Rail industry leaders today set-up a powerful new group to lead the industry forward in delivering a higher performing, more cost effective and sustainable railway network for Britain’s rail users and taxpayers.
The new Rail Delivery Group (RDG) will be made up of the most senior figures in the rail industry – the chief executives of the passenger and freight train operating owning groups and Network Rail – and will be chaired by Tim O’Toole, the chief executive of FirstGroup.
Mr O’Toole said: “This important group will form the nucleus of a new rail industry order that will provide leadership on cross-industry issues to enable delivery improvements for rail users and for the taxpayer. The train operating companies and devolved Network Rail teams will remain accountable for delivery at a local level.”
Sir Roy McNulty highlighted the need for such a group in his final report:
“The study is strongly of the view that the rail industry needs to be given, and needs to accept, greater responsibility for its own future.
“The study therefore recommends the establishment of a Rail Delivery Group (RDG) with responsibility for cross-industry leadership of a substantial programme of change.”
The RDG will normally meet bi-monthly, but for the rest of the year, it will meet monthly and be joined by Sir Roy McNulty, to help the group, and the railway as a whole, take forward his recommendations.
The group will focus on industry-wide issues, including the strategy and long-term vision for the railway.
It will seek to inform key choices facing governments and the development of plans in response to governments’ output specifications. It will consider and implement change in response to key recommendations from McNulty, including the proposal for a rail systems agency.
The group will also steer and take ownership of the vitally important Initial Industry Plans (IIP), due to be published in September as part of the regulatory review process.
The plans will detail the rail industry’s view of the scope for improved efficiency and the key choices relating to the next five year funding period (CP5) from 2014 to 2019.