In the letter, they state that Alstom Engineering is ready to manufacture the trains at its site in Derby. TfL will need the trains when Old Oak Common becomes the terminus of High Speed 2 (HS2). However, TfL can not place the order without the government funding, and without the order, skilled Alstom jobs in Derby, and in its supply chain, are at risk.
The additional trains will enable TfL to operate more trains to Old Oak Common, reducing waiting times and train crowding. The letter also sets out how the enhanced service will benefit the local community.
The full text of the letter is as follows:
Dear Secretary of State,
We are jointly writing to ask you to help save jobs and support growth in the East Midlands and London.
Alstom Engineering is ready to deliver additional Class 345 Elizabeth line trains, needed to enable effective operation while Old Oak Common is the terminus of High Speed 2 (HS2). However, in order for Transport for London (TfL) to place the order, we need you to urgently confirm funding for these trains.
Without this commitment, TfL is not able to place an order within Alstom's remaining production window to manufacture the trains in Derby, which will result in the demobilisation of Alstom's production facilities for the AVENTRA platform of trains.Alstom's manufacturing facility in Derby, the UK's largest train factory, is already facing a production gap and job uncertainty due to the delay to the production of trains for HS2. This places approximately 1,300 production and support jobs at risk directly in Derby, with further knock-on impacts for Alstom's supply chain, as 78 per cent of its suppliers are based in the UK and Ireland. Alstom's workforce and supply chain is highly skilled, mobilised and ready to deliver now.
At the same time, in London, HS2 terminating at Old Oak Common places additional stresses on the Elizabeth line. The additional trains will enable TfL to operate a higher frequency of services to Old Oak Common to relieve wait times at the station, reduce crowding on trains and provide shorter journey times for more customers using Old Oak Common station. Relying on the existing services on the Western Route would undercut the benefits brought by introducing high speed rail travel between Birmingham and London; it would be detrimental to the local area,as it would fail to cater for the growing community around the station which has 26,000 homes and 56,000 new jobs in the pipeline; and the consequences would extend to the national economy. The full case for investment is set out in TfL's recent funding submission to your department, which has been the subject of in-depth discussions with your officials.
To stop this happening, TfL must have confirmation of funding from Government to allow it to place the order. Given the small size of the order required, delaying it would require Alstom to mobilise a new production facility at a much higher cost. If we miss the opportunity with Alstom, it may be impossible to achieve elsewhere and HS2 will not achieve the programme aspirations for Old Oak Common. It is essential that Government provides assurance that this will not be a potential outcome.
We are jointly ready to work collaboratively with Ministers, and we encourage you to quickly convene the relevant parties to progress a way forward at pace.
We look forward to hearing from you shortly.
Andy Lord, Transport Commissioner
Nick Crossfield, Managing Director, Alstom
Sharon Graham, General Secretary, Unite