Danish State Railways has been named by the Strategic Rail Authority as one of the four bidders for the new Integrated Kent Franchise.

The other three are: GNER Holdings, First Kent Integrated Railways (FirstGroup plc) and London South Eastern Railway (a consortium of Go-Ahead Group and Keolis).

The Strategic Rail Authority plans to combine services on the Channel Tunnel rail link with existing rail services in Kent.

The bidders must show the SRA how they would operate services on the existing network from 2005 with the addition of domestic services on the Channel Tunnel Rail Link from 2007.

Services on the South East network transferred in November 2003 from Connex to South Eastern Trains, acting on behalf of the SRA. Once the IKF competition is complete, South Eastern Trains will hand over operations to the successful bidder for the Integrated Kent Franchise.

Information from the SRA. www.sra.gov.uk