YORK headquartered national rail operator Grand Central is celebrating 10 years in business.

The company marked the decade milestone at Kings Cross station in London, where long-serving Grand Central colleagues got together to mark the 10th anniversary with a specially made celebration cake.

Bosses at the firm, which has been part of Arriva since 2011, said going forward they plan to increase the current 18 trains a day, stop at more stations on their routes.

The train operating company, which operates two routes linking 15 stations in the North East and Yorkshire with London, covers more than 1.5million train miles and carries more than 1.4million passenger journeys every year.

Richard McClean, managing director at Grand Central, said: “I am very proud of our track record and I’d like to thank all our customers, partners and colleagues for their support over the last decade.

“This 10th anniversary is a big deal for us and we’re delighted to be able to share it with our customers and colleagues as they have been critical to the success of our journey so far.

“As we look forward to 2018 and to the next decade of our history, we have ambitious plans and are facing some exciting times ahead.

“Alongside significant investment in our trains, we will be seeking to grow our business, running more trains and calling at more stations.”

Grand Central, which has its York offices in Rougier Street, employs more than 150 staff as well as 59 volunteer station ambassadors.

The firm’s maiden voyage left Sunderland for London Kings Cross on December 17 2007. It’s current operating licence was extended in 2014 and now runs until 2026.

Grand Central operates train services on its North East route services between Sunderland, Hartlepool, Eaglescliffe, Northallerton, Thirsk, York and London Kings Cross