10m annual passengers for Eurostar

This Is Lancashire: A Eurostar train travels through Ashford in Kent A Eurostar train travels through Ashford in Kent

Channel Tunnel high-speed train company Eurostar has reached the the 10-million mark for annual passengers for the first time.

The company carried 10.1 million travellers in 2013 - a 2% increase on the figure for 2012.

Last year was the 10th successive year in which passenger numbers have grown and the company has now carried 140 million passengers since it started in 1994.

Eurostar, which runs 186mph trains between London and Paris and Brussels, also reported that its 2013 sales revenue had risen 7% to £857 million, while operating profit was up 4% to £54 million.

Eurostar chief executive Nicolas Petrovic said: "2013 has proved to be a record-breaking year for Eurostar and we are pleased with the sustainable growth in both traveller numbers and sales revenues reported today.

"After a period of economic uncertainty we are now starting to see more confidence in the business market. In comparison with this time last year when the overriding sentiment was still very cautious there are more encouraging trends and in some sectors there is clearly a greater appetite to invest and look for business."

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