Avanti brand name replaces Virgin Trains West Coast

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This topic contains 17 replies, has 8 voices, and was last updated by  TominScotland 6 Dec 2019
at 18:14
.

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 18 total)

  • AMcWhirter
    Participant

    The Scotsman reports First-Trenitalia has devised the name Avanti West Coast for its new franchise starting next month.

    https://www.scotsman.com/news/transport/avanti-west-coast-unveiled-as-name-of-new-scotland-london-train-operator-1-5053364


    Mark Caswell
    Keymaster

    canucklad
    Participant

    “Great News” & “ Absolutely brilliant decision making ”

    A joint venture with a company that can’t manage to run our local buses , plus have a successful track record of failing at running a train franchise , then add in an Italian state owned company to the mix !!

    By now you’ll have realised that my opening comments are said with just the heaviest hint of sarcasm !!

    3 users thanked author for this post.

    LuganoPirate
    Participant

    Have to agree Canucklad. It’ll be interesting to see how it all pans out.


    TominScotland
    Participant

    Bus companies seem to be a common theme here as partners in the franchise. Are Stagecoach that much better than First, Canucklad?


    WilliamRead
    Participant

    My local station, Stafford, is changing from Virgin Trains to Avanti, yet there is no information material in the building about any changes to facilities, car parking, timetables etc, and it is only a few days away.


    LuganoPirate
    Participant

    Italian railways are in strike today. A few trains will run, but without any guarantee!!


    canucklad
    Participant

    Bus companies seem to be a common theme here as partners in the franchise. Are Stagecoach that much better than First, Canucklad?

    Morning Tom

    You’re more than likely right , living in West Lothian means that I haven’t (benefit of doubt) experienced Stagecoach . On the other hand , I have experienced “First Group” and they are an absolute shambles …..

    And , actually if we scrutinise public transport at a localised level , and its sheer incompetence at providing a reliable ,cheap service you’ll find the same negative dynamic factors at work at a national level with our rail network

    Livingston is my closest significant conurbation , and here is a summary of the bus service that people have to endure

    • 5 different companies working independently, with non-transferable tickets
    • Over priced tickets for very short journeys ( It’s actually cheaper for groups of 3 or more people to use taxis instead of buses , including longer trips to Edinburgh –so , so much for going green
    • Timetables that mean First & Lothian buses chase each other along the same popular routes vying for the same passengers ( 2 double decker’s trying to navigate through the tiny village of Kirknewton is fun to watch , if only for its Pythonesque farce)
    • Some of the buses are that old, you’d think you were in a Kinshasa shanty town
    • Delays and cancellations for no apparent reason – Couple of weeks ago, I waited for 80 minutes for a bus, at Haymarket during rush hour , on a route that should have a bus every 15 minutes !!
    • See above, and add in overcrowding

    All too familiar isn’t it ?
    No wonder our rail network reflects on a grander scale what happens with our public transport on local level if Stagecoach, First and others run them !!


    AMcWhirter
    Participant

    My local station, Stafford, is changing from Virgin Trains to Avanti, yet there is no information material in the building about any changes to facilities, car parking, timetables etc, and it is only a few days away.

    I wonder it is because Stafford is managed by Virgin Trains ?


    alistairNicoll
    Participant

    “Great News” & “ Absolutely brilliant decision making ”

    A joint venture with a company that can’t manage to run our local buses , plus have a successful track record of failing at running a train franchise , then add in an Italian state owned company to the mix !!

    By now you’ll have realised that my opening comments are said with just the heaviest hint of sarcasm !!

    Don’t worry they have bought in the old management from Virgin that specialised in finding ways to blame everyone else for their mistakes and lack of action so expect little and you will not be disapointed


    WilliamRead
    Participant

    Yes, but I was hoping for some informtion from the new company re timetables, facilities, booking arrangements etc before the actual start date. The media has been very quiet on exactly why Virgin trains has lost the franchise; I presume the new company will also take over the railway station.


    alistairNicoll
    Participant

    They lost because they were not willing to comply with the conditions set by the government in their tender would likely be the official reason.

    In the short term there will be no significant changes to the timetable, facilities and booking arrangements the most you are likely to see is one of two trains in their new livery. All stations previously managed by Virgin will transfer to the new company.


    WilliamRead
    Participant

    Thanks; some “takeovers” in the commercial world involve the (almost) complete replacement of management and staff by new personnel, with good or bad results. It seems that this new company will use 100% of the existing Virgin Trains staff, so not much change in the immediate future.


    AMcWhirter
    Participant

    The media has been very quiet on exactly why Virgin trains has lost the franchise

    Not really.

    Months ago it was reported in the broadsheets. Last April we reported on the reason why – check the link below re Stagecoach and EM Trains.

    Stagecoach to lose East Midlands Trains franchise

    1 user thanked author for this post.

    mkcol74
    Participant

    My local station, Stafford, is changing from Virgin Trains to Avanti, yet there is no information material in the building about any changes to facilities, car parking, timetables etc, and it is only a few days away.

    My husband works for VT, soon to be Avanti.

    The rail franchising system means that EVERYTHING has to remain as is, with the exception of the VT branding, until 23:59 07/12/19. The branding has been slowly getting removed from all areas & should be complete before handover. Even the onboard wifi is now “WestCoastTrains” and the auto-announcer refers to “this train” rather than Virgin Trains.

    The current timetables have to remain on display until handover, even though the national timetable change is the following week, as the times of the trains won’t be changing just because the brand is.

    The basic thing to remember is that, except the brand name, everything will be the same for the foreseeable.

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