Independent reporters

Independent reporters provide us with professional advice on the quality of Network Rail's service provision, as specified in their licence.

Network Rail's network licence includes a condition providing for independent experts (reporters) to be appointed by the network operator (Network Rail), with our approval.

Independent reporters assess Network Rail's asset management (Lot 1); monitor enhancements projects (Lot 2); provide data assurance (Lot 3); and evaluate Network Rail's delivery outputs (Lot 4). Independent reporters may also be called on to provide assessment of Network Rail’s compliance with its wider Network Licence obligations.

Three reporters were appointed from January 2015:

  • Asset management (Lot 1): ARUP and CH2 MHill - analyse and review Network Rail's asset management.
  • Enhancements (Lot 2): ARUP and Nichols - support our monitoring of Network Rail's enhancement projects.
  • Data quality (Lot 3): ARUP - review Network Rail's data to provide us with assurance of the accuracy and reliability of their information.
  • Outputs delivery (Lot 4): ARUP and Nichols - monitor and evaluate Network Rail's delivery of its outputs and commitments for CP5.

Previous arrangements with independent reporters covered data assurance (Part A); review and assessment of Network Rail's business planning and asset management (Part B); and monitoring of enhancements projects (Part C).

Independent reporter reports commissioned as part of the 2018 periodic review (PR18) are available on our draft/final determination web pages.

Asset management

An asset management assessment framework forms the basis of the on-going development and improvement reviews carried out by the ORR to ensure that Network Rail complies with licence condition 1, asset management.


The independent reporters support our monitoring of enhancement projects by reviewing Network Rail’s ability to plan and deliver projects and programmes and to manage the portfolio of enhancements.

Data quality

The independent reporter assesses data quality by providing a grading on two of its aspects: system reliability and data accuracy.

Outputs delivery

The full range of outputs covering train service reliability, as well as some aspects of Network Rail’s regulatory financial statements.