“If this viable business is allowed to fall between the cracks of support – neither an airline, nor a domestic railway – our recovery could be damaged. London and the UK would lose out both economically and reputationally. Eurostar currently employs 1,200 people in the UK, with a further 1,500 jobs directly provided by the Eurostar supply chain. But the value and impact of this link extends much further. Students from France account for 1 in every 9 of those from the EU currently studying in London, many of whom benefit from the option to travel via rail rather than air. Taking the train not only has important environmental benefits, which should not be underestimated as the UK seeks to lead the world at COP26, but it is how nearly 4 in every 5 passengers choose to make their journeys between London and Paris/ Brussels.
“Eurostar is not asking for special treatment. We urge you to ensure that they have equal access to financial support as companies in similar positions – at the very least this should include business rates relief and access to Government loans. Maintaining this international high-speed rail connection into the heart of London has never been more important. Having left the European Union, we need to actively set out our stall as an attractive destination for people to live, work and play. Safeguarding the future of this connection to the continent should be a symbol of both our desire to build back better and our new cooperative relationship with our European neighbours.”