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2002-12-18 SRA-001
Strategic Rail Authority

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SRA welcomes new trains for Scotland / appoints team to oversee replacement of Scotrail franchise


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Strategic Rail Authority

SRA welcomes new trains for Scotland / appoints team to oversee replacement of Scotrail franchise
_______________________________________________________________


date
18 December 2002
source Strategic Rail Authority
type Press release



The SRA today welcomed the announcement by the Scottish Executive of a
major investment package of new trains, drivers and ticketing facilities for
Scotland's rail passenger network.

An initial £5.4 million package is the result of close co-operation between the
Scottish Executive, the SRA and the parent company of ScotRail, National
Express. This follows significant research, planning and evaluation work
conducted by the Scottish Executive and the SRA. The detailed elements of
the package provide for:

22 new three car trains (66 carriages), the first of which are expected to
be on stream by Autumn 2003;

Investment for the recruitment and training of extra train drivers to
improve reliability;

Tightened performance targets for ScotRail to secure better time
keeping and fewer cancellations;

The introduction of automatic ticket barriers at Waverley, Haymarket
and Queen Street stations and 10 self service ticket machines by the
end of 2003.

This is in addition to six new trains, already announced, which will serve the
Strathclyde Passenger Transport area and Edinburgh Park.

Commenting on the announcement, SRA Chairman, Richard Bowker said:
"This welcome investment will have real benefits for Scottish rail passengers
in terms of longer trains, greater frequency and improved punctuality - in
short, the better service that customers expect and deserve. This
announcement demonstrates too, how that better service can be secured
through the more efficient and effective use of the existing network, which is
the purpose of our capacity utilisation strategy."

This investment demonstrates the SRA's commitment to real, value for money
improvements to passenger services and will help to provide for a smooth
transition to the next ScotRail franchise.

In a further statement, the SRA has today announced the composition of the
senior team who will take forward the re-letting of the ScotRail passenger
franchise from January 2003.

The two appointments have been made to direct and oversee the re-letting
process to replace the e xisting ScotRail franchise, which expires in April 2004.
Both appointees will be based in Edinburgh.

David Palmer, 41, who has been appointed as ScotRail Team Leader, brings
to his new role an impressive track record of senior public sector experience
in Scotland. This includes five years in policy development and
implementation, and ten years experience as a Government economist. Most
recently, David managed the team within the Scottish Executive that
controlled, co-ordinated and delivered the annual £25bn Scottish Budget.

Mark Mather, 42, who has been appointed as Replacement Team Manager,
has an impressive record of project planning, budgetary control and vendor
management within the private sector. Most recently, Mark managed the
Projects office for Alcatel Optronics UK Ltd., providing leadership and
guidance on all aspects of life cycle management within the company.

Richard Bowker, SRA Chairman, said:
"These two first class appointments ensure effective delivery of the next
ScotRail franchise and emphasise the SRA's commitment to ensuring that the
re-letting process is driven by the highest standards of leadership and
direction. We are confident that David and Mark will be extremely successful
in their new roles and are delighted to have them on board."

Notes to Editors:

New investment package
1. The package will result in improvements in the quality and comfort of
trains along the Edinburgh and Glasgow to Aberdeen and Inverness
routes. It will increase peak hour capacity and greater reliability on the
Edinburgh to Glasgow route and increased capacity on routes serving
Fife which will tackle overcrowding.
2. The 22 new trains will increase Scotland's rolling stock fleet by 10 extra
three carriage trains plus an additional 12 which will replace some of
the oldest and poorest quality rolling stock such as the 12 x class 150s.

ScotRail franchise appointments
1. ScotRail operates the vast majority of passenger rail services in
Scotland, and its services extend across the border to Carlisle. It also
provides certain through services between Stranraer and Newcastle,
and the Sleeper services between London Euston and Glasgow,
Edinburgh, Inverness, Aberdeen and Fort William. In the Glasgow
area, ScotRail operates passenger rail services on behalf of
Strathclyde Passenger Transport Executive (PTE).
2. Expressions of interest were received for the new ScotRail franchise in
November 2002 and the form of the final contract and the detailed
specification for the franchise will be subject to the approval of the
Scottish Ministers


Railhub Archive ::: 2002-12-18 SRA-001





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