Rail franchises operators & contracts

Up north: a long-term strategy

Up north: a long-term strategy

17.07.18: Until April, David Hoggarth was director of Rail North. Now, after the amalgamation of Rail North with subnational body Transport for the North (TfN), he is the latter’s strategic rail director. Here, he talks about the importance of a lon...

GTR launches third timetable in two months, hopes to provide ‘more robust service’

GTR launches third timetable in two months, hopes to provide ‘more robust service’

16.07.18: Struggling operator Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) will introduce its third timetable in just two months following a chaotic service shake-up in May. Rail services around the country were heavily disrupted from 20 May when operators introdu...

Timetable chaos: Rail industry ‘lacks courage’ to say no to impossible demands

Timetable chaos: Rail industry ‘lacks courage’ to say no to impossible demands

13.07.18: The rail industry needs to pluck up the courage to say no to others instead of trying to accommodate every single stakeholder demand – and then failing to deliver on these expectations, rail veteran Chris Gibb has said. Gibb, who chai...

Northern passengers to receive special compensation after May timetable chaos

Northern passengers to receive special compensation after May timetable chaos

12.07.18: Northern Rail passengers will have access to a special compensation scheme as a result of the May timetable changes, although details about who will be entitled to refunds are yet to be confirmed. The scheme, announced by the rail minister...

The rail franchise model ‘is bust’ says former Network Rail chief

The rail franchise model ‘is bust’ says former Network Rail chief

12.07.18: Article by Callum Wood of Rail Technology Magazine. Former Network Rail chief, John Armitt, has said to the BBC that rail operators have taken a "very significant revenue risk" which has "got them into trouble." This is because the gov...

GTR manager takes up two seats on packed train, tells passengers they can’t share empty carriage

GTR manager takes up two seats on packed train, tells passengers they can’t share empty carriage

11.07.18: A high-ranking manager at Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) has been criticised after taking up two first class seats on a full train and preventing economy passengers using the carriage. Passenger Emma Fitzpatrick photographed Mark Boon, head...

'Disappointed' rail industry reacts to scrapped December timetable changes

'Disappointed' rail industry reacts to scrapped December timetable changes

10.07.18: The rail industry has reacted to news yesterday that some major TOCs will not be introducing new timetables in December, in an effort to prevent another rail schedule fiasco like the chaotic implementation of new timetables in May. Released...

Network Rail accepts role in ‘unacceptable SWR disruption’ linked to poor recovery plans

Network Rail accepts role in ‘unacceptable SWR disruption’ linked to poor recovery plans

05.07.18: Outdated contingency plans, poor incident responses, and incomplete ‘lessons learned’ review were amongst the key culprits behind Network Rail’s major role in contributing to delays across South Western Railway (SWR). ...

ATW pays out £2.4m in penalties for delayed and cancelled services

ATW pays out £2.4m in penalties for delayed and cancelled services

05.07.18: Arriva Trains Wales has paid out over £2.4m in financial penalties for delayed or cancelled services, a North Wales Assembly Member (AM) has announced.  Speaking to the Welsh Assembly on Tuesday, Aberconwy AM Janet Finch-Saunders...

Timetable chaos: Strong and stable?

Timetable chaos: Strong and stable?

03.07.18: David Sidebottom, director at Transport Focus, paints a stark picture of the considerable human impact of delays across London and the north – even before the full extent of the crisis becomes known. The current timetable chaos on Tha...

Welsh rail: Left in the dark

Welsh rail: Left in the dark

03.07.18: Chair of the Welsh Affairs Committee, David Davies, argues that, in light of cancelled electrification plans, Welsh rail has been left in the dark and has seen little investment compared to the rest of the UK. The cancellation of plans to e...

TOCs take out newspaper ad apologising to customers, pledge new timetable in two weeks

TOCs take out newspaper ad apologising to customers, pledge new timetable in two weeks

03.07.18: Major train firms have taken out a half-page advert in a major newspaper to apologise to customers for “ongoing problems” since the chaotic introduction of new timetables on 20 May. South-eastern TOCs GTR and Great Northern, in...

Urgent clarity needed amid claims that TransPennine electrification will be scrapped

Urgent clarity needed amid claims that TransPennine electrification will be scrapped

02.07.18: The government has come under fire after claims it will reverse its decision to electrify the TransPennine rail route connecting Manchester to Leeds and York. Last summer, transport secretary Chris Grayling suggested that the government cou...

Stagecoach hit by £85.6m loss after being stripped of East Coast franchise

Stagecoach hit by £85.6m loss after being stripped of East Coast franchise

28.06.18: Stagecoach has revealed a loss of £85.6m after being stripped of the East Coast franchise, which was recently brought under government control. The DfT is now running the franchise as London North Eastern Railway (LNER). The reve...

TfGM lays bare Northern slump since 2016 franchise refresh, including many broken promises

TfGM lays bare Northern slump since 2016 franchise refresh, including many broken promises

27.06.18: A report set to be presented at a Greater Manchester Combined Authority board meeting this Friday has laid bare the staggering decline in performance across Northern since the franchise changed hands in 2016, including the many promises that wer...

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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 >