Network Rail runs, maintains and develops Great Britain’s tracks, signalling, bridges, tunnels, level crossings, viaducts and 20 key stations
Network Rail is a public sector arm’s length body, giving it commercial and operational freedom. Its main customers are the TOCs and FOCs which provide services on Network Rail’s infrastructure.
In 2014 Network Rail devolved day-to-day responsibility for railway businesses to ten strategic geographical areas which was then reduced to eight. Network Rail’s freight activities are conducted at a national level as part of its Freight & National Passenger Operators department.
Network Rail uses the public performance measure (PPM) to measure the performance of individual trains. PPM combines figures for punctuality and reliability into a single performance measure and is considered the industry standard.
Network Rail measures the performance of passenger services against their planned timetable as agreed between the operator and Network Rail at 10pm the night before each day’s schedule.
PPM is the percentage of trains which arrive at their terminating station ‘on time’ compared to the total number of trains planned.
Network Rail also measures its safety performance using a model produced by the Rail Safety and Standards Board (RSSB). It measures safety from the perspective of passengers at stations and all aspects of interaction between the general public and the railway.
Control Period Six
Network Rail runs five year long Control Periods which it uses to determine priorities for investment. Each Control Period begins on 1st April and ends on 31st March to coincide with the financial year. Control Period Six commences in April 2019.
Network Rail published its final update for Control Period Five, detailing its Delivery Plan for the final year of the period. It will publish a similar Delivery Plan for Control Period Six in 2019.
Strategic Freight Network
The Strategic Freight Network (SFN) is a series of schemes carried on the freight network across the country.
Schemes currently underway include gauge clearance, train lengthening and capacity building.
The Anglia route takes in the railway from London Liverpool Street station, which is the capital’s third busiest station with 63.6 million passenger journeys passing through every year, to Norwich, Cambridge, Hertford, Southend, Stansted Airport and the Port of Felixstowe.
London North Eastern and East Midlands (LNE&EM)
The LNE & EM Route contains strategically important national assets which connect communities and economies across the length and breadth of the country.
LNE & EM encompasses three of the country’s most important strategic rail corridors:
• East Coast Main Line (ECML)
• Midland Main Line (MML)
• TransPennine Route.
Geographically it is the biggest Network Rail Route, with 4,600 miles of track spanning the length of the country from Scotland to London via Leeds and Sheffield.
London North Western (LNW)
London North Western (LNW), the largest of Network Rail’s route businesses, is the ‘Backbone of Britain’ – the economic spine connecting our main cities.
LNW runs from London Euston and Marylebone in the south through the Chiltern, West Midlands and North West regions before joining with Scotland at Gretna. It is home to the West Coast Mainline, the busiest mixed-use railway in Europe, serving London, Birmingham, Manchester, Liverpool and Glasgow.
Network Rail Scotland looks after Scotland’s railway infrastructure, including the world-famous Forth Bridge that connects passengers in Fife, north of Edinburgh, with Edinburgh and the Borders.
In May 2015, the Scotland route joined with Abellio ScotRail to form the ScotRail Alliance to improve the network for passengers and businesses.
The South East route is the busiest and most congested in the country, connecting the capital and its southern and south-eastern suburbs with Kent, Surrey, Sussex and Europe.
Around five thousand passenger trains run every day over almost two thousand miles of track.
This route links the major towns and cities of Cardiff, Newport, Swansea, Wrexham and Shrewsbury, as well as providing connectivity in more rural areas.
Journeys to and from Cardiff Central station are forecast to increase from 13 million to 33 million by 2043.
This route is one of the busiest on the rail network, taking in all or part of the counties of Surrey, Berkshire, Hampshire, Dorset, Somerset and Wiltshire.
Passenger numbers on the route have more than doubled in the last twenty years, with over half a million-people using it every day.
There are more than 230 million passenger journeys on Wessex routes each year, including nearly a hundred million to or from London Waterloo.
The Western route runs from Paddington to Penzance, taking in Oxford, Bristol, Bath, Worcester, Exeter and Newbury. New electric power and major investment has transformed the route in recent years.
Paddington and Bristol Temple Meads, which Network Rail owns and manages.