HC Deb 24 October 2001 vol 373 cc233-4W
Mr. Luff

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions if he will make a statement on the re-franchising of railway services operating on the Cotswold line between Oxford and Worcester. [9503]

Mr. Jamieson

Oxford-Worcester services are predominantly provided by Thames Trains. The current franchise is not due to expire until April 2004. On 16 July the Secretary of State asked the Strategic Rail Authority to consider how improvements for passengers could be secured within existing franchises, or by negotiating short extensions. The Strategic Rail Authority has reviewed its franchise replacement programme in light of that statement and will announce its plans as agreed with Ministers in due course.