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Out now: Issue 107 of Passenger Transport

Out now: Issue 107 of Passenger Transport

Issue 107 of Passenger Transport is published on April 24 Contents include:       LEAD STORY Parties promise action on rail value for money Labour and Conservative manifestos outline new consumer protection policies and pledge fares freezes to make rail travel more affordable   NEWS Liverpool is the latest to...
Parties promise action on rail value for money

Parties promise action on rail value for money

Labour and Conservative manifestos outline new consumer protection policies and pledge fares freezes to make rail travel more affordable     New measures to improve passengers’ perceptions of the value for money of rail travel are set to be introduced by the new government with both the Labour and Conservative...
Lib Dems make bus fare pledge to young people

Lib Dems make bus fare pledge to young people

Party’s manifesto promises to work towards two-thirds discount for those aged 16-21   Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg pictured in June 2013 with teenagers on board a bus in London   The Liberal Democrats would work to introduce a new Young Person’s Discount Card, offering young people aged 16-21 a...
We need experience, not culture change

We need experience, not culture change

Forget culture change, look for underlying causes. Lack of rail experience at the top is a serious handicap for Network Rail   It is no surprise, I suppose, that faced with the problems Mark Carne has at Network Rail and being at a loss at to what to do about...
Arriva expands UK bus apprenticeship scheme

Arriva expands UK bus apprenticeship scheme

Arriva has significantly expanded its UK bus apprenticeship scheme to train tomorrow’s engineers   In 2014 Arriva employed 26 engineering apprentices across its UK bus division The general election campaign has seen all of the major political parties pledge to support, encourage and grow the number of apprenticeships available to...
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Operators’ opinion of Network Rail plummets

Operators’ opinion of Network Rail plummets

Train operators’ opinion of Network Rail has fallen sharply in its latest customer survey, with less than half saying they are satisfied with the company     A huge fall in train operators’ satisfaction with Network Rail has been set out in the company’s latest annual customer survey. The survey, carried out in autumn 2014,...
First plots pilot for Yorkshire bus concept

First plots pilot for Yorkshire bus concept

Pilot corridor planned for New Bus for West Yorkshire proposals, but First says that it require a ‘supportive environment’ before it makes the move     First West Yorkshire has announced plans for a pilot corridor for its New Bus for West Yorkshire concept, subject to a partnership framework being agreed with the region’s Combined...
Nine out of 10 tram passengers are satisfied

Nine out of 10 tram passengers are satisfied

Edinburgh Trams makes strong debut, winning 95% approval   Pictured: Edinburgh Trams   Nine out of 10 tram passengers are satisfied with their journey according to this year’s Tram Passenger Survey, published last month by Transport Focus. Over 4,900 tram passengers in Blackpool, Greater Manchester, the West Midlands, Nottingham, Sheffield and Edinburgh were surveyed. The...
Abellio starts ScotRail with £1m of giveaway

Abellio starts ScotRail with £1m of giveaway

Dutch group Abellio took over operation of Scotland’s railway on April 1, and revealed plans to overhaul its fleet and increase the use of smartcards   Pictured: Jeff Hoogesteger, CEO Abellio (left), and Derek Mackay, Scottish minister of transport, wave off a train as a symbolic start to the Abellio ScotRail franchise   Abellio has...
National Express leads way on Living Wage

National Express leads way on Living Wage

Commitment will benefit 700 staff at group’s bus, coach and rail business in the UK and ‘lays down a marker’ for others in transport sector to follow     National Express has become the first private sector UK transport group to commit to paying all employees the Living Wage. The commitment covers all staff employed...
SWT deal will enable £50m of improvements

SWT deal will enable £50m of improvements

The Department for Transport and South West Trains have agreed a major package of customer service improvements under amended franchise deal   Tim Shoveller, chief executive of the South West Trains-Network Rail Alliance, and rail minister Claire Perry mark the deal   South West Trains and the Department for Transport have agreed a deal for...
First swoops as limping Greyhound shuts down

First swoops as limping Greyhound shuts down

Insurance-related financial  issues see Western Greyhound collapse as FirstGroup makes a grab for the bulk of the operator’s network in Cornwall   First has leased former Western Greyhound vehicles (Picture: Dave Godley)   FirstGroup has swooped on the network of Western Greyhound, just days after the Cornish independent bus operator was forced to cease all...
ScotRail alliance sees Verster join as MD

ScotRail alliance sees Verster join as MD

Abellio and Network Rail have announced plans to enter into an alliance and revealed Phil Verster as the train operator’s new managing director   Pictured: Phil Verster   ScotRail managing director Steve Montgomery is to leave the train operator in May, just a week after Abellio announced he would remain in the post as part...
Mayors to debate transport issues

Mayors to debate transport issues

30 mayors from around the world invited to attend UITP World Congress     UITP secretary general Alain Flausch met with the mayor of Milan, Giuliano Pisapia, last week to announce a joint initiative to invite 30 mayors from some of the world’s largest cities to attend the upcoming UITP World Congress & Exhibition in...
Towards a Northern Powerhouse

Towards a Northern Powerhouse

“There is a growing feeling in Greater Manchester that we are on the cusp of a new ear,” writes Councillor Andrew Fender, chair of Transport Greater Manchester Committee, in our special supplement – ‘A new era for travel in Greater Manchester: Towards a Northern Powerhouse’. In the foreword, Fender continues: “What happens in the next...
First challenges airlines and Virgin East Coast

First challenges airlines and Virgin East Coast

Group says open access London-Edinburgh service would offer travellers ‘significantly lower’ fares than Virgin Trains East Coast, Easyjet and Ryanair   First’s existing open access operator, First Hull Trains   FirstGroup has applied to run 10 new open access services per day from London to Edinburgh on the East Coast Main Line. The proposal is...
What I learnt at the DfT: small is beautiful

What I learnt at the DfT: small is beautiful

Small interventions in transport often make the biggest difference but the talk has once again drifted back to big macho schemes     In July 2011, I visited York, one of 37 local authorities that shared £155m of funding as part of the first allocation from the Local Sustainable Transport Fund   If there is...