Asset Protection and Optimisation teams (ASPRO) provide expert railway assistance and support to the public who are planning activities on or near the railway.
Watch our video below to find out what Asset Protection and Optimisation is.
Watch this video to see the size and scope of the work that our Asset Protection & Optimisation team support
Working by the railway?
The rail network is divided into a number of geographical routes and High Speed 1. If you are planning on doing any work near the railway please contact your local ASPRO team who are your gateway to supporting you in delivering your work safely.
Working near the railway can be a dangerous environment and we are in a position to help you navigate the risks. Network Rail is committed to safety so we want to help you deliver your works safely and securely.
To help you achieve your time frames please contact us as early as possible in your planning process, this will enable us to best support you in delivering successfully.
The ASPRO teams can help you with a multitude of works including:
- construction sites near the railway
- utility works (water, electric, gas, cabling etc.)
- radio transmitters
- bridge works
- domestic maintenance (e.g. roof, scaffolding, building repair and maintenance)
- new road schemes
- inspection and surveying
- works within the designated precautionary area of level crossings
- domestic related projects (e.g. house extension) under domestic maintenance (e.g. roof, scaffolding, building repair and maintenance)
Asset protection and optimisation management of third party works on Network Rail Infrastructure
To support the mitigation of potential risks to the railway when third party organisations work on or near the infrastructure, we have made the standard more readily available. You can download the standard ‘asset protection and optimisation management of third party works on Network Rail infrastructure’ from our downloads for third parties page. This standard applies to third party works being undertaken where Network Rail is not the sole client, including the asset protection assurance of works being undertaken by a third party, to assets that will be taken over by Network Rail for operation and/or maintenance.
ASPRO do not deal with emergency works. For emergencies, contact:
- Network Rail emergencies
- HS1 emergencies 01233 739 450
There are other specialist teams within Network Rail that cover the areas listed below:
- town and country planning
- property sales
- power outages
- buried services
- abnormal loads
- vegetation management
- graffiti and vandalism
Managing risk to the network
Working by the railway can be both a risk to your works and our infrastructure. We are keen to work in collaboration with all our customers and lineside neighbours to safeguard you and the railway.
We’ve looked at 41 separate categories of risk that could cause problems, delays or extra cost to a project on the railway and analysed where Network Rail can take ownership of that risk, or made it clear who will cover it. An ‘industry risk fund’ has been established to enable Network Rail to take the risk and fund liabilities when projects encounter certain unforeseen industry related problems. The default risk allocation table is available from our downloads for third parties page and details each potential risk and who is responsible for it – Network Rail, the industry risk fund, the sponsoring customer or the enhancement contractor.
Our ASPRO teams advise on the potential impact of different kinds of work including construction, maintenance and work near level crossings. They can visit you on site and give advice at meetings.
Open for Business
We are making it easier for other organisations to invest in and build on the railway. As we become more open for business, we are reviewing and amending our standards, practices and approach to risk management, streamlining processes to make it easier to work with us. Reforms to our ASPRO organisation so far include: new leadership roles, a national framework, service level commitments, customer satisfaction surveys and risk clarification.
Give us feedback – customer satisfaction surveys
As Network Rail owns and operates Britain's railway, our responsibility to run and maintain it safely can mean other organisations feel we are difficult to work with when delivering railway projects. Recognising this, we are implementing a number of reforms to break down barriers and make it easier to work with us.
To ensure we're making the right changes, we've started conducting customer satisfaction surveys with third parties we work with and have committed to regularly reporting on the results.
If you've worked with Network Rail's asset protection and optimisation teams and would like to give us feedback, please complete our customer satisfaction survey.
The results from our latest customer satisfaction survey can be found on our downloads for third parties page.
External parties we work with
An organisation other than Network Rail intending to undertake works which will physically change and potentially benefit the operation, assets, design or other functionality of Network Rail’s infrastructure.
Third parties may include train, freight and station operators, local Passenger Transport Executives, the Department of Transport (DfT), DBFO, PFI, or commercial developers etc.
Examples of third party works may include:
- Localised schemes (e.g. new siding connected to an existing line, changes to existing depots/stations, and where there is a consequential alteration to Network Rail’s managed infrastructure) funded and undertaken by a train operator.
- Schemes (e.g. new stations/depots) funded and undertaken by a local Passenger Transport Executive (PTE) or county council, or private developer where the assets created will be managed and operated by Network Rail under its health and safety management System.
- Nationally significant schemes (e.g. main line upgrade) funded and specified by the DfT, Transport Scotland or the Welsh Assembly under development or framework agreements with those parties, and/or their nominees.
An individual, member of the public or organisation other than Network Rail which promotes, funds, designs, constructs, owns and maintains the works that are within close proximity to the railway but do not physically change the operation of railway infrastructure and will interface with the railway infrastructure.
However, they may also require incidental changes to Network Rail infrastructure such as
- electrical bonding
- Global System for Mobile Communications-Railway (GSMR) modifications
- changes to lineside fencing
- OLE modifications
- changes to signalling
Outside parties may include local authorities, statutory undertakers, builders and private owners.
