HUDDERSFIELD’S MP has welcomed the re-nationalisation of a Yorkshire train service.
The East Coast mainline – which connects Leeds and Wakefield with London – was taken back into public ownership at midnight.
Speaking on his way to catch an East Coast service from Wakefield, Barry Sheerman said: “I’m delighted. In my dreams, I would like it to stay in the state sector.”
The Government has taken on the line – which links London and Edinburgh – after operator National Express said it couldn’t pay £1.3bn for the franchise by 2015.
Mr Sheerman – who uses the service several times a month – believes it went downhill when National Express took over from GNER in 2006.
He said: “The food on the GNER service won awards for being the best in Europe but it was replaced by cheap and cheerful stuff. When National Express took over you could see staff morale flagging.”
Mr Sheerman hopes the Government-run service will improve the food and put on an 11pm service from London to Yorkshire. He said: “I campaigned for years for a Starlight Express which would allow people to go down to London, see a show, and then get the late-night train back.”
The Government plans to re-privatise the service in 2011.