Monday, 5 July 2010

Ding dong the train is dead!

***Foster review of IEP expected 07:00 Tuesday morning***

More tomorrow...

UPDATE: This from Reuters...

A decision on whether to proceed with a programme to replace the Intercity Express trains will be taken alongside a wider review of government spending in October, the Department for Transport (DfT) said.

No shit Sherlock.

UPDATE: Foster report here...

And just a flavour to wet your appetite:

The Department for Transport’s strategic positions have appeared to some in the industry as susceptible to change and unpredictable. Questions are asked about the coherence of IEP, extended electrification, high speed rail and overall strategy.

The real issue here, I believe, is that there has been insufficient communication between the Department and the industry, including communication about IEP, and this has opened the way for significant negativity to develop. This is a key area for attention and further improvement.

This problem, particularly with IEP, appears to have been amplified by DfT’s procurement approach, which has placed heavy emphasis on commercial confidentiality and thus relied on independent advisers and consultants rather than industