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Rail reform: No-one in Government putting needs of passengers and taxpayers first, PAC reports

27 May 2024

The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) has published its report scrutinising the Government’s programme of rail reform.

The report finds that Government has made little progress in implementing its ambitious plans for rail, with much of the proposed reforms and associated benefits now largely on hold until the next Parliament. In particular, the Department has not yet established Great British Railways (GBR), the new organisation intended to act as the ‘guiding mind’ for the whole rail system and which it originally planned to have set up by March 2024. 

The PAC’s report finds that no one in Government is putting the needs of passengers and taxpayers first, with poor performance persisting across the rail network – in 2022-23, 13.7% of trains were delayed and 3.8% were cancelled. In the meantime, taxpayers continue to subsidise passenger rail services at a level that Government considers unsustainable (£3.1 billion in 2022-23).

Further information

Image: PA