Bidders for northern rail franchises are announced

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The names of companies hoping to run rail services in the north of England from 2016 have been announced.

Arriva Rail, Abellio Northern and Govia Northern are in the running to take on the Northern franchise, with First Trans Pennine Express, Keolis Go-Ahead and Stagecoach Trans Pennine Express Trains shortlisted for the TransPennine Express routes.

A decision on winning bidders will be made in October 2015. Rail Minister Claire Perry said: “We will be asking these companies to come up with innovative and ambitious proposals that will ensure a truly world-class rail network for the region.”