Sunday 12 July 2020

09 February 2018

Making the most of the new East Midlands Rail Franchise

East Midlands Councils through Transport for the East Midlands (TfEM) has set out plans to work with the four bidders for the next East Midlands rail franchise confirmed earlier this week. 

TfEM has been working closely with the Department for Transport on the franchise competition over the last 2 years to get the best outcome for passengers, businesses and local communities across the East Midlands. 

Key priorities include;

  • A full 7-day service with better connections to Derby, Leicester, Lincoln and Nottingham, and with cities elsewhere like Leeds, Birmingham and Manchester
  • Modernised intercity services to London  -  including 'Nottingham in 90' and 'Leicester in 60' 
  • Improved conditions for passengers on trains and at stations and better ticketing and passenger information
  • New trains and improvements to existing rolling stock to meet growing demand, as well as providing passengers with comfortable and speedy journeys.
  • Extra capacity for special events and for the east coast summer holiday season
  • More local sourcing of goods and services by the train operating company to benefit firms and workers in the East Midlands.
  • Clear and consistent branding irrespective of the identity of the train operating company

Sir Peter Soulsby, Chair of TfEM said  

“Despite the regrettable cancellation of Midland Main Line electrification, the new franchise provides a real opportunity to transform rail services across the East Midlands.  We are a growing and prosperous region - and we need rail services comparable to the best elsewhere in England to fulfil our economic potential”

Cllr Roger Blaney, EMC Franchise Lead Member said

“We are keen to work with all four bidders to explain our ideas and see what they can offer.  We are also keen to establish a longer term role for TfEM in the management of the franchise once it has been awarded to ensure that it delivers for local people”

 End of text

 Notes to Editor

The four confirmed bidders for the East Midlands rail franchise are;

  • Arriva Rail
  • First Trenitalia
  • Stagecoach
  • Abellio 

East Midlands Councils is the consultative forum for local authorities in the region. It provides support to Councils to improve their services and is a strong voice for the East Midlands.

Transport for the East Midlands brings together senior leaders from the region’s local transport authorities under the auspices of East Midlands Councils.   It provides regional leadership on strategic transport issues for the East Midlands. 


For further information please contact:

Andrew Pritchard, Director of Policy & Infrastructure, East Midlands Councils

Phone: (01664) 502641


All news releases from East Midlands Councils are emailed to relevant media organisations throughout the East Midlands and beyond. Please keep us up-to-date with your contact details and inform us of any changes.

All news releases can be viewed on our website at