High Speed 1

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Finance, operate, and maintain a high-speed rail link for the UK Department of Transport

High Speed 1 (HS1) is the rail link between London St Pancras station and the Channel tunnel. It is currently the UK’s only high-speed rail line in operation. The concessionaire, High Speed 1 Ltd, operates and maintains the track and four stations along the route under a 30-year-concession granted by the UK Secretary of State for Transport. The concession agreement expires on 31 December 2040.

The 109km-long rail line allows journey times between central London and Paris of only 2 hours and 15 minutes. Domestically, HS1 has reduced the travel time for the 90km train journey between London St Pancras and Ashford (Kent) to only 36 minutes. This is around half the travel time on the classic network (69 minutes).


Eurostar services operating on HS1 since 2003 enjoy a market share for city-to-city travel between London and Paris and London and Brussels in excess of 80% (excluding transfer traffic). Domestic high-speed services under the Southeastern High Speed (SEHS) brand became fully operational in December 2009. SEHS services continue to enjoy strong passenger demand, with passenger growth exceeding that observed elsewhere on the Southeastern franchise.

More information on the company can be found at www.highspeed1.co.uk

HICL’s acquisition of the project reached financial close in September 2017. HICL acquired the project as part of a consortium of UK and international long-term investors.