Crossrail

26.10.18

Crossrail investigation should ‘absolutely’ be launched if delay claims are true, assembly transport chair says

The Crossrail board, London mayor Sadiq Khan and TfL should absolutely face a Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) investigation if claims of misleading Londoners during the discovery of the Crossrail delay are true, according to the London Assembly’s transport committee chair, Caroline Pidgeon.

“This is really serious stuff,” Pidgeon said. “We feel on the assembly that the mayor misled Londoners, misled the assembly about when he really knew about the delays to this project. They may well have misled the London Stock Exchange (LSE) and there are serious penalties from that which could be issued by the FCA if they should choose. It does suggest to me that they’re taking this seriously and they may well want to investigate.”

In an interview with RTM, Caroline Pidgeon MBE said it is “hugely frustrating” that the mayor of London aims to be a transparent and open mayor, yet on Wednesday held a meeting between London transport bosses and the Crossrail board behind closed doors.

Earlier this month, the London Assembly accused the decision-makers behind the £15.4bn project of misleading Londoners over the Crossrail delay announced at the end of August. The transport committee argued that despite definitively being told of the nine-month delay on 19 July, TfL made a statement to the London Stock Exchange five days after that made no reference to the delays.

Last week the transport committee wrote to the FCA notifying them of the “grave discrepancies” between accounts from those behind Crossrail, and the financial regulator shortly after announced it was considering an investigation into the claims.

When asked whether a full investigation into the claims is necessary, Pidgeon said: “If they have potentially misled the market, then yes absolutely. Any private company would be looked into and just because they’re public, there’s no excuse for this poor practice.

“It’s very clear from the evidence my committee has received, that from May/June it has been unlikely that Crossrail will open—that is what the chair of Crossrail has told us. And in July they told those sponsors that it was very unlikely that it would open on time. To have not made this clear when the statement went out to the markets, surely it is of great concern and the FCA should investigate it.”

Pidgeon noted that following the closed-doors meeting yesterday, it would be a “very strong message” from Sadiq Khan if future meetings were held in public.

“Given that this project is over budget and over time, Londoners and the public deserve some answers to find out what extra money is going to be needed, when will this railway line open, and to have confidence in Crossrail going forward, and that’s why we really would urge the mayor to have far more meetings in public—yes you might want to talk about the actual fiscal figures in private, but the general discussion can still be in public if they want it to be.”

Earlier this month a group of MPs called for Crossrail to be expanded to Kent and connected to HS1.

Enjoying RTM? Subscribe here to receive our weekly news updates or click here to receive a copy of the magazine!

Comments

There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment

 

rail technology magazine tv

more videos >

latest rail news

Rail North Partnership review sets out recommendations

19/07/2019Rail North Partnership review sets out recommendations

A review of the Rail North Partnership, headed by Leeds Council leader cllr Judith Blake and rail minister Andrew Jones, has set out recommendati... more >
TfL announces 4G for London Underground in 2020

19/07/2019TfL announces 4G for London Underground in 2020

Transport for London (TfL) have announced that 4G will be available on parts of the London Underground from March 2020. The eastern half of ... more >
Study of light rail finds Manchester Metrolink one of best in the world

19/07/2019Study of light rail finds Manchester Metrolink one of best in the world

An international study of light rail systems has identified Metrolink as one of the best in the world. The system was rated as fifth best in... more >

editor's comment

23/01/2018Out with the old...

Despite a few disappointing policy announcements, especially for the electrification aficionados amongst us, 2017 was, like Darren Caplan writes on page 20, a year generally marked by positive news for the rail industry. We polished off the iconic Ordsall Chord (p32), hit some solid milestones on Thameslink (p40), progressed on ambitious rolling stock orders (p16), and finally started moving forward on HS2 (p14) ‒ paving the way for a New Ye... read more >

last word

Encouraging youngsters to be safe on the railway

Encouraging youngsters to be safe on the railway

This summer, Arriva Group's CrossCountry and the Scout Association joined to launch a new partnership to promote rail safety among young people. Chris Leech MBE, business community manager at the... more > more last word articles >

'the sleepers' daily blog

Apprentice to Co-leading the Rail Sector Deal

05/06/2019Apprentice to Co-leading the Rail Sector Deal

In a series of Q&A’s with key speakers on the run up to TransCityRail Midlands, we caught up with TransCityRail panellist and Amey’s commercial account director, Anna Delvecchio, for her insight into what the Rail Sector Deal means for the rail industry and its supply chain. Anna started her career as an apprentice at the age o... more >
read more blog posts from 'the sleeper' >

comment

The challenge of completing Crossrail

05/07/2019The challenge of completing Crossrail

With a new plan now in place to deliver Crossrail, Hedley Ayres, National Audit Office manager, major projects and programmes, takes a look at ho... more >
Preparing the industry to deliver trains for the future

04/07/2019Preparing the industry to deliver trains for the future

The move to decarbonise the rail network involves shifting to cleaner modes of traction by 2050. David Clarke, technical director at the Railway ... more >
Sunshine future beckons for South Wales Railways, says 10:10 Climate Action’s Leo Murray

02/07/2019Sunshine future beckons for South Wales Railways, says 10:10 Climate Action’s Leo Murray

Smart electrification is the way to boost clean energy resources, argues Leo Murray, director at 10:10 Climate Action. Contractors are clear... more >
Ambition doesn’t have to be expensive, says Midland Connect's Maria Machancoses

02/07/2019Ambition doesn’t have to be expensive, says Midland Connect's Maria Machancoses

The TCR Midlands conference is only days away and tickets are going fast for the sector event of the year at the Vox Conference Centre in Birming... more >

rail industry focus

View all News

interviews

Andrew Haines, CE of Network Rail, tells BBC News his organisation could issue future rail franchises

24/06/2019Andrew Haines, CE of Network Rail, tells BBC News his organisation could issue future rail franchises

By Ewan Quayle, Rail Technology Magazine Reporter Andrew Haines, the Chief Executive of Network Rail, has told the Today programme on R... more >