Stagecoach wins its subsidy dispute against government

TRANSPORT group Stagecoach has said it expects its South Western Trains division to be profitable this year after it gained a partial victory in its subsidy dispute with the government.

The dispute centred around the timing of government subsidies the group receives, but a rail arbitrator agreed with Stagecoach saying these should be for the full fiscal year ending in March 2011. The Department for Transport (DfT) had argued these calculations should start from February 2011.

But it was only a partial victory as the arbitrator agreed with the DfT that car parking revenue should be included in these calculations. Stagecoach said the decision meant its rail division would remain profitable in the year to the end of April 2011.