Department for Transport

The Department for Transport's role is to provide strategic direction and funding to the railways in England and Wales, as well as to procure rail franchises and projects. The Department’s work is directed and overseen by the Secretary of State for Transport and his Ministerial team.

The DfT Rail group's objectives are:

  • to ensure delivery of improved operational and financial performance, and safety, by the railway;
  • to secure appropriate rail passenger services at an acceptable price through effective specification and procurement;
  • to develop and deliver a robust, affordable and sustainable strategy for the development of the railway that supports wider transport objectives; and
  • to ensure the cost-effective and timely delivery of major rail projects.

The Scottish government is responsible for the same in Scotland.

As the independent regulator, ORR works closely with both the Scottish government and the DfT to help ensure a safe, efficient and value for money rail network in England, Wales and Scotland.