John Stevenson: If he will list his official engagements for Wednesday 14 December.
Rishi Sunak: I am sure the whole House will share my sorrow at the capsizing of a small boat in the channel in the early hours of this morning, and the tragic loss of human life. Our hearts go out to all those affected, and our tributes to those involved in the extensive rescue operation.
This morning, I had meetings with ministerial colleagues and others, in addition to my duties in this House, including the visit of His Majesty the King. I shall have further such meetings later today.
John Stevenson: A three and a half hour journey takes six hours; a straight journey ends up with two changes and a diversion; a train is cancelled at short notice. This has become the experience of a west coast rail passenger. If Avanti does not get its act together, will the Government cancel its franchise?
Lindsay Hoyle: A very popular question!
Rishi Sunak: I thank my hon. Friend for raising this question, and I share the frustration that this is causing to many in his community and other communities. Our immediate priority is to support the restoration of services before making any long-term decisions on the operation of the west coast franchise, but we will be closely monitoring Avanti’s roll-out of its recovery plan and holding it to account for delivering for passengers.