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Railhub Archive
1998-02-03 ORR-001
Office of the Rail Regulator


Rail Regulator launches rolling stock review

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Office of the Rail Regulator

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Office of the Rail Regulator

Rail Regulator launches rolling stock review

related documents

Review of the rolling stock market (ORR, 1998)


3 February 1998
source Office of the Rail Regulator
type Press release

note ORR/98/05

The Rail Regulator, John Swift QC, today launched his review of the operation of the rolling stock companies following the recent request from the Deputy Prime Minister, John Prescott.

Inviting contributions to the review Mr Swift says :"It has a clear focus : whether the future price, quality and availability of rolling stock is likely to meet the reasonable requirements of train operators. Those are serious issues. They should be resolved so as to promote the use and development of the railway in the manner which best meets the needs of passengers, and which provides best value for money for taxpayers.

"The Rolling Stock Companies' own equipment is vital to the effective operation of a passenger railway dependent on public subsidy. As such, I believe they have a public interest stewardship role, just as, for example, Railtrack has duties as the steward of the national rail network. This implies an obligation to take a proactive and positive approach to the provision of rolling stock in a way which reflects the needs of train operators and passengers,"Mr Swift said.

Mr Swift asks for views on a number of areas of concern about the present actions of the rolling stock companies and the market in which they operate. These include:

o whether the ROSCOs have market power and, if so, is it in respect of all their activities or, for example, only some types of rolling stock or some customers;
o if ROSCOs do have market power, evidence of present behaviour which could constitute an abuse of that market power;
o whether there are particular future events (such as lease renewal) which would allow market power to be exercised; and
o whether the inability to impose public interest requirements on owners of rolling stock of the sort included in railway licences has caused problems, and, if so, which are the particular areas of difficulty.

The document indicates possible solutions and invites comments on the likely effectiveness of the different approaches in remedying any problems or potential problems identified in the responses.

Responses to the consultation document are required by Monday, 2 March 1998.

Copies of the consultation document - Review of the Rolling Stock Market - are available from Sue MacSwan, ORR Library, 1 Waterhouse Square, 138-142 Holborn, London EC1N 2ST (Tel: 0171 282 2001; Fax 0171 282 2045). E-mail :

Railhub Archive ::: 1998-02-03 ORR-001


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