In an interim report into Northern’s May timetable collapse the Office of Road and Rail have singled out Northern, Network Rail and the Department for Transport for criticism. The report concludes that “nobody took charge” even when it became clear months earlier that the planned timetable changes were in serious trouble.
Local commuters have been subject to overcrowding and last minute cancellations throughout the year as a result of these failings, and the service wasn’t good enough to begin with.
In my Parliamentary debate on Northern trains back in June I said that the Secretary of State for Transport must take ultimate responsibility for these issues and take action to put things right, or he needs to go.
If the Secretary of State for Transport denies responsibility and won't do anything to improve the situation for rail passengers, then it's time for him to go and take Arriva with him. pic.twitter.com/6jn1pFAVNu
— David Crausby (@DavidCrausby) June 6, 2018
The Secretary of State for Transport is supposed to provide leadership and direction, and hold the rail operators to account when things go wrong. Chris Grayling wasn’t doing that before the timetable chaos, he didn’t do it when the service collapsed, and he continues not doing that today.
This morning I spoke to Tower FM about our railways and I called for Chris Grayling to finally take some responsibility and resign his position.