The first phase of industry engagement on new Passenger Service Contracts will begin on 4th November, bringing Government and stakeholders together to ensure a joint focus on a more passenger-focused railway for the future.
New Passenger Service Contracts (PSCs) will be introduced as a key tool in rail reforms, establishing a new way of working between the public and private sector to provide high-quality, punctual and reliable passenger services. They will encourage greater private sector involvement, offering new market entrants and existing operators the chance to showcase innovation and expertise, and work collaboratively with the new public body, Great British Railways (GBR), to deliver the reforms proposed in the Williams-Shapps Plan for Rail (WSPR).
The upcoming engagement exercise will provide potential bidders with the opportunity to learn more about the future commercial model, raise questions and to have their say in the development of the contracts.
The DfT is working not only to maintain successful partnerships with existing passenger service operators, but also to encourage new entrants to the rail market, including those from other transport sectors and those from outside the UK to bring in fresh ideas, investment and innovation from outside the rail network.
Chris Heaton-Harris, Rail Minister, said: “Our Plan for Rail will deliver the most significant reforms to our railways in a generation. Unlocking the expertise, investment and ingenuity of the private sector – including new and ambitious market entrants – is vital to delivering the reforms that put passengers first.
“I encourage all those interested in playing a central role in the future of Britain’s railways to engage with this process, helping build a railway that is fit for the future.”
Under Great British Railways, the railway will be organised in a new way, fixing the fragmentation, confusion and overcomplexity of the past. It will provide simple, sustainable and accountable leadership – one body to maintain and improve the infrastructure, to foster innovation, build trust in the system and attract more passengers back to the network.
Photo credit: Department for Transport