As reported in this morning’s Sheffield Star newspaper, former Sheffield MP Richard Caborn has called for an inquiry into full details of the £1.15m deal by which operator Stagecoach took over the Sheffield Supertram system — deals which called for construction debts to be written off.
As the newspaper notes, Mr. Caborn brokered the agreements but says he was not aware of the full details. It also seems Mr. Caborn’s appeal comes the day after revelations by the newspaper that Stagecoach has paid no rent for Supertram since taking over and may not do so over the lifetime of its 27-year contract (which expires in 2024), despite the network now making a profit.
Mr. Caborn maintains the operation “was taken on by Stagecoach as a risk,” noting that the system had been “massively under-utilised and the debt was a big issue.”
Sheffield Council leader Paul Scriven, meanwhile, said the deal “allows a company to make a tidy profit while taxpayers are sold down the river,” and would like to see the contract renegotiated, the paper reported.