Big chance, big change?
20 January 2012
When a rail franchise comes up for renewal it has always been a good opportunity to secure change and passenger benefits. Get something written into the franchise and there is a pretty good chance it will happen. Once a new franchise starts it is very difficult to get anything additional to happen, unless there is a strong business case for it or someone else pays.
The franchise season is on us. A whole string of them are now in the pipeline for replacement. This is when we deploy one of our major products. We commission route based research to find out what are passengers priorities for improvement. We blend this into what we already know about passenger satisfaction on a particular franchise. This helps the Department for Transport and increasingly the bidders target the right things.
However, we don’t have a monopoly on the passenger voice. We have already put in submissions on Greater Western and West Coast – there are more to come – make sure your voice is heard. With longer franchises, 15 years is a long time to wait for a decent train.