Examples of outside party works may include:
- An adjacent landowner working within their own property boundary, which may include works to the property boundary.
- The relevant Highways Authority building a road bridge over the railway in accordance with an Air Rights provision and a Bridge Agreement.
- A utility company installing an undertrack crossing in accordance with a wayleave to carry a main sewer.
How to notify us of third party/outside party works
Please complete the questionnaire below and send to your local ASPRO team. Once we have received your questionnaire, we aim to provide an initial response within five working days.
See below contact details for each of the ASPRO route teams. To see the geographical areas each route covers please download the national contacts map that can be found in the notify us of third party/outside party works above.
New enquiries: AssetProtectionAnglia@networkrail.co.uk
Tel: 020 3356 2510
1 Stratford Place (11th floor)
Manager: Julie Houghton
Tel: 07922 017393 (available 08:30-16:30)
Kent (London South East)
New enquiries: AssetProtectionLondonSouthEast@networkrail.co.uk
Tel: 020 3357 7965
London Cottons Centre
Manager: Logan Subramaniam
East Midlands, North East & Coast
New enquiries: AssetProtectionEastern@networkrail.co.uk
Tel: 01904 384 002
George Stephenson House
Manager: Ben Brooks
Central and West Coast Mainline South
Asset Protection Team
Floor 2, The Quadrant MK
Manager: Michael Lightwing
New enquiries: AssetProtectionLNWNorth@networkrail.co.uk
Tel: 0161 880 3706
Network Rail Asset Protection Team
Floor 1, Square One
4 Travis Street
Manager: Mark Stevens
New enquiries: AssetProtectionScotland@networkrail.co.uk
Tel: 0141 555 4087
151 St Vincent Street
Manager: Raymond Sheridan
Sussex (London South East)
New enquiries: AssetProtectionLondonSouthEast@networkrail.co.uk
Tel: 020 3357 7968
London Cottons Centre,
Manager: Logan Subramaniam
New enquiries: AssetProtectionWales@networkrail.co.uk
Tel: 029 2092 9663
St. Patricks House
Cardiff, CF10 5ZA
Manager: James O’Gorman
New enquiries: AssetProtectionWessex@networkrail.co.uk
Tel: 03308 540 648
Network Rail General Offices
Manager: Peter Barron
New enquiries: AssetProtectionWestern@networkrail.co.uk
Tel: 01793 389830
Asset Protection Team,
5th Floor, Western House,
1 Holbrook Way,
Manager: James O’Gorman
High Speed 2
New enquiries: ASPRO_HS2@networkrail.co.uk
01474 563 667
Network Rail (High Speed) Limited
- Enquiries or plant information requests: Please contact your local head of ASPRO (see ASPRO national contacts map).
- Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC): The EMC Regulations 2006 impose legal obligations on all installers to ensure that the associated risks are taken into account by everyone concerned. Please contact our EMC National specialist team.
- Installing and operating wireless telegraphy equipment: Please contact our Commercial Property team.
- Town and country planning, property sales, lettings and easement negotiations: Please contact our Commercial Property team.
For urgent issues, such as trees being blown on or toward the railway, please call the National Helpline on 03457 11 41 41 and select option 1.
Other useful information
The Highways Interface team work closely with the Asset Protection & Optimisation team to provide specialist advice. They deal with technical and administrative issues related to the New Roads and Street Works Act (NRSWA) 1991 and related legislation.
Their duties cover the Exchange of Works information and the provision and maintenance of information for the National Street Gazetteer. They also represent Network Rail on the Joint Authorities Group (JAG UK) Highways Authorities and Utilities Committees (HAUCs) in England and Wales, and Roads Authorities and Utilities Committees (RAUCs) in Scotland.
All works notices under NRSWA are issued through Street Manager in England, ETON (Electronic Transfer of Notices) in Wales and the SRWR (Scottish Road Works Register) in Scotland.
Working by the High Speed 1 line
The High Speed 1 (HS1) railway is different from the rest of the network in that Network Rail (High Speed) operates and maintains it on behalf of HS1. They follow the Network Rail (High Speed 1) Outside Parties Team Charter. If you’re planning work near HS1, you’ll need to complete an infrastructure search request form. We can help by telling you about:
- historic or as-built structures
- HS1 property boundaries
- any HS1 buried services in the area.
Our outside parties team is committed to giving advice and managing the impact from outside party works. See our Development handbook. If your business borders HS1, see our Working together leaflet and Working together poster.
T: Emmis 01233 739450 (our Outside Parties team does not deal with emergencies)
General HS1 outside party works enquiries
T: 08457 114141
Whilst we accept that graffiti can be unpleasant, the cost of removal can often be high. As a public body we have to adhere to the Government’s Managing Public Money principles and prioritise our expenditure on safety critical matters and those affecting the operation of the railway. For those cases that involve offensive graffiti, we will do all we can to remove this within 24 hours. Visit our community pages to find out the best way to report graffiti and vandalism.
Our vegetation management work is essential for safety, and we do everything we can to keep local residents up to date. We need to manage vegetation next to the railway throughout the year to remove any safety risks while being sensitive to wildlife and the local environment. Visit our environment pages to find out why we need to manage vegetation and how it is done.