Latest Rail News

21.09.16

‘Swift’ smart card launch marks first multimodal ticket roll-out outside London

Smart ticketing has reached the West Midlands as the new Swift cards were launched across the rail network yesterday.

The Swift cards, already used on the region’s buses and trams, are now operating on London Midland, Virgin, Chiltern and CrossCountry services, with 3,000 passengers currently signed up to the direct debit scheme.

The cards can be used at ticket barriers at Snow Hill, University and Five Ways stations in Birmingham (operated by London Midland), New Street, Birmingham International and Coventry (operated by Virgin), and Moor Street (operated by Chiltern).

Laura Shoaf, managing director of Transport for the West Midlands (TfWM), said: “We are the first transport body outside London to deliver a truly multimodal smart ticketing solution that does not require a paper counterpart, and this is just the start.

“Swift offers a range of benefits for the passenger and over the coming months we will be working closely with London Midland and the Department for Transport to identify and develop ways of expanding it still further.”

She added that the next step is to move the 12,000 passengers using nTrain – the local rail-only season ticket – onto Swift, as well as agreeing a smart ticketing arrangement across the Midlands as a whole with Midlands Connect.

The Birmingham launch ceremony for the Swift card, which was funded by a £620,000 grant from the Department for Transport, was attended by transport minister Andrew Jones, who said: “Smart ticketing is revolutionising public transport and I welcome this significant new development in the West Midlands.

“It is important that people can get on and get around and the Swift card is helping cement a modern, affordable transport network that provides better journeys for everyone.”

Richard Brooks, London Midland commercial director, added: “This is a great initiative by TfWM.

“At London Midland we believe passionately in making travel simple for everyone. Having a single smart card that works on trains, buses and Metro will make passengers’ lives easier and encourage more use of public transport across the region.”

London Midland is in the process of bidding to continue operating the West Midlands franchise, competing against West Midlands Trains (owned by Abellio with East Japan Railway Company and Mitsui & Co Ltd as minority partners).

Paul Maynard, the new rail minister, has said smart ticketing should be introduced “in a timely fashion”, while the Urban Transport Group used its recent policy paper to argue for the introduction of Oyster card-style smart tickets in urban areas – something which Transport for the North is currently looking into.

(Image c. Transport for the West Midlands)

Have you got a story to tell? Would you like to become a PSE columnist? If so, click here.

 

 

 

Comments

Jerry Alderson   23/09/2016 at 15:20

Re: "a truly multimodal smart ticketing solution that does not require a paper counterpart." I don't understand the reference about *not* needing a paper counterpart. I have a Swift card and have usedit on Midland Metro. I paid with the smartcard for a day-ticket and was given a receipt/ticket. When boarding another tram later that day I was completely confused until it was explained to me that I had to show the paper ticket - not the smartcard. I almost paid twice! I mention this in an article in Rail Professional in the October edition.

Mike Duncombe   26/09/2016 at 11:45

This is not the first - MCard in West Yorkshire has had a multi-modal rail / bus period pass on smartcards available for a couple of years.

Add your comment

 

rail technology magazine tv

more videos >

latest rail news

Battered stretch of West Coast main line gets £4m repairs after landslide

23/11/2017Battered stretch of West Coast main line gets £4m repairs after landslide

Network Rail have completed £4m worth of work to stabilise embankments after a stretch of line between Watford and King’s Langley suf... more >
Hammond pledges £250m to West Midlands transport in second devo deal

23/11/2017Hammond pledges £250m to West Midlands transport in second devo deal

A new devolution deal has secured £250m of funding for the West Midlands transport infrastructure. The deal between the government and the... more >
NAO: Rail network ‘cannot reliably support’ new Thameslink services

23/11/2017NAO: Rail network ‘cannot reliably support’ new Thameslink services

The current state of the rail network is not fit to support the new Thameslink Programme and will cause future delays and problems. It has b... more >

editor's comment

21/11/2017Keep up, we’re moving on

There has never been a more exciting time to write about rail: technology is improving, ways of working are changing and pan-industry collaboration is at its peak, all in an effort to keep up with unprecedented levels of demand. I am therefore thrilled to present you my first-ever edition as editor of RTM, which I am confident is bursting at the seams with excellent contributions from leaders across the board. One of the special feature... read more >

rail industry focus

View all News

interviews

Modernising journeys in north east England

09/11/2017Modernising journeys in north east England

First Hull Trains is about to embark on the biggest fleet overhaul it has delivered since being set up in 2000. Managing director Will Dunnett te... more >
Ian Prosser: Safety by design

02/11/2017Ian Prosser: Safety by design

Ian Prosser, the ORR’s chief inspector of railways and director of railway safety, outlines to RTM’s Josh Mines the key challenges fa... more >
A complete step change for sleeper travel

26/10/2017A complete step change for sleeper travel

Ahead of the roll-out of new Caledonian Sleeper rolling stock next year, the company’s chairman, Peter Strachan, tells RTM’s Josh Min... 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. ... more > more last word articles >

'the sleepers' daily blog

Eurotunnel rebrand: a more ‘Anglo-Saxon’ name?

21/11/2017Eurotunnel rebrand: a more ‘Anglo-Saxon’ name?

The owners of Eurotunnel have decided to change its name to Getlink, a move which the company described as “very Anglo-Saxon.” D... more >
read more blog posts from 'the sleeper' >

comment

Boosting workforce safety through design automation

17/11/2017Boosting workforce safety through design automation

David Shipman, innovations engineering manager in IP Signalling at Network Rail, makes the case for safeguarding the industry’s workforce t... more >
Rail risk: reality and perception

17/11/2017Rail risk: reality and perception

George Bearfield, director of system safety and health at the RSSB, looks at risk – reality and perception – and how the industry nee... more >
The new era of station retail

17/11/2017The new era of station retail

Hamish Kiernan, commercial director of retail at Network Rail Property, explains how investment in better retail outlets is transforming the cust... more >
Digital connectivity fit for the 2020s

17/11/2017Digital connectivity fit for the 2020s

Raj Sivalingam, executive director for telecommunications and spectrum at techUK, makes the case for pan-industry collaboration in order to deplo... more >