21st June 2013

  • Channel Tunnel crossings ‘too expensive’, says European Commission
  • One-third of train delays owing to passengers and staff
  • DfT to challenge Network Rail on West Coast services
In this issue:

Main stories this week

Passengers travelling through the Channel Tunnel are being overcharged, according to the European Commission. [BBC News]

  • It demanded that Britain and France should move to cut the levies, says [The Times]

Driver sickness, broken-down trains and passengers being taken ill during journeys were responsible for thousands of delays last year, official figures have shown. [Daily Telegraph]

  • Customer satisfaction hits the buffers as railway users complain about delayed journeys and poor-value tickets. [The Guardian]

Network Rail is set to be challenged by the Department for Transport over its decision to block new direct services on the West Coast Main Line in a row that could also determine the future of “open access” competitor train companies. [The Times]

New stories

The UK’s first tram train project remains live with transport minister Norman Baker in South Yorkshire this week and purportedly signing contracts to deliver the scheme by 2016. [Transport Briefing]

The Mayor of London has lost his battle to take control of commuter rail services in Kent after political opposition to the move. [Evening Standard]

The introduction of direct train services between the UK and Germany has edged a step closer after the Intergovernmental Commission granted Deutsche Bahn an operating certificate allowing it to run passenger services through the Channel Tunnel. [Transport Briefing]

Other news

The RMT union says it will take any action necessary – including strike action – to prevent the closure of a London Underground ticket office. [BBC News]

Smarcards called ‘the Bramble’, similar to the Oyster system used on London’s public transport, are to be introduced to the Glasgow Subway. [The Scotsman]

[The Economist] is full of praise for the effects of rail privatisation on freight.


Go-Ahead said on Thursday that its bus operations would drive the profitability of the group as earnings from its rail business are set to drop sharply in the coming year, partly because of the hiatus in the government’s franchising programme after last year’s West Coast fiasco. [Financial Times