Office of Rail and Road Update - October 2018
Welcome to ORR's October Newsletter.
Welcome to ORR’s October newsletter – the first since my appointment as interim Chief Executive. I’m really looking forward to taking on the role and following up the excellent work done by our previous Chief Executive, Joanna Whittington. The recruitment process for a permanent replacement has begun and I expect to be in this role for around 6 months. I have worked at the ORR for over ten years, most recently as Director of Railway Markets and Economics, and I’ll be building on this understanding and meeting with many of you across the industries we regulate and monitor.
We already have a well-defined agenda for the next few months, with several significant pieces of work underway. Our independent inquiry into the disruption following May’s timetable changes continues and we will publish recommendations in December. The Final Determination of our periodic review of Network Rail will be published on 31 October, following our consultation on the Draft Determination. And we continue to work with the Department and Highways England work on the Second Road Investment Strategy.
But our business as usual work is also crucial and these are the functions the rail and road industries rely on us to continue to do well.
A particular challenge for the ORR and the rail industry as a whole that I would like to highlight is the transition from Control Period 5 to CP6. Once we have published the Final Determination we will look in more detail at Network Rail’s preparedness for CP6. I will be setting out how we are going to do this in more detail in the next month, including at my forthcoming speech at Accelerate Rail on 14 November.
Interim Chief Executive
ORR's Inquiry into May Timetable Disruption
Following last month’s publication of our interim findings work has continued on our final recommendations which will be published in December. As part of this process, we’ve held helpful discussions with stakeholders and passenger representatives at sessions in Manchester and London. Thanks to all those who attended, or provided information throughout the process.
On 22nd October ORR‘s Stephen Glaister, Chair, Dan Brown, Director of Strategy and Policy, and Ian Prosser, Director Railway Safety, will appear before the Transport Select Committee to discuss their findings.
Out with the inquiry ORR has launched an investigation into whether GTR and Northern breached licence requirements around information provision.
Final Determination of PR18 and Start of CP6
On 31 October, ORR will publish our final determination on Network Rail’s Strategic Business Plans for the period 2019-2024. Throughout the PR18 process we have been committed to working with Network Rail to ensure the transition to CP6 is smooth, with clear spend profiles for the supply chain, and ensuring readiness from day one of CP6 will be a continued focus in the coming months.
Williams Review of Rail
The Department for Transport has published terms of reference for its Rail Review. ORR will be contributing to the review, both in terms of specific technical inputs, and providing resource.
ORR brings prosecution after injuries to child
Earlier this month, DB Cargo were found guilty of one offence under the Health and Safety Act, following an ORR investigation and prosecution following an incident in 2014 when a 13 year old boy received life-changing injuries after accessing a disused signal box.
Blogs - give us your views
Over the last few months we have published blogs on accessibility, stations and asset disposal. We are keen to show the full range of the work we do, and to give you more information on the areas you are interested in. Our blogs can be found here and if there’s an aspect of our work you would like to see covered in them, or if you have any other queries please contact Jennifer.Webber@orr.gov.uk