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McAllister to lead Railtrack turnaround

The Government is expected to announce later today the appointment of Ian McAllister, Ford of Britain chairman, to lead the effort to revitalise Railtrack as a not-for-profit organisation. The Department of Transport, Local Government and the Regions is expected to release a statement shortly. Ford has declined to comment.

However, secretary of state Stephen Byers said earlier this month that the new body will not be able to take control of the collapsed company until after the administrators have finished unravelling Railtrack's accounts, which could take at least six month. But he has stressed the changes present "a golden opportunity for a new beginning," for Britain's rail industry.

The Government called in the administrators in October.

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