Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Kerry McCarthy: Blog Saves Trains from Lib Dem Cuts

Bristol MP Kerry McCarthy has a blog here which I've found thanks to Hopi Sen. Lobbying on Bristol's Transport needs has paid off. It was a McCarthy EDM aiming to save the Severn beach line from diminished service after Lib Dem cuts which John Leech MP refused to sign. In fact, though he missed signing the attempted deflection of blame tabled by Stephen Williams MP he did help generate an amendment effectively supporting Bristol Lib Dems with their cut in subsidy.

Not quite what I had in mind when I asked a local MP to intercede.

The short-lived Lib Dem regime in the Council House was swiftly ended, and the service - which I used to use twice a day, commuting from Sea Mills station (above) - now has a future with direct subsidy restored. Thanks to Kerry, PPC Paul Smith and others. No thanks to John Leech MP, John Hemming MP and the other Lib Dem hatchet men.


tdppollard said...

Actually the improved service is because the Lib Dems introduced a subsidy when they ran the council in spring 2007. The previous subsidy was removed by the Labour government when they redrew the franchise agreement in 2006 (with no decrease in service) - but clearly you have a party political angle you wish to peddle for which you are happy to ignore the facts.

Chris Paul said...

I'm not sure it's improved particularly. Just not closed down.

Is it not a fact that LDs refused to maintain the subsidy to this line, instead pointing at a generic subsidy to the franchise holder which they could use (or not) on the line?

And that since LDs lost control there is a specific subsidy again? Hurrah.

Anonymous said...

No Chris, you've got this one wrong. The initial subsidy that supported a First Great Western service became obsolete because the new franchise contract included the formerly subsidised service as part of the new base agreement. Of course, the council could have kept on shovelling free money into FGW's pockets for a service they now had to provide anyway, but common sense dictated that the subsidy be dropped.

A few months later, a new and considerably larger subsidy was negotiated for a new and larger extra service extension. This is what has just come online (despite FGW's attempts to delay it).

You say you use the service twice a way, so you should know this stuff. Why do you use the service so much even though you live in Manchester? Are you being entirely honest here?