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 20 August - 16 September (Period 6)

The national PPM is 89.3%.

This compares to 87.4% for the same period last year.

The moving annual average (MAA) is 88.4%.

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 16 September.

Performance by train operator

Train Operating CompanyPPM % period 6, 2016/17 PPM % period 6, 2017/18PPM Moving annual average (MAA)
Abellio Greater Anglia87.891.389.0
Arriva Trains Wales92.692.392.3
c2c Rail95.296.194.5
Caledonian Sleeper87.588.689.4
Chiltern91.091.293.2
Crosscountry90.091.389.6
East Midlands Trains92.194.992.6
First Hull Trains73.274.080.4
Transpennine Express91.289.989.0
Govia Thameslink Railway74.281.978.7
Grand Central78.786.4 85.9
Great Western Railway84.486.587.7
Heathrow Express88.594.190.2
London Midland89.191.089.1
London Overground95.295.894.8
Merseyrail95.695.095.4
Northern92.691.390.6
ScotRail90.794.191.2
Southeastern82.590.887.8
South Western Railway89.179.685.8
TfL Rail94.594.094.9
Virgin Trains East Coast77.385.984.8
Virgin Trains West Coast85.587.988.6
Total National Performance87.489.388.4

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.
  • South Western Railway took over from Stagecoach South Western Trains on 20 August 2017.

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

Sub-operator PPM figures for Period 06, 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 16 September.

Cancellation and significant lateness (CaSL)

Train Operating CompanyCaSL % period 6, 2016/17CaSL % period 6, 2017/18CaSL Moving annual average (MAA)
Abellio Greater Anglia3.42.92.9
Arriva Trains Wales2.32.62.8
c2c Rail1.41.72.4
Chiltern2.62.61.6
Crosscountry3.53.03.8
East Midlands Trains2.20.92.1
First Hull Trains11.24.16.6
Transpennine Express3.55.04.8
Govia Thameslink Railway9.06.97.3
Grand Central9.74.15.3
Great Western Railway4.63.63.2
Heathrow Express2.90.81.6
London Midland2.82.62.9
London Overground2.02.32.3
Merseyrail2.02.11.8
Northern1.71.92.0
Southeastern5.82.63.6
South Western Railway 2.86.23.8
TfL Rail2.23.12.5
Virgin Trains East Coast12.44.45.5
Virgin Trains West Coast6.54.74.2
Total England & Wales Performance4.23.73.6

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 6, 2017/18Average lateness in minutes, moving annual average
National2.52.7
Long Distance4.14.6
London & South East2.52.6
Regional1.92.0
Scotland1.41.9
England & Wales2.62.8

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 16 September.

Right-time performance

Train Operating CompanyRight time % period 6, 2016/17Right time % period 6, 2017/18Right time moving annual average (MAA)
Abellio Greater Anglia62.470.564.9
Arriva Trains Wales81.982.682.4
c2c Rail73.074.273.3
Caledonian Sleeper81.084. 480.5
Chiltern75.177.279.9
Crosscountry41.343.742.1
East Midlands Trains68.276.171.1
First Hull Trains28.820.031.1
Transpennine Express54.255.853.2
Govia Thameslink Railway45.354.751.3
Grand Central41.645.043.4
Great Western Railway61.563.465.7
Heathrow Express66.171.664.5
London Midland65.368.866.1
London Overground76.581.176.3
Merseyrail68.466.467.7
Northern74.170.969.5
ScotRail54.461.856.2
Southeastern56.765.862.9
South Western Railway63.255.960.7
TfL Rail79.982.383.6
Virgin Trains East Coast46.350.250.8
Virgin Trains West Coast58.048.257.5
Total National Performance62.365.663.8

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 16 September.

Delay spilt

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

Delay Split by Operator: Period 6 (20 August 2017 to 16 September 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 Anglia20%18%20%58%33%4%5%
Arriva Trains Wales13%21%17%51%40%6%3%
c2c Rail16%15%12%42%50%3%4%
Chiltern24%12%7%42%48%5%4%
Crosscountry26%18%15%59%11%22%8%
East Midlands Trains27%16%17%60%18%15%7%
First Hull Trains31%8%18%57%22%18%3%
Transpennine Express20%16%20%55%17%23% 4%
Govia Thameslink Railway19%25%10%54%41%3%2%
Grand Central39%9%11%59%14%24%3%
Great Western Railway22%20%10%53%37%4%6%
Heathrow Express28%22%6%55%7%33%5%
London Midland21% 15% 15%52%30% 10%8%
London Overground37%20%10%67%17% 12%4%
Merseyrail27%27%9%62%36%2%0%
Northern17%17%16%50%37%9%4%
ScotRail16%17%11%45%45%8%2%
Southeastern29%23%16%68%28%2%1%
South Western Railway42%26%10%78%19%2%1%
TfL Rail20%35%13%68%19%10%3%
Virgin Trains East Coast32%9%18%60%26%10%4%
Virgin Trains West Coast24%15%23%62%20%11%7%

*Attributed to Network Rail

Delay Split by Operator: MAA (365 days to 16 September 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%13%18%62%28%4%6%
Arriva Trains Wales17% 20% 17%54%37%6%3%
c2c Rail19%14%31%64%34%1%2%
Chiltern15%18%12%45%44%6%5%
Crosscountry26%17%19%62%11%20%7%
East Midlands Trains26%18%18%62%20%12%6%
First Hull Trains31%12%20%63%15%20%2%
Transpennine Express23%16%17%56%17%22%5%
Govia Thameslink Railway15%33%12%60%37%2%1%
Grand Central31%13%19%62%14%21%3%
Great Western Railway26%20%15%62%27%5%6%
Heathrow Express32%27%9%68%10%17%5%
London Midland22%14%17%54%30%11%5%
London Overground23%27%13%63%17%16%5%
Merseyrail15%32%13%59%38%2%0%
Northern21%15%16%52%35%9%3%
ScotRail21%19%13%54%38%6%2%
Southeastern26%25%19%70%25%2%4%
Stagecoach South West Trains31%25%17%73%23%2%2%
TfL Rail23%23%15%61% 25%9%5%
Virgin Trains East Coast30%13%21%64%24%10%3%
Virgin Trains West Coast29%14%25%69%16%11%5%

*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.