be the right decision” and said her party had “always maintained that our railways should be placed in the hands of the public and that the government should put passengers before profit”. The Welsh government, which is putting the Wales and Borders franchise under public control as a last resort operator (OLR), has attracted a lot of media attention in recent weeks, making political statements for and against such a measure. Rhiannon Holtham wonders if this decision can set a new precedent. The financial risk of the Wales and Borders rail franchise, managed under the Transport for Wales (TfW) brand, has already been taken over by taxpayers under a £65 million deal signed in May. These rail franchise agreements will be published in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act 2000.
Franchise agreements are blackened out in accordance with waivers authorized by the Secretary of State under the Freedom of Information Act 2000. Keolis is France`s largest private public transport company – but its main shareholder is the French public railway SNCF. KeolisAmey Operations (Welsh: Gweithrediadau KeolisAmey), known as Transport for Wales Rail Services (TfW Rail Services), is a Welsh train management company owned by Keolis (60%) and Amey (40%) that operates the Wales and Borders franchise. . . .