Broader Ideas for Cross-Channel Trains
There are several ways in which our aim of Kent cross-channel train services could me met.
- Persuading Eurostar that it is in interest to restart services at Ashford and/or Ebbsfleet. To this end Kent County Council are conducting a survey of businesses to find out how they have been affected by the loss of Kent’s international services. They hope to convince Eurostar that they will do more business if they offer services in Kent. Ashford MP Damian Green is also persuading the UK Government to use all its resources to put pressure on Eurostar to honour the investment made by the Kent stations to accommodate their trains.
- Working with other operators who are trying to enter the cross-channel rail market. The most recent of these is the Spanish-owned rail operator Evolyn, who have commissioned trains from the manufacturer Alstrom which they plan to send through the tunnel. Although Evolyn do not at present have plans to stop at stations in Kent, they will be welcome competition for Eurostar.
- A “shuttle” or local train operating between Ashford and Lille, two regional stations that sit at the centre of excellent excellent local networks as well as fast onward links to capital cities. One candidate for this may be the existing HS1 Javelins, if they could be upgraded to the fire safety requirements of the tunnel (of if the tunnel fire safety standards were lowered). Another possibility might be occasional excursion trains used for toursim.
- Working with like-minded people in northern France on local links to include the station of Calais Fréthun, equally overlooked by Eurostar.
Last updated on October 31st, 2023