Grand Central currently offers services from London King's Cross to Bradford, Halifax and Sunderland, serving 700,000 passengers per year. The acquisition adds to Arriva's existing portfolio of British operators which includes the CrossCountry, Arriva Trains Wales, and Chiltern Railways franchises, and concessions to operate the Tyne and Wear Metro, and as a joint venture, London Overground.
Mr Tom Clift, Grand Central's managing director says that that the deal opens a brand new chapter for Grand Central and other open access operators using Britain's railways. Clift will now report to Arriva UK Trains managing director, Mr Bob Holland who says that it's Arriva's intention to develop Grand Central "to become a key commercial part of our British rail operations."
"We firmly believe open access will play a valuable part of a balanced portfolio for our UK Trains division alongside our three franchises and concessions," he says DB acquired Arriva in August 2010 and is now using the brand for its international regional passenger services.