On the right track?
From the Department for Transport website:
The firms bidding to take over the franchises have been chosen following a pre-qualification process.
Bidders for Great Western franchise:
•First Great Western Trains Limited (FirstGroup plc)
•GW Trains Limited (Arriva UK Trains Limited - DB (UK) Investments Limited)
•NXGW Trains Limited (National Express Group PLC)
•Stagecoach Great Western Trains Limited (Stagecoach Group plc)
These potential providers will receive the Invitation to Tender which is anticipated will be issued in May 2012. It is anticipated that the successful bidder will be announced in December 2012, with the contract commencing in April 2013. The length of the franchise term will be 15 years.
It'll be fascinating to see what impact, if any, the lobbying of councils in Cornwall and Devon, the Members of Parliament and various business interests have on the final product.