Rail franchises operators & contracts

EU sets final deadline for Siemens and Alstom merger

EU sets final deadline for Siemens and Alstom merger

07.09.18: The European Commission has set a deadline of 28 January for the proposed rail merger of Siemens and Alstom. The deal was agreed last September but has been met by objections from the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission and the O...

Go-Ahead blames timetable fiasco on ‘industry failure’ as firm set to pay out millions

Go-Ahead blames timetable fiasco on ‘industry failure’ as firm set to pay out millions

06.09.18: The operator of Southern and Thameslink has revealed it expects to pay out “millions” in compensation to passengers affected by its May timetable chaos. The Go-Ahead Group said it is contacting tens of thousands of affected cust...

Potential rail franchise shake-up in the works as PM pushes for review

Potential rail franchise shake-up in the works as PM pushes for review

05.09.18: The government is considering leading what has been described as the biggest review of the UK’s rail franchising system for two decades in efforts to prevent collapses such as that of the East Coast franchise back in May. According to...

LNER: Business as usual

LNER: Business as usual

04.09.18: On 24 June, the operation of the East Coast Main Line (ECML) service transferred from Virgin Trains East Coast to the newly-created London North Eastern Railway (LNER). David Horne, its managing director, talks about the first few months and wha...

DfT won’t split up Great Western, but calls for ‘more decentralisation’

DfT won’t split up Great Western, but calls for ‘more decentralisation’

28.08.18: There has been little public and organisational support for the idea of splitting the Great Western franchise and creating a separate operation for the West of England, a consultation has revealed – so the government has announced it will...

Public sector bidders will be allowed to compete for ScotRail franchise

Public sector bidders will be allowed to compete for ScotRail franchise

24.08.18: Public-sector bidders will be allowed to compete for the next ScotRail franchise in order to ensure the public and private sectors have a fair and equal access to contracts, ministers have confirmed. Michael Matheson, Cabinet secretary for...

Ex-minister calls for radical managerial devolution of ‘inertia-ridden behemoth’ Network Rail

Ex-minister calls for radical managerial devolution of ‘inertia-ridden behemoth’ Network Rail

22.08.18: A new report by a former transport minister has rejected the idea of renationalising Scotland’s railways and thrown support behind the current system. The report—commissioned by ScotRail operator Abellio and written by Tom Harri...

Southeastern completes £30m upgrade to a third of its trains

Southeastern completes £30m upgrade to a third of its trains

03.08.18: A £30m, three-year upgrade has been completed by Southeastern in a joint venture with Eversholt Rail and Bombardier to a third of its rolling stock. The revamp will benefit more than 600,000 passengers and comes as the Class...

Return to full timetables in September may be stalled due to infrastructure failures

Return to full timetables in September may be stalled due to infrastructure failures

01.08.18: Plans to move back to full timetables from chaos-stricken TOCs such as Northern Rail and TransPennine Express have been thrown into doubt following a recent Transport for North (TfN) meeting. Northern Rail reintroduced three-quarters of its...

Gatwick Express ad claim of trains to Victoria in 30 minutes ruled as ‘misleading’

Gatwick Express ad claim of trains to Victoria in 30 minutes ruled as ‘misleading’

01.08.18: An advert claim by Gatwick Express that its services can reach London Victoria in 30 minutes has been ruled as misleading by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA). A poster and website advert titled “Glide out of Gatwick” wi...

Rail Delivery Group boss: British railways ‘the envy of Europe’

Rail Delivery Group boss: British railways ‘the envy of Europe’

31.07.18: The director of the rail industry’s membership group has claimed that British railways are the “envy” of Europe. Director of the Rail Delivery Group (RDG) Robert Nisbet told BBC 5 Live yesterday that the nation’s rai...

Timetable disruption cost northern economy £38m, bosses call for greater TfN devolution

Timetable disruption cost northern economy £38m, bosses call for greater TfN devolution

30.07.18: Rail industry chaos caused by new timetables on 20 May cost the northern England economy £38m, new analysis has shown. Analysis produced by the Northern Powerhouse Partnership (NPP), a group led by former chancellor George Osborne, fo...

Burnham urges May to ‘solve the railway chaos’ after botched emergency timetables

Burnham urges May to ‘solve the railway chaos’ after botched emergency timetables

30.07.18: The mayor of Greater Manchester has today written to Theresa May calling on her to intervene to solve constant disruption to rail services in the north. Andy Burnham said it was “frankly outrageous” that the introduction of emer...

SWR to renegotiate future timetables with DfT for 'maximum benefit' to customers

SWR to renegotiate future timetables with DfT for 'maximum benefit' to customers

24.07.18: The future of South Western Railway (SWR) services will be renegotiated with the DfT as the company looks to implement changes to future timetables to ensure minimal disruption for customers. According to documents from the ORR, the operato...

DfT pledges ‘tough action’ on GTR, contract breach review due this month

DfT pledges ‘tough action’ on GTR, contract breach review due this month

19.07.18: GTR could be at risk of losing control of its franchise as early as this month depending on the outcome of a “hard review” into whether the TOC breached its contracts. During an urgent question about the May timetable fiasco at...

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£10bn rail network enhancements announced for the next five years

16/10/2019£10bn rail network enhancements announced for the next five years

The Department for Transport (DfT) has today (Oct 16) released its five-year Rail Network Enhancements Pipeline (RNEP) outlining plans that span ... more >
RAIB releases new safety recommendations following recent fatal accident

16/10/2019RAIB releases new safety recommendations following recent fatal accident

The RAIB has delivered a new set of safety recommendations after a passenger suffered fatal injuries after leaning out of a window of a moving tr... more >
Northern Rail could be renationalised, according to transport secretary Grant Shapps

16/10/2019Northern Rail could be renationalised, according to transport secretary Grant Shapps

The government is considering renationalising Northern Rail due to repeated poor performance. Transport secretary Grant Shapps has said he h... 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

Connecting Network Rail with the supply chain

17/09/2019Connecting Network Rail with the supply chain

Continuing our mission to connect buyers with suppliers, This year TransCityRail North is adding a new element to the event. We are introducing an incomparable opportunity for you to meet with over 11 procurement directors from Network Rail at our exclusive 'Network Rail Meet the Buyers Hub'.  Situated at the heart of the event ... more >
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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 >

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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

Andrew Haines, the Chief Executive of Network Rail, has told the Today programme on Radio 4's BBC’s flagship news programme that he wo... more >