Clock on platform at London Kings Cross station

Public Performance Measure

The number of trains that arrive on time has risen dramatically since we took over the running of Britain's railway in October 2002

This page contains information on the current regulated performance measures for Control Period 5 (CP5). In July 2017 a new suite of metrics to measure train performance was announced for the next control period (CP6); which begins in April 2019. 

The public performance measure (PPM) shows the percentage of trains which arrive at their terminating station within 5 minutes (for London & South East and regional services) or 10 minutes (for long distance services).

It combines figures for punctuality and reliability into a single performance measure. It is the current industry standard measurement of performance.

Performance for 23 July – 19 August (Period 5)

The national PPM is 90.1%.

This compares to 88.8% for the same period last year.

The moving annual average (MAA) is 88.3%.

Performance 2002-2017

Performance by train operator

The table below shows the average PPM for Britain as a whole and by train operating company. The moving annual average is calculated over the 365 days to 19 August.

Performance by train operator

Train Operating CompanyPPM % period 5, 2016/17 PPM % period 5, 2017/18PPM Moving annual average (MAA)
Abellio Greater Anglia91.190.388.8
Arriva Trains Wales90.393.692.3
c2c Rail96.096.394.4
Caledonian Sleeper86.397.689.3
Chiltern92.495.493.2
Crosscountry91.191.889.5
East Midlands Trains91.894.292.4
First Hull Trains88.174.980.3
Transpennine Express90.290.089.1
Govia Thameslink Railway73.183.878.1
Grand Central86.081.985.3
Great Western Railway88.988.687.5
Heathrow Express94.695.389.8
London Midland91.691.888.9
London Overground95.796.394.7
Merseyrail96.294.395.5
Northern92.091.490.7
ScotRail88.992.590.9
Southeastern90.291.587.2
Stagecoach South West Trains91.081.786.5
TfL Rail96.795.895.0
Virgin Trains East Coast85.486.884.2
Virgin Trains West Coast92.090.888.5
Total National Performance88.890.188.3

Notes:

  • The measure of train punctuality also known as PPM (public performance measure) means trains arriving at their terminating station within five minutes for commuter services and within 10 minutes for long distance services.
  • This measure of punctuality is commonly used throughout Europe.
  • National train punctuality is measured for all trains across the whole network, including cancelled services and delays caused by external factors (such as vandalism, extreme weather, suicides etc).
  • Punctuality was not recorded in this thorough way until 1997. Before then Railtrack, and British Rail before that, did not measure all services and also excluded external factors and other items from their numbers.
  • These figures represent provisional data for the period and individual operators' performance data may vary slightly from the full period performance report that we publishes on our website every month.
  • National PPM % is calculated by regarding every train as equal. Operators who run more trains will influence National PPM % more than Operators who run fewer trains.
  • Network Rail and the train operators run more trains across Great Britain than are run in most European countries - almost 20% more than in France and 60% more than in Italy.
  • Britain's 24,000 trains per-day is also more than Spain, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Portugal and Norway combined.

Franchise changes

  • Virgin Trains East Coast took over from East Coast on 1 March 2015.
  • For clarity we began to report Virgin Trains as Virgin Trains West Coast from 1 March 2015.
  • Caledonian Sleeper took over sleeper services from First ScotRail on 31 March 2015.
  • ScotRail took over from First ScotRail on 1 April 2015.
  • TfL Rail took over the London Liverpool Street to Shenfield metro services from Abellio Greater Anglia on 31 May 2015
  • London Overground took over the London Liverpool Street to Enfield Town/Cheshunt/Chingford services as well as the Romford to Upminster service from Abellio Greater Anglia on 31 May 2015
  • Govia Thameslink Railway took over the Southern franchise on 26 July 2015
  • First Great Western was rebranded Great Western Railway on 20 September 2015.

