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 2 February, 2018 

Survey of British train passengers found overall satisfaction was down - Independent

All the national papers, including Independent, cover Transport Focus’ passenger survey. 27,000 rail passengers were questioned as part of their annual survey and only 38% – just one in three – were pleased with how rail operators handled delays. Overall, people were most satisfied with Grand Central (96%), Hull Trains (95%), Virgin Trains East Coast (92%) and Virgin Trains West Coast (91%)

Train companies and Network Rail need to keep to their basic promises and deliver a relentless focus on day-to-day performance and better information during disruption.

Anthony Smith, chief executive, Transport Focus


Franchising has worked for our railway – Huffington Post

Will Quince, Conservative MP for Colchester has written a blog for the Huffington Post about the benefits of the franchising model

In my mind, there is no question that privatisation has had an enormous benefit to our railway system. Passenger journeys, which fell by a third between 1960 and 1995, have doubled, and we have one of the safest railway networks in Europe.

Will Quince, Conservative MP for Colchester

Neighbours go to war after townhouse residents chop down rail line trees to get better view from their back gardens – Daily Mail

The Daily Mail reports residents in Bristol removed trees at the foot of their gardens backing onto the railway and claimed Network Rail gave them permission to fell the trees. We have denied this to be the case, saying the trees’ removal may have made the land unsafe.

Waterloo balcony and busy concourse

Rail stations to install drinking fountains - Financial Times

Stories about us potentially installing drinking fountains at stations continue to trickle out in the press. The Financial Times published an excitable piece claiming it’s been given the go-ahead after we received a letter of encouragement from Therese Coffey, Suffolk Coastal MP, co-signed by rail minister Paul Maynard. As the decision has not yet been made, we’re trying to bottle this up and are challenging the FT for their misleading story. Our statement has always been:

We are supportive of having water fountains in our managed stations and will be looking to see how we can take this forward.

Network Rail spokesperson

Nottingham railway station fire - woman arrested - BBC

British Transport Police detectives arrested a 33-year-old woman in Derby in connection with the fire at Nottingham railway station on Friday 12 January. The BBC report the woman, who was arrested on suspicion of arson, is currently in custody. Enquiries are ongoing and officers are continuing to appeal for information. Senior investigating officer, Det Insp Granville Sellers, would particularly like to speak to anyone who was at Nottingham railway station between 5am and 6.30am on Friday 12 January, who may have seen something or somebody which caught their attention. Please call BTP on 0800 405040 or text 61016 quoting log 85-12/01/2018. Alternatively call Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.