Virgin court bid: Legal challenges are often very time-consuming

Legal challenges are often very time-consuming and expensive and someone like Sir Richard Branson who likes to make a lot of money and not necessarily spend a lot of money wouldn't do this lightly.

In a sense though, did we ever expect him to bow out quietly and gracefully if he lost something he'd controlled and grown since 1997.

I think it's clear from most lawyers I've spoken to, the government and sources at FirstGroup tonight feel pretty confident that his case is not that great.

But the difficulty might come when any legal challenge starts chewing up a lot of time, and money.

FirstGroup needs to get this done so they're ready to take over the franchise in December.

These things are costly, complicated and the franchise system is notoriously tangled up.

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Taxpayers' £50m West Coast bill

Taxpayers will face a "significant" bill of around £50m over the West Coast rail franchise fiasco, the Government's spending watchdog has warned.