Southern Rail review 'scathing' about Government

Posted On: 
28th January 2017

A government-commissioned report into the chaos on Southern Rail trains will heavily criticise ministers for their handling of the network, according to The Times.

Southern Rail has been dogged by cancellations and delays for several months
PA Images

The report from Network Rail veteran Chris Gibb is expected to blame the Department for Transport (DfT) for the initial terms of Southern’s contract, a lack of funding for track upgrades and poor oversight, the paper says.

A source said: “GTR [franchise holder Govia Thameslink Railway] and Network Rail don’t come well out of this but [the report] is scathing of the DfT. It is dynamite.”

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The DfT asked Mr Gibb to write the report in September, and it is believed it was delivered around a month ago.    

A DfT spokeswoman said the report would be published “in due course”.

“We are committed to taking action to improve the situation for passengers. We have announced £300m for Network Rail to boost the resilience of the Southern network,” the spokeswoman added.

It comes after reports that the Government was looking at the possibility of stripping Govia Thameslink of the franchise because of the consistently poor performance.