A breakdown of each operator's performance, known as sub-operator PPM, is available to download:

Sub-operator PPM figures for Period 05, 2017/18

Cancellation and significant lateness (CaSL)

A train is counted as being a CaSL failure if:

  • It is cancelled at origin.
  • It is cancelled en route.
  • The originating station is changed.
  • It fails to make a scheduled stop at a station.
  • It is significantly late (ie it arrives at its terminating station 30 minutes or more late).

CaSL is not a regulated measure for Scottish train operators.

The moving annual average is calculated over 365 days to 19 August.

Cancellation and significant lateness (CaSL)

Train Operating CompanyCaSL % period 5, 2016/17CaSL % period 5, 2017/18CaSL Moving annual average (MAA)
Abellio Greater Anglia2.72.52.9
Arriva Trains Wales3.42.02.8
c2c Rail1.62.12.4
Chiltern2.10.81.6
Crosscountry3.62.73.9
East Midlands Trains3.11.72.2
First Hull Trains3.65.47.2
Transpennine Express4.15.04.7
Govia Thameslink Railway9.95.97.4
Grand Central3.67.95.7
Great Western Railway2.83.43.3
Heathrow Express1.50.81.8
London Midland2.22.42.9
London Overground2.11.72.2
Merseyrail1.62.31.8
Northern1.71.82.0
Southeastern2.82.93.8
Stagecoach South West Trains 2.05.43.6
TfL Rail1.31.72.4
Virgin Trains East Coast5.84.76.2
Virgin Trains West Coast1.73.04.4
Total England & Wales Performance3.63.33.7

Average lateness

This measures the average lateness of a passenger as they alight from their train.

For each train, this is calculated by multiplying the number of passengers expected to alight at main stations by the punctuality to the nearest minute at those stops.

If the train is cancelled, we calculate it by multiplying the number of expected passengers by 1.5 times the service frequency on that route.

Average lateness

Average lateness in minutes period 5, 2017/18Average lateness in minutes, moving annual average
National2.42.8
Long Distance3.84.8
London & South East2.32.6
Regional1.92.0
Scotland1.62.0
England & Wales2.42.8

Right-time performance

Right-time performance measures the percentage of trains arriving at their terminating station early or within 59 seconds of schedule. The process for gathering data of this accuracy is currently not 100% reliable and the industry is working on improving the quality of this information to make right-time data more reliable.

An important distinction should be made between ‘right-time’ which refers only to punctuality at terminus and ‘on time’ – a new measure for CP6 which measures punctual arrival at all recorded stations – not just at terminus.

The moving annual average is calculated over 365 days to 19 August.

Right-time performance

Train Operating CompanyRight time % period 5, 2016/17Right time % period 5, 2017/18Right time moving annual average (MAA)
Abellio Greater Anglia68.066.564.3
Arriva Trains Wales79.484.982.4
c2c Rail74.478.473.3
Caledonian Sleeper81.593.580.3
Chiltern76.182.779.8
Crosscountry41.044.241.9
East Midlands Trains70.372.470.5
First Hull Trains36.521.831.7
Transpennine Express54.754.953.1
Govia Thameslink Railway44.957.550.6
Grand Central49.037.643.1
Great Western Railway65.166.665.6
Heathrow Express76.573.964.1
London Midland68.570.365.8
London Overground79.379.876.0
Merseyrail67.963.467.9
Northern73.370.769.8
ScotRail53.860.255.6
Southeastern63.767.262.2
Stagecoach South West Trains65.258.161.3
TfL Rail83.581.283.4
Virgin Trains East Coast54.350.050.5
Virgin Trains West Coast63.052.258.2
Total National Performance64.266.363.6

Delay split

The delay split shows who was responsible for passenger train delays of 3 minutes or more.

  • Network Rail caused delays: as well as infrastructure faults this figure includes external factors such as weather, trespass, vandalism, cable theft and fatalities which account for approximately one third of the delays attributed to us and 20% of all national delays.
  • Train operator caused to self: delays to a passenger train operating company's services that are caused by that company.
  • Caused by other train operators: delays to a passenger train operators services that are caused by another train company.

