HL Deb 21 April 1999 vol 599 c162WA
Lord Berkeley

asked Her Majesty's Government:

In respect of night sleeper rolling stock built for services through the Channel Tunnel:

  1. (a) who is the present owner of these trains:
  2. (b) how much public sector funds were spent on their construction;
  3. (c) what technical reasons prevent them operating in the United Kingdom and on the Continent;
  4. (d) whether the owner has any plans to scrap them; and
  5. (e) what attempts have been made to operate them commercially. [HL2039]

Lord Whitty

  1. (a) Metro-Cammel.
  2. (b) £109 million was paid by the Government, as guarantor, on 1 June 1998 on the early termination of the lease purchase facility, under which the trains had been built.
  3. (c) The vehicles were not completed and a number of design issues remain unsolved, including traction and safety issues.
  4. (d) and (e) These are a matter for Metro-Cammel, but if the rolling stock is sold on, European Night Services Ltd will take a share of any profit, and this will be subject to a government clawback.