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(1)If, in the case of any place or places to and from which railway passenger services are for the time being provided by the Railways Board, the Minister is satisfied—
(a)that those services are unremunerative ; and
(b)that it is desirable for social or economic reasons that railway passenger services to and from the place or places in question should for the time being continue to be provided either in the same or in some different form or manner ; and
(c)that because of the unremunerative nature of the services which the Minister is satisfied are desirable for those reasons (hereafter in this section referred to as " the required services ") the Board cannot reasonably be expected to provide them without assistance under this section,
then, subject to the provisions of this section, the Minister may from time to time with the consent of the Treasury undertake to make grants to the Board in respect of the provision of the required services for such period not exceeding three years at a time as the Minister may think fit.
(2)The Minister may on giving an undertaking under subsection (1) of this section as respects any period attach to that undertaking such conditions in connection with the provision of the required services during that period, and such other conditions in connection with the grants to be made in pursuance of the undertaking, as he thinks fit.
(3)The aggregate amount payable by way of grants in pursuance of an undertaking under subsection (1) of this section in respect of the period to which the undertaking relates shall, subject to any conditions attached to the undertaking, be the amount by which it is estimated, on such basis and in such manner as the Minister, with the approval of the Treasury and after consultation with the Railways Board, may determine, that the expenditure properly attributable to the provision during that period of the required services will exceed the revenue properly so attributable; and payments in pursuance of the undertaking shall be made in such manner and at such times as the Minister may with the approval of the Treasury determine.
(4)If, in the case of any railway passenger service for the time being provided by the Railways Board, the second publication required by section 56(7) of the Act of 1962 of notice of a proposal by the Board to discontinue that service (whether or not the notice also relates to other services) has been effected before 1st January 1969, the Minister may, with the approval of the Treasury, and subject to such conditions as he thinks fit, make grants to the Board in respect of the provision of that service for the period beginning with 1st January 1969 and ending with whichever of the following dates falls first, namely—
(a)31st December 1969 ;
(b)the date when the service is discontinued ;
(c)if the discontinuance requires the consent of the Minister under the said section 56 or under section 54(4) of this Act and the Minister refuses his consent, the date when the Minister notifies the Board of his refusal;
and subsection (3) of this section shall apply for the purposes of this subsection as if—
(i)the grant under this subsection were a grant in pursuance of an undertaking under subsection (1) of this section ;
(ii)any reference to the period to which the undertaking relates were a reference to the period for which the grant under this subsection is payable ;
(iii)any conditions subject to which the grant under this subsection is made were conditions attached to the undertaking; and
(iv)the reference to the required services were a reference to the service in relation to which the grant under this subsection is made.
(5)The report of the Railways Board under section 27(8) of the Act of 1962 for any year in respect of which payments fall to be made to the Board by way of grants under this section shall include a statement—
(a)of what is estimated as aforesaid to be the collective financial result for that year, apart from those payments, of all railway passenger services in respect of which those payments fall to be made ; and
(b)the aggregate amount of such payments falling to be made in respect of that year; and
(c)in the case of each undertaking for the time being in force under subsection (1) and each service in respect of which grant is for the time being payable under subsection (4) of this section, the amount falling to be paid in respect of that year in pursuance of that undertaking or by way of such grant,
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