The delay split was calculated over 365 days to 19 August.

Delay spilt

Network RailTrain operator caused to selfCaused by other train operators
61%29%11%

Delay Split by Operator: Period 5 (23 July 2017 to 19 July 2017)

OperatorInfrastructure*Operations & Other*External (inc. weather, fatalities etc.)*Total*Train operator caused to selfCaused by other passenger train operatorsCaused by freight train operators
Abellio Greater Anglia30%15%16%61%27%4%8%
Arriva Trains Wales16%17%15%48%43%6%3%
c2c Rail22%12%22%55%31%2%12%
Chiltern16%13%6%36%56%5%3%
Crosscountry26%19%13%58%11%22%8%
East Midlands Trains23%21%12%56%25%11%7%
First Hull Trains20%12%21%53%26%18%3%
Transpennine Express15%16%19%51%15%23% 10%
Govia Thameslink Railway17%25%11%54%43%3%1%
Grand Central26%10%19%55%19%24%2%
Great Western Railway25%20%8%53%38%4%5%
Heathrow Express29%31%2%62%10%24%4%
London Midland23% 14% 14%52%32% 12%4%
London Overground18%27%12%57%20% 18%5%
Merseyrail16%34%9%59%38%2%1%
Northern18%16%17%52%34%10%4%
ScotRail24%25%7%56%35%6%3%
Southeastern24%27%22%69%28%2%2%
Stagecoach South West Trains24%45%10%79%18%2%1%
TfL Rail26%16%22%64%27%5%4%
Virgin Trains East Coast28%10%13%51%38%8%3%
Virgin Trains West Coast32%14%25%71%15%11%3%

*Attributed to Network Rail

Delay Split by Operator: MAA (365 days to 19 August 2017)

OperatorInfrastructure*Operations & Other*External (inc. weather, fatalities etc.)*NR Total*Train operator caused to selfCaused by other passenger train operatorsCaused by freight train operators
Abellio Greater Anglia30%15%16%61%27%4%8%
Arriva Trains Wales16% 17% 15%48%43%6%3%
c2c Rail22%12%22%55%31%2%12%
Chiltern16%13%6%36%56%5%3%
Crosscountry26%19%13%58%11%22%8%
East Midlands Trains23%21%12%56%25%11%7%
First Hull Trains20%12%21%53%26%18%3%
Transpennine Express15%16%19%51%15%23%10%
Govia Thameslink Railway17%25%11%54%43%3%1%
Grand Central26%10%19%55%19%24%2%
Great Western Railway25%20%8%53%38%4%5%
Heathrow Express29%31%2%62%10%24%4%
London Midland23%14%14%52%32%12%4%
London Overground18%27%12%57%20%18%5%
Merseyrail16%34%9%59%38%2%1%
Northern18%16%17%52%34%10%4%
ScotRail24%25%7%56%35%6%3%
Southeastern24%22%22%69%28%2%2%
Stagecoach South West Trains24%45%10%79%18%2%1%
TfL Rail26%16%22%64% 27%5%4%
Virgin Trains East Coast28%10%13%51%38%8%3%
Virgin Trains West Coast32%14%25%71%15%11%3%

*Attributed to Network Rail

How punctuality is measured

PPM measures the performance of individual trains advertised as passenger services against their planned timetable as agreed between the operator and Network Rail at 22:00 the night before. PPM is therefore the percentage of trains 'on time' compared to the total number of trains planned.

A train is defined as on time if it arrives at the destination within five minutes (ie 4 minutes 59 seconds or less) of the planned arrival time for London and South East or regional services, or 10 minutes (ie 9 minutes 59 seconds or less) for long distance services.

Where a train fails to run its entire planned route calling at all timetabled stations it will count as a PPM failure.

Note: unless specified otherwise, all data on and linked from this page is for initial indications only and is subject to change in subsequent publications.