East Coast Main Line

Mr Hepburn, a long-running campaigner to keep the East Coast Main Line in public hands, strongly opposes the move to hand the popular route the Virgin/Stagecoach from 1st March, despite its financial and performance success as a public service.    

The East Coast line has been in public hands since the previous private operator, National Express, pulled out in 2009 – the second time the franchise has collapsed since privatisation. 
 
Since the route was renationalised in 2009 East Coast has paid back over £1 billion to the Treasury.   
 
Labour plans to allow a state-owned operator to bid for future franchises.  The previous Labour government took the East
Coast franchise back into public ownership after two successive private franchises collapsed, creating Directly Operated
Railways.
 
Stephen Hepburn MP, who also already spoken out against the Tory-led Government’s plans in Parliament, said:
 
“Over the past six years since it was re-nationalised the East Coast mainline has gone from strength to strength and it is a disgrace that the Tories are selling it off before the election. 
 
“The Tory-led Government’s plans defy all logic and by taking East Coast out of public ownership all the government is doing is passing the income the line raises into the back pockets of the profiteers!”
 

Meet your MP

 Stephen-Hepburn-MP

Stephen Hepburn has served the Jarrow Constituency as MP since 1997.

He was last elected to serve in June 2017 and won the seat with a conclusive 17,263 majority.

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