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Out now: Issue 254 of Passenger Transport

Out now: Issue 254 of Passenger Transport

Issue 254 of Passenger Transport is published on November 26. Contents include:     LEAD STORY Ministers strip TfN of responsibility for NPR In a move branded ‘inconsistent with the government’s devolution agenda’, Transport for the North will no longer be paid to develop East-West links   NEWS Anger as...
Ministers strip TfN of responsibility for NPR

Ministers strip TfN of responsibility for NPR

In a move branded ‘inconsistent with the government’s devolution agenda’, Transport for the North will no longer be paid to develop East-West links     Ministers have removed funding and powers from Transport for the North after it dismissed the government’s Integrated Rail Plan for the North and the Midlands...
Franchises ‘will ensure bus staff are well paid’

Franchises ‘will ensure bus staff are well paid’

Following a series of strikes, the Welsh Government says bus franchising will safeguard workers’ pay and conditions. Rhodri Clark reports   Ebbw Vale’s deserted bus station during this month’s strike by some Stagecoach employees   The Welsh Government says that future bus franchises will safeguard workers’ conditions and ensure staff...
Reid’s career offers us lessons for today

Reid’s career offers us lessons for today

  With our industry transitioning back to a more centralised set-up, George Muir’s book on Sir Robert Reid is essential reading   Sir Robert Reid   ‘There’s just not the characters left in the game anymore’ is a phrase oft-used to describe a less interesting sporting landscape and it’s a...
How Boris scored a £96bn own goal

How Boris scored a £96bn own goal

  Unveiled last week, ‘the biggest ever public investment in Britain’s rail network’ was almost universally slated. So what went wrong?   Boris Johnson toured the North of England to coincide with the announcement of the Integrated Rail Plan   The most striking element of last week’s Integrated Rail Plan...
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Party conferences and a crunch-point

Party conferences and a crunch-point

  The big issues were debated at this year’s lively party conferences, but there are huge questions to be answered on transport policy   A vision of Greater Manchester’s fully integrated network, championed by mayor Andy Burnham   It felt like the fallow Covid period has reinvigorated party conferences as institutions that previously felt like...
The final nail in the franchising coffin?

The final nail in the franchising coffin?

  Govia being stripped of Southeastern should bring the curtain down on franchising and hasten the introduction of concessions   A Southeastern 465 Unit at Gravesend   Shall we just knock it on the head now? I mean, franchising. With the demise of Southeastern, it’s tempting just to expedite the move towards National Rail Concessions...
NEG/Stagecoach merger talks: The end of an era

NEG/Stagecoach merger talks: The end of an era

Stagecoach and National Express are in merger talks. The new combined group would operate one third of Britain’s buses outside of London     Stagecoach is synonymous with Britain’s privatised public transport sector. But with that industry now evolving into one where the public sector will play a much greater role, the group looks set...
We need radical actions, not hot air

We need radical actions, not hot air

  Lurid warnings and distant targets won’t avert climate change. Transport is a key battleground and we desperately need a plan   Boris Johnson last week told the assembly of world leaders at the United Nations in New York that COP26 had to be a “turning point for humanity”   I don’t know about you,...
Branding must not suffer during hiatus

Branding must not suffer during hiatus

  GB Railways may be two or three years away but it’s coming so many TOCs have given up on their brand. This should worry us all   The BR logo would appear to resonate with Joe and Joanna Public   I’ve been living the dream this last month and have travelled on every TOC...
Scheduler of the Year Award judges named

Scheduler of the Year Award judges named

Four-strong judging panel, including previous winner, will decide winner of the 2021 Joe Wood Scheduler of the Year, sponsored by CitySwift   Richard Sherratt: Joe Wood Scheduler of the Year 2020   The winner of last year’s inaugural Joe Wood Scheduler of the Year Award is among the judges for the 2021 prize. Trentbarton’s Richard...
We must get better to lure motorists

We must get better to lure motorists

  The sad truth is that too many bus services are at best tolerable. We need to make them desirable if we are to achieve modal shift   A welcoming sight?   Travelling on a number of local bus services in the south of England with some industry friends recently, I was, quite frankly, very...
‘Operators should not rush back to normal’

‘Operators should not rush back to normal’

New research by Transport Focus concludes that operators need to keep up additional Covid-19 measures and communications to reassure passengers   Wearing a face mask is the key safety measure for more nervous passengers   Although restrictions have eased and passenger volumes continue to recover, public transport operators have been warned not to “rush back...
Barbara Castle showed how to get things done

Barbara Castle showed how to get things done

  Harold Wilson said he wanted a ‘tiger in the tank’ of his transport policy when he appointed Barbara Castle – and that’s what he got   Barbara Castle showed us that you need to go out there and relentlessly sell radical change   On September 8th more than 350 people took part in the first...
Don’t get complacent about punctuality

Don’t get complacent about punctuality

  Punctuality and reliability soared when lockdown took rail users away. We must not now regard the return of delays as inevitable   Unless we’re all over the detail, a trend of worsening punctuality could become a crisis in a few months’ time   “The problem with you is that you are always looking for...
Rethinking the railway for a post-Covid world

Rethinking the railway for a post-Covid world

  We have an opportunity to fundamentally reconsider how we use space on trains as well as the role of the national rail network   Before the pandemic, Dutch railway NS worked on train designs that enhance the experience for customers   The last 18 months have been a time of unparalleled change and disruption...
‘Governments need to get real’ - Stagecoach

‘Governments need to get real’ – Stagecoach

Launching group’s new sustainability strategy, boss Martin Griffiths called for ‘radical behaviour change and incentives to reward the right choices’   Martin Griffiths: We need to be more honest about the scale of the challenge   Stagecoach has issued a blunt warning to governments to turn warm words on greener travel into practical actions that...