Latest Rail News

22.12.15

ORR’s chief exec to step down in early 2016

Richard Price is to step down as chief executive of the Office of Rail and Road (ORR) early in the New Year. 

Price, who joined the ORR board in 2011 on a five-year fixed-term contract, will be replaced on an interim basis by Joanna Whittington, the regulator’s executive director of railway markets and economics. 

It is expected that Whittington, who joined the ORR board in March 2014, will take up the post on 16 January, allowing for a handover period before Price leaves the organisation. 

The announcement is the second major senior management change in as many weeks for the ORR, with the transport secretary last week appointing Prof Stephen Glaister as interim chair following Anna Walker’s departure. 

An open competition for the role of chief executive will be advertised in due course. 

Paul Plummer, chief executive of the Rail Delivery Group, representing train operators and Network Rail, thanked Price for his contribution to the rail industry, which has helped make Britain’s railway one of the safest in Europe. 

“A strong, independent regulator is vital not only to the safe and effective running of Britain’s railway but also to ensure that the industry is accountable and that its plans are realistic,” he added. 

Price added that it has been a privilege to head the ORR. “The last five years have seen have seen big changes to the ORR, a step-up in its professionalism and engagement, and an expanded remit including monitoring England’s national road network and economic regulation of the Channel Tunnel,” he said. 

“I wish Stephen Glaister, Joanna Whittington, and the staff of the ORR all the very best for the future in pursuing these goals.”

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