Rail franchises operators & contracts

GTR could be broken up by DfT to combat repeated strike action

GTR could be broken up by DfT to combat repeated strike action

06.11.17: The Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) franchise could be broken up in 2021 when its contract comes up for renewal, the government has said today. The move may help to reduce strike action across Thameslink, Southern and Great Northern (TSGN) n...

Arriva out of running for Wales and Border franchise

Arriva out of running for Wales and Border franchise

31.10.17: Arriva Trains Wales are no longer competing to run the next Wales and Border Franchise, after the company withdrew their bid today. The company – along with Abellio Rail Cymru, KeolisAmey and MTR Corporation – were invited to su...

RDG launches ‘single plan’ for railway with unions, operators and businesses

RDG launches ‘single plan’ for railway with unions, operators and businesses

30.10.17: Almost £85bn of additional economic benefits are hoped to be secured by a landmark collaboration between unions, TOCs and freight operators, the Rail Delivery Group (RDG) has today stated. The figure is on top of the £31bn of econo...

London Midland’s West Coast services to be renamed London Northwestern

London Midland’s West Coast services to be renamed London Northwestern

27.10.17: The group behind the new West Midlands franchise have today announced that the west coast service will be called London Northwestern. Abellio, JR East and Mitsui have chosen the name as a tribute to the London and North Western Railway &nda...

RMT announces nationwide series of strikes across six franchises

RMT announces nationwide series of strikes across six franchises

25.10.17: The RMT have announced further strike action across six operators over separate disputes. In protest over what it deems as an attack on the role of the guard and the extension of Driver Only Operation, the union has confirmed strikes across th...

Forres station to ‘transform’ Scottish rail travel

Forres station to ‘transform’ Scottish rail travel

23.10.17: Scotland’s newest station has been officially opened as part of the Aberdeen-Inverness Improvement Project. It is hoped that the project, funded by the Scottish Government, will transform rail travel between the two cities and slash journ...

RIA: Rail finance figures for 2016-17 represent ‘big opportunity’

RIA: Rail finance figures for 2016-17 represent ‘big opportunity’

11.10.17: The RIA have today stated that the latest ORR annual statistical report indicates a “big opportunity” for suppliers. The report shows that while government funding was down 12.6% compared to 2015-16, private investment had a rea...

UTG: Rail investment ‘high value for money’

UTG: Rail investment ‘high value for money’

11.10.17: Investment in the regional rail network can represent “high value for money” as well as providing “transformative benefits” to surrounding areas, a report from the Urban Transport Group (UTG) has concluded. The new s...

Sheffield business leaders voice key concerns for East Midlands franchise

Sheffield business leaders voice key concerns for East Midlands franchise

10.10.17: A group of Sheffield organisations has sent a letter to the government listing 10 priorities to focus on ahead of the upcoming rail franchise bid. The group consists of Sheffield City Region (SCR) LEP, South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Ex...

RMT prepares to strike against fifth TOC, South Western

RMT prepares to strike against fifth TOC, South Western

04.10.17: The RMT has this week extended its dispute with TOCs over driver-only operated trains to a fifth operator, South Western Railway (SWR). The news comes a day after union leaders accused the government of “sabotaging” a deal being...

ORR invites views on TOC access charges reform

ORR invites views on TOC access charges reform

29.09.17: The Office of Road and Rail (ORR) has released details about the consultation into the charges that operators pay to access the rail network as part of Network Rail’s 2018 periodic review. Access charges play an important role in infl...

TOCs invited to submit late franchise tenders as Wales promises more staff

TOCs invited to submit late franchise tenders as Wales promises more staff

29.09.17: The Welsh Government has today invited final tenders for the next Wales and Borders franchise, which is expected to include more staff and a safety critical guard on all services. This comes despite the fact that it has failed to reach an a...

First Hull performance drops while Caledonian takes the lead in period 5

First Hull performance drops while Caledonian takes the lead in period 5

12.09.17: First Hull Trains had a poor month for punctuality over August and September, as Network Rail’s PPM figures for period 5 showed that it has slipped to become the worst-performing operator. Less than three-quarters (74.9%) of its train...

Go-Ahead profits slump under poor Southern performance

Go-Ahead profits slump under poor Southern performance

07.09.17: The company behind Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR), the Go-Ahead Group, has today reported a slowdown in its operating profits partially due to strike action on Southern services. Operating profits for the company slipped by 12%, from 162.6m...

East Midlands Trains passengers raise concern about ‘rickety’ rolling stock

East Midlands Trains passengers raise concern about ‘rickety’ rolling stock

06.09.17: Passengers have revealed that their main area of concern ahead of the new East Midlands franchise being awarded is that of the age and quality of the rolling stock, new research has shown. The East Midlands Trains (EMT) passenger research...

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Network Rail’s subsidiary secures systems integrator contract in Australia

14/12/2018Network Rail’s subsidiary secures systems integrator contract in Australia

The Australian subsidiary of Network Rail Consulting has been named as the systems integrator for the Digital Systems Program in Sydney by Transp... more >
Infrastructure giant Amey to be sold to private equity firm in new year

14/12/2018Infrastructure giant Amey to be sold to private equity firm in new year

 Infrastructure giant Amey is expected to be sold to a private equity firm in the new year, according to reports. The Financial Times b... more >
HS2 and Crossrail suppliers admit to running ‘illegal cartel’ for 7 years

14/12/2018HS2 and Crossrail suppliers admit to running ‘illegal cartel’ for 7 years

Two UK rail suppliers to major projects such as HS1, HS2, and Crossrail have admitted to operating an illegal cartel for almost seven years with ... 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

Spotlight on Coventry Very Light Rail

27/11/2018Spotlight on Coventry Very Light Rail

Olivia Brown, business development officer at Warwick Manufacturing Group (WMG), an academic department of the University of Warwick, outlines the four exciting projects currently taking place as part of the Coventry Very Light Rail (VLR)  programme. In RTM’s June/July issue, readers were introduced to the concept of VLR and th... more >
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Passenger safety: Respect the edge

27/11/2018Passenger safety: Respect the edge

Claire Coward, communications lead at the RSSB, discusses her organisation’s latest passenger safety campaign. Incidents at the platfo... more >
Night Tube: The twilight economy

27/11/2018Night Tube: The twilight economy

Dr David Lutton, executive director of economy and tax at London First, argues that the capital’s night-time economy is just starting its j... more >
Monitoring the performance of earthworks

27/11/2018Monitoring the performance of earthworks

Dr Joel Smethurst, associate professor in geotechnical engineering, and Professor William Powrie, professor of geotechnical engineering, both of ... more >
Introducing iPort

20/11/2018Introducing iPort

Steve Freeman, managing director of iPort Rail, introduces the UK’s newest inland freight terminal. The UK’s newest inland rail ... more >

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HS2 train race: making the case

20/11/2018HS2 train race: making the case

Bombardier and Hitachi’s commitment to providing the best HS2 rolling stock pitch to the government was signified with the launch of their ... more >