Train service monitoring

I think just about all of us who have used the railway network have encountered a delay at one point or another.

The Government has taken steps to encourage railway operators to boost their punctuality by encouraging delay-repay schemes, introducing an Railway Ombudsman and ensuring that all train operators log and publish regular reports on delays and cancellations.

Today I received a letter from the Secretary of State for Transport going even further - a new performance measure that shows whether trains are on time, to the minute!

Railway monitoring is set to improve


Having these facts and figures will not only help the Government hold the train operators to account, particularly when considering awarding new franchises, but will also better enable the railway operators to identify where and why problems are occurring.

We all know a delay by a few minutes can mean a passenger may be unable to meet a transfer to their final destination.  It is good to know the heads of the rail industry are working together to deliver improvements not only in the short but also in the long-term to bring about a more punctual service for all. 

The ongoing Williams Railway Review is also drawing to a close with recommendations to be implemented from 2020.  It follows six principles which shape the conversation on rail transport - that the customers are at the heart, that there is clear accountability when things go wrong, that journeys deliver value for money, that rail drives economic growth, that our towns and cities benefit from a growing rail network which improves communities and that careers in rail are long, fulfilling and highly skilled.

I look forward to the outcomes of the review and will keep pressing the Department for Transport to do what it can to improve punctuality across the railway network.