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Rail franchising has hit the buffers. The question is, what replaces it?

ail franchising is being suspended ďfor a limited period, initially six months,Ē said the Department for Transport. Are you sure? It seems more likely the whole franchising model, as understood since privatisation in the 1990s, is now finished for good.

Tuesday, 24 March 2020


  • Rail emergency measures during the COVID-19 pandemicWe're supporting train operators to make sure our railways stay open for key workers during the coronavirus outbreak.
  • Traffic Commissioners require electronic communication during COVID-19 outbreakTransport regulators give strong guidance on how to maintain services following Government advice. The Traffic Commissioners for Great Britain are currently faced with the difficult task of providing ongoing support and service to the transport industry, during a time of unprecedented disruption. Our roads need to be kept safe for essential deliveries, but the regulators are reviewing their processes and making essential adaptations as the COVID-19 situation develops.
  • CMA review of air traffic control chargesThe CMA has released and is consulting on its provisional findings into a dispute between the CAA and NERL regarding air traffic control charges.

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  • TfL suspends all road user charging schemes to help critical workersTransport for London has announced that all road user charging schemes in the capital will be temporarily suspended. This will come into effect so that none of the charges are in operation from Monday 23 March until further notice. The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan has asked for this move to ensure Londonís critical workers, particularly those in the NHS, are able to travel round London as easily as possible during this national emergency. It also supports the supply chain, the effort to keep supermarkets fully stocked and the cityís continued operation. Government advice is that p...
  • Coronavirus: Rail emergency measures during the COVID-19 pandemicIn these uncertain times, the railway has a vital role to play in ensuring Britainís key workers can travel and vital supplies are kept moving. My absolute focus is on making sure services continue so that journeys that are vital in tackling this crisis can continue to take place, so today (23 March 2020), to make sure our railways stay open, we are providing train operators on franchises let by my department the opportunity to temporarily transition onto Emergency Measures Agreements. These agreements will suspend the normal financial mechanisms of franchise agreements, transferring al...

Rail Technology Magazine

  • Government announces rail emergency measures The Government have announced today (Mar 23rd) that they are taking emergency measures to sustain and withstand necessary rail services as operators face momentous drops in their income. The Department for Transport is temporarily suspending normal franchise agreements and transferring all...
  • Children and parents reminded of the dangers around the railway Following the news on Friday that schools will be closed for the foreseeable future, British Transport Police and Network Rail are urging parents and careers to have a conversation with their children and loved ones about the dangers of trespassing on the railway. Yearly, there is a rise in the...

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  • A message from railway workersAs railway workers, we cannot work at home. But we are pleading with the travelling public, if you can work from home, please do. Because we want to do all we can to make sure that key workers, and essential goods, are transported around the country. And we will do everything we can to help our country fight and beat this pandemic.

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