Commenting on the proposed changes to the way the Network Rail and each of the country’s rail franchises are run, chief executive of the Association for Consultancy and Engineering (ACE), Dr Nelson Ogunshakin OBE said:
"This is an important change that could ultimately improving customers’ experiences on Britain’s railway network. The government is right to be wary of a return to the days of Railtrack, but changes that lead to a better, safer, more efficient rail service should not be resisted just because they involve more private involvement. The government’s proposal should allow more effective collaboration between the UK’s world class engineers and designers and the ultimate client, the rail operators, to provide better solutions to the management and design work challenges for Network Rail, in turn ensuring the availability of the best possible infrastructure.
"In addition, there is a need for a great deal of clarity, both in terms of how the regionalisation of the network will function in reality, and in how the interoperability between all the different sides will be smoothed. This will take a significant amount of oversight by the Office of Road and Rail, which must ensure it is up to the task."