Tuesday 6 Dec 2016
Response to UK government announcement re reform of rail
Network Rail has provided a response to the UK government's announcement today.
Mark Carne, chief executive of Network Rail said:
“We strongly welcome these plans to bring more joined up working within the industry. We have already devolved Network Rail into route-based businesses closer to customers, and the proposals announced today will build on the alliances we have created between these route businesses and train operators. We also strongly believe there should be better alignment of incentives between train companies and Network Rail. That is why we now align the performance incentives for all of Network Rail’s 35,000 staff, around targets agreed jointly with train operators. But more needs to be done across the industry.
“Network Rail’s published transformation plan is moving us to being a public sector body that acts like a private business, with a clear focus on what customers want.”
Mark Carne also welcomed the announcement of East West Rail:
“Competition must be at the heart of any organisation that wants to behave like a private sector business. Competition breeds efficiency and innovation and will further encourage our own teams to push aside the barriers holding them back. That is also why I announced last month that Professor Peter Hansford will chair an independent review into the barriers to competition in all elements of delivering rail engineering projects.”
Last month Mark Carne also announced the creation of Boards for each of the devolved route businesses, involving passenger representatives. These boards will oversee the running of the railway in their area.
He said at the time: “Passengers deserve a railway focussed on their needs, to create economic growth, for job creation and housebuilding, and that's what we're working hard at.”
About Network Rail
We own, operate and develop Britain's railway infrastructure; that's 20,000 miles of track, 30,000 bridges, tunnels and viaducts and the thousands of signals, level crossings and stations. We run 20 of the UK's largest stations while all the others, over 2,500, are run by the country's train operating companies.
Every day, there are more than 4.7 million journeys made in the UK and over 600 freight trains run on the network. People depend on Britain's railway for their daily commute, to visit friends and loved ones and to get them home safe every day. Our role is to deliver a safe and reliable railway, so we carefully manage and deliver thousands of projects every year that form part of the multi-billion pound Railway Upgrade Plan, to grow and expand the nation's railway network to respond to the tremendous growth and demand the railway has experienced - a doubling of passenger journeys over the past 20 years.
We are building a better railway for a better Britain.