The UK Rail Report is an impartial account of the year in rail. It updates readers on all the major projects that have begun, are ongoing or were completed during the year 2017-18, the main events and issues impacting the industry, as well as a comprehensive fact file on rail and safety performance over the year.
The UK Rail Report 2019 is released for sale on the eve of Control Period 6. The continuation of the huge investment in UK rail has been confirmed, with £48bn allotted over the next five years by the Department for Transport. This will help to ensure that some of the biggest rail projects for generations, including Crossrail and HS2, will be completed to the satisfaction of stakeholders and the travelling public.
The huge investment in infrastructure continued, with measurable progress on all sorts of projects including Crossrail, HS2, Derby Re-signalling and the nationwide programme of electrification. From a PR point of view, however, the industry came under fire for a number of reasons, notably due to strikes and protests over driver-only operated (DOO) trains, which the unions are strongly opposed to. The introduction of the new timetable in May 2018 also caused major disruption to services for passengers across the country.
In spite of this, passenger numbers continued to rise, while safety for those working on and using the railway also improved slightly. As the year came to a close, Mark Carne stepped down from his position as Chief Executive of Network Rail, succeeded by Andrew Haines. This marks the end of an era, as virtually the whole of Mr Carne’s tenure was during CP5.
As demand for UK rail services continues to grow, we can expect to see a renewal of infrastructure and assets in projects nationwide. The UK Rail Report looks ahead to some of the opportunities and issues awaiting the industry during CP6 and continues to present a vital, impartial picture of the most important events, issues, news and statistics to readers.