Interviews

24.06.19

Andrew 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 Radio 4's BBC’s flagship news programme that he would not rule out his organisation issuing future rail franchises

He made the admission on the station’s most popular programme Nick Robinson today (Monday) during a discussion about the Williams Rail Review into the future structure of the whole rail industry.

Mr Haines said: “The current structure of the railways is effectively outgrown. It was introduced at a time of decline in the railways, 25 years ago, but we’ve seen a doubling of passenger numbers since that time.

“The big challenge for the railways at the moment is about culminating growth, and whilst we’ve been focussing on investment, we’ve lost sight of who we’re doing for.

“I don’t really care who’s in charge as long as it’s easier to do the improvement that are needed.”

READ MORE: New Network Rail boss tells MPs he will put passengers’ interests first

He was questioned about the role of network Rail following the Williams Rail Review and asked if the organisation should be responsible for the issuing of future rail franchises.

He added: “If it meant taking things away from network rail that we currently do, I would be up for that. I think it’s completely wrong to say ‘we need change’ but it must start somewhere else.

“There’s a balance to be struck. The amount of public money going into the railway means there’s always going to be government involvement and I think it’s important that they really do set the context, the framework, and the overarching public policy.

“What we’ve got to do is take the day-to-day operation away from government and from Whitehall, whilst leaving them with the big policy choices.

“I think we can do a better job on costs. One of the reasons costs have got out of control is because suddenly the floodgates opened on investment programmes.”

“The supply chain wasn’t mature; our specification wasn’t robust and we hadn’t built our capability. We’re now delivering electrification projects at a fraction of the price that we were five years ago because we’ve built that capability and it would be good to maintain it.”

Comments

There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment

 

related

rail technology magazine tv

more videos >

latest rail news

Up to £58m funding commitment for Cardiff Central Station upgrade

22/07/2019Up to £58m funding commitment for Cardiff Central Station upgrade

Up to £58m funding to upgrade Cardiff Central Station has been confirmed today, 22 July, by the transport secretary. Subject to t... more >
RSSB: Railways crucial in UK becoming net zero-carbon by 2050

22/07/2019RSSB: Railways crucial in UK becoming net zero-carbon by 2050

The Rail Safety and Standards Board (RSSB) has said that Britain’s railways have a crucial role to play in helping the UK economy deca... more >
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 >

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 >