COVID-19 Emergency Measures in Rail Franchising Contracts, Department for Transport
As the coronavirus crisis began in March, the number of rail passengers plummeted. This created a huge shortfall in rail industry revenue which, unaddressed, would have left many operators facing imminent financial collapse. The team moved with extraordinary speed to design and implement an innovative and widely-praised commercial agreement to avert this outcome and allow the railway to perform its role as a public service, transporting key workers, medical supplies, food and fuel throughout the lockdown. Subsequently, the team developed and delivered a further 'recovery' agreement with operators, which incentivises financial and performance improvements for passengers and taxpayers.