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2002-03-19 DTR-002
Department of Transport, Local Government and the Regions

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Byers responds to report on the rail industry


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Department of Transport, Local Government and the Regions

Byers responds to report on the rail industry
_______________________________________________________________


date
19 Mar 2002 00:00
source Department of Transport, Local Government and the Regions
type Press release



Transport Secretary Stephen Byers today published his response to the House of Commons Select Committee's Report on the operation of the rail industry.

Publishing the document, Stephen Byers said:

"I am pleased to be publishing this response to the helpful report from the Select Committee and in particular I welcome the Committee's agreement that the decision I made in putting Railtrack into administration was the correct one.

"It is particularly pleasing to note that Railtrack is doubling their graduate intake from 35 to 70 and has received many good quality applications.

"Contrary to statements that staff are leaving in droves, Railtrack is attracting good numbers of high quality candidates for vacancies at all levels of the organisation. Since 8 October, they have recruited 69 qualified engineers and are on course to achieve a target of 1000 engineers in post within 18 months. The rate of staff turnover remains steady - that for engineers is just 6%.

"ATOC have said that they have had a good and developing relationship with Railtrack since administration and particularly since the appointment of John Armitt. These are all positive signs for the future but the Government is not complacent and much remains to be done.

"The important objective is now to use the period of administration to improve performance and to ensure there is a long-term commitment from everyone involved in the rail industry to work together to deliver the improvements in the rail system that passengers deserve.

"The Committee's report contained some detailed recommendations on the operation of the rail network and the successor to Railtrack. It merited careful study and a detailed response. Our response reaffirms my determination to put the interests of rail passengers first and confirms that the Government's 10 year commitment to the rail industry remains valid and firmly in place."

Notes to Editors

1. The House of Commons Transport, Local Government and the Regions Select Committee published it report: "Passenger Rail Franchising and the Future of Railway Infrastructure," on 31 January 2002.

2. The Department's response to the Parliament is published today as a Command Paper. Copies of the document are available from HMSO.

Press Enquiries: 020 7944 3108 Out of Hours: 020 7944 5925 E-mail: press@dtlr.gov.uk
Public Enquiries: 020 7944 3000
DTLR website: http://www.dtlr.gov.uk



Railhub Archive ::: 2002-03-19 DTR-002





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