In the news this week

Network Rail is always in the news

Catering for 4.5m rail journeys every single day, while simultaneously delivering an ambitious, multi-billion pound Railway Upgrade Plan focused on renewing and upgrading 20,000 miles of track, 30,000 bridges and viaducts, thousands of signals, level crossings and stations (the largest of which we also run), means we have a wide-reaching impact and the work we do is extremely newsworthy 

Every week, we'll highlight just a few of those interesting news stories

Friday 29 September, 2017

Ordsall Chord bridge complete - Rail Engineer

The bridge element of Manchester's Ordsall project has been completed. Rail Engineer writes the project will provide new and direct links from the north to Manchester Airport as part of Network Rail's Great North Rail Project.

Cost-saving drones remove need for railway possessions - Construction News

Using drones reduces the need for track closures (possessions) and could change how rail infrastructure surveys are carried out. Construction News ran a feature on drones. 

Find out how we use drones to survey our network


High flyer - Modern Railways

In a two-page profile in Modern Railways, Philip Sherratt speaks to Air Operations head Wendy Welsh. 

Wendy Welsh, author of our National Air Inspection Programme and head of air operations said aerial surveys meant we could identify and work on problem areas before they failed. Her team has been particularly involved in the Thameslink Programme and the redevelopment of London Bridge. Air inspections were conducted ahead of the end of the recent engineering work at London Bridge. It’s an inspiring story and an interesting piece about the Air Operations team – its objectives, its advantages and the culture change engendered by the integration of this relatively new team with a customer focus.  

Paddington boost - Modern Railways

Network Rail property has reported a 40% rise in retail sales at London Paddington station following completion of the Paddington Lawn upgrade. The story is in Modern Railways. After listing some of the new retail units as part of the £13m project, the piece points out the station regeneration is part of preparations for the arrival of the Elizabeth line in 2018.

New approach to future rail upgrades - Passenger Transport

Our chief executive, Mark Carne, envisages moving to a rolling investment programme with projects approved once there is confidence about costs. In this piece, he outlines his investment vision for the sector. Reported in Passenger Transport, he said:

What we will have now is a more rolling programme with each project approved at the point in time where we have done enough work to be confident about what it's going to cost to be delivered and when.

Mark Carne, chief executive, Network Rail 



Example of a planned housing development in Manchester (artist's impression)

New homes - Evening Standard

In a positive piece, the Evening Standard’s homes and property section highlights opportunities to use space above and around London’s 559 railway and tube stations for thousands of new homes.

The cost and design implications of over-station projects can make uncomfortable reading for those worried about conventional approaches to design, density and height.


These are long-term projects and there is a cost but look at King’s Cross, over a decade in the making but well worth waiting for.

David Biggs, managing director, Network Rail property

Queen Street station demolition - Evening Times

Two buildings are set to be demolished as part of major redevelopment work on Glasgow Queen Street station, as reported in Scotland's Evening Times.

The £120 million redevelopment of Glasgow Queen Street will now see redundant buildings in the front of station being removed.




control room screen digital railway

Mind the hack - The Sun

The Sun wrote a piece saying digital train signalling could be a 'risk,' according to a cyber-security expert they spoke with. Having the safest railway in Europe and stringent safety and security protocols in place, we strongly challenged the piece.

Britain has the safest major railway in Europe and cybersecurity is a key part of our plan for introducing digital train control technology.


Safety is our top priority, which is why we work closely with government, the security services, our partners and suppliers in the rail industry and security specialists to combat cyber threats.

Network Rail press office