Sheffield Chamber of Commerce warmly welcomes Northern Rail Franchise Award

9th December 2015

Sheffield Chamber of Commerce & Industry warmly welcomed today's announcement of the award of the Northern Rail franchise to Arriva Trains.

The franchise initially runs to 2025. As well as seeing the end of the detested Pacer trains, the franchise commitment by Arriva goes much further than many were expecting. The biggest commitment is the creation of the Northern Connect network. Sheffield benefits as follows: Brand new diesel trains operating at least 10 trains a day from Bradford to Leeds and then via Sheffield to Nottingham routed via Wakefield Westgate with an improved Leeds to Sheffield journey time of around 50 minutes. A much improved service using mostly new diesel trains from Sheffield to Hull. There are likely to be 15 services per day with at least 11 operated by the new trains. Sheffield to Lincoln will also be operated by new trains with an improved journey time 10 minutes faster than at present, and 10 trains per day. There will also be a 30 minute interval service from Sheffield to Retford via Worksop. The Sunday Lincoln to Sheffield service will become hourly with 11 trains. Peter Kennan, Chair of the Sheffield Chamber Transport Forum and Partner at Hawsons Chartered Accountants said: -This announcement helps deliver the improved fast city centre to city centre rail connections that the Chamber has been calling for, and the Leeds to Sheffield service improvement is particularly welcome, with its much faster journey times. This will start to deliver some of the rail improvements that are needed to unlock the potential of the Northern Powerhouse and coupled with the Trans-Pennine Express announcements, which improved capacity on Sheffield to Manchester services, at last we can think that Sheffield is to benefit from a serious improvement in its rail services, which can only be good for the economy and business.

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