Regulator announces consultation on future of rail – our response

18 May 2016

Today the Office of Rail and Road has announced a public consultation ahead of the 2018 Periodic Review.

Anthony Smith, chief executive of the independent watchdog Transport Focus, said:
“We welcome news that the regulator is consulting widely on the targets it will set for the railway from 2019. Passengers currently put around £9 billion into the railway – about two thirds of the total cost of running it. Their voice should be heard. Targets should reflect the things that they tell us matter and there should be transparency on how the railway is meeting those targets.

“We know that the top priorities for improvement remain punctuality and capacity. Welcome investment is already going in, but more could be done to improve reliability, especially for commuters. The industry must put greater focus on ensuring right-time performance (rather than allowing a five or ten minute allowance for late trains). We also want to see improvements in passenger information.”


The watchdog speaks to thousands of passengers a year, including the National Rail Passenger Survey where over 50,000 rail passengers a year give us their views about their most recent journey. Alongside this we carry out in-depth research into transport user experiences and needs for the future.

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