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Campaigners respond to interim Shaw report on Network Rail financing

12 November 2015

Campaign for Better Transport responds to the publication of the Shaw Report Scoping study into the future structure and funding of Network Rail.

The government asked Nicola Shaw, Chief Executive of High Speed 1, to look at how Network Rail should be funded and is one of three reviews looking into Network Rail’s future operations which will collectively recommend which rail improvement schemes should go ahead, how they will be prioritised and paid for, and the future of Network Rail itself.

This follows recent delays and cost overruns which have led to a number of improvement work projects being suspended.

James MacColl, Head of Campaigns, Campaign for Better Transport, said:

“We welcome the Shaw review which we hope will ensure that our vital rail infrastructure is put onto secure financial footing, and help avoid more threats to future investment. This interim report shows that proper attention is being given to the potential value of devolving planning and decision making to the regions. However, the fixation with running the network like a business will only lead to a repeat of disastrous mistakes.

"While it is sensible to look at all options, we are concerned that full privatisation of Network Rail has not been ruled out. Railtrack showed that a company driven by short term shareholder interests was not a fit custodian of the rail network. It completely failed passengers, freight users and the country as a whole.

"We need a rail structure and funding that works for everyone, and recognises the wider benefits that increased rail use brings. It is vitally important that the needs of passengers for an affordable, reliable and efficient railway are put first." 


For further information please contact:

Richard Watkins, Press Officer, at Campaign for Better Transport on 020 7566 6494 or richard.watkins@bettertransport.org.uk


  • Read the Shaw Review Interim Report here – Shaw report: scoping study
  • Read Campaign for Better Transport’s media briefing on the state of play with the three reviews into Network Rail’s future operations here – Network Rail, what next?
  • Network Rail is the central government body which owns and manages the country's rail network including 10,000 miles of track and 2,500 stations. Its work is managed through five year Control Periods agreed with government and regulated by the Office of Road and Rail (ORR).
  • Campaign for Better Transport is the UK's leading authority on sustainable transport. We champion transport solutions that improve people's lives and reduce environmental damage. Our campaigns push innovative, practical policies at local and national levels. Campaign for Better Transport Charitable Trust is a registered charity (1101929).



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