The reasons why night sleeper trains are disappearing from across Europe

A fascinating, well-written piece on why night sleeper trains are disappearing across Europe. 

 The full article:

Here are some quotes from it:

What was a coherent network, which nightly and confidently spanned the continent, is becoming an increasingly ragged, bleary-eyed, and vulnerable shadow of its former self. Starved of cross-subsidy and financial support whilst billions are pumped into high speed rail and aviation dodges its environmental on-costs”.

Sleeper trains are a remnant of when the railways were long distance and international travel – but also a statement of future intent. That in a world where cheap flights cannot last forever (because ultimately either they, or the planet, has to go) that the railways have the vaulting ambition to be part of the solution. A universal offer of trains that not only go fast in the day, but also go bump in the night. Available for those who cannot, or do not wish to fly. Enabling rail to cover all the bases. An extra string to the traveller’s bow. Another tool with which to chip away at the carbon edifice we know has to be scaled back”.



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Over 15,000 people turned up during the weekend.  Campaigners have recently lost a number of court cases they took to prevent a new airport being built but they intend to appeal.  There is also a belief that President Hollande will not give permission for the new runway to be built before the 2017 French Presidential election.  He will not want a major environmental battle before the election.

Campaigners argue that the new airport would damage the environment and makes no economic sense.