Transport User Voice – January 2017 – What’s happening in Scotland?

21 December 2016

ScotRail performance

Since ScotRail published its Performance Improvement Plan, we have met with them to discuss the how they plan to improve services for passengers.

The measures contained in the plan are not just here for the short term. They are sensible, practical ideas that are being implemented both in the short term and will be retained for the long term. This will hopefully enable performance to improve as well as ensuring that the current electrification projects are delivered. We will be ensuring that this delivers what passengers want at present and the railway they want for the future.

We were pleased to see the Minister for Transport announce a free week’s travel for monthly and annual season ticket holders to thank passengers for their patience during recent disruption of rail services.

Scottish Government

We recently attended a meeting called by the Transport Minister with other stakeholders, including; Regional Transport Partnerships and Trade Unions to discuss public sector bids for future rail franchises. With new powers devolved to the Scottish Parliament on railways, this makes the possibility of a public sector bid an issue that can be considered in future.

At the meeting we emphasised our research in Scotland, regarding rail passengers priorities for improvement, as passengers would want their priorities delivered, regardless of what sector any future bid came from.

British Transport Police

Following the consultation on the future of the British Transport Police (BTP) in Scotland, the Scottish Government has concluded that the integration of railway policing into Police Scotland will now take place and has moved a step closer following the publication of the Bill in the Scottish Parliament.

The Bill gives railway policing powers to the Scottish Police Authority (SPA) and Police Scotland, in preparation for the integration of BTP in Scotland.

The Bill also creates an obligation for the SPA and Chief Constable to engage regularly with railway operators on railway policing, and obtain the views of rail passengers. During this process we will engage with Parliament to ensure the dedicated and specialist nature of railway policing is retained within Police Scotland.

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