Rail franchises operators & contracts

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...

Scathing letter rips into May timetable chaos, demands Grayling take responsibility

Scathing letter rips into May timetable chaos, demands Grayling take responsibility

18.07.18: Members of the London Assembly have written to Chris Grayling calling on him to take responsibility for the failings of the industry in implementing new timetables – which have wreaked havoc across the network since their roll-out in May &...

DfT said East Coast bid was ‘low-risk’ despite very ambitious growth targets

DfT said East Coast bid was ‘low-risk’ despite very ambitious growth targets

17.07.18: Stagecoach and Virgin’s original bid for the failed Intercity East Coast franchise was “ambitious” and not fully believed by the DfT to succeed, MPs have been told. Speaking to the Commons Transport Select Committee yester...

More delays hit GTR after third timetable in two months, leaving passengers furious

More delays hit GTR after third timetable in two months, leaving passengers furious

17.07.18: Services on the renewed timetable for struggling rail firm GTR have already been hit by a spate of cancellations despite the operator introducing its third timetable in two months. Networks under GTR’s control— Southern, Thamesl...

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Rail industry launches new interactive accessibly map for UK rail stations

17/04/2019Rail industry launches new interactive accessibly map for UK rail stations

A new interactive map which lets passengers find out about accessibility at stations has been launched by the Rail Delivery Group (RDG) to help b... more >
Helium balloons causing ‘increasing number of train delays’ at cost of £1m

17/04/2019Helium balloons causing ‘increasing number of train delays’ at cost of £1m

Helium-filled balloons are causing hundreds of train delays at a cost of £1m in taxpayer money every year, Network Rail has revealed. ... more >
Dawlish sea wall gets council planning approval with construction to begin in May

17/04/2019Dawlish sea wall gets council planning approval with construction to begin in May

Plans for an £80m sea wall to protect the Dawlish coastal rail line from extreme weather have been by approved by Teignbridge District Coun... 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

West Midlands Rail Executive’s Malcolm Holmes on the 30 year Rail Investment Strategy and working with Midlands Connect

08/04/2019West Midlands Rail Executive’s Malcolm Holmes on the 30 year Rail Investment Strategy and working with Midlands Connect

Malcolm Holmes, Chief Executive of the West Midlands Rail Executive, joins us to discuss the 30-year Rail Investment Strategy, and how he and his team are working closely with Midlands Connect to deliver on uplifting capacity and bettering services for people across the region ahead of TCR Midlands 2019. What do your roles as Ex... more >
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Changing the London skyline with HS2

26/03/2019Changing the London skyline with HS2

Lisa Hogben, HS2 programme delivery manager for area south enabling works, explains how the arrival of HS2’s first tower cranes shows chang... more >
Picking up the pace with high-speed track handovers

26/03/2019Picking up the pace with high-speed track handovers

In 2018 Steve Featherstone, programme director of track at Network Rail, set his team a challenge to secure 100 high-speed track handovers in a y... more >
26-30 Railcard: taking advantage of opportunities

19/03/201926-30 Railcard: taking advantage of opportunities

After a nine-month national trial, the rail industry launched its seventh National Railcard for 26-30-year-olds on 2 January 2019. Rail Delivery ... more >
Caledonian Sleeper: a railway icon re-imagined

19/03/2019Caledonian Sleeper: a railway icon re-imagined

The world-renowned Caledonian Sleeper, due to begin operations at the end of spring 2019, completed its first Scotland to London journey earlier ... more >

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interviews

Women in rail - is the industry on the right track?

12/03/2019Women in rail - is the industry on the right track?

RTM sits down with Samantha Smith, sole female member of the TransPennine Route Upgrade Alliance Leadership Team, to find out more about encourag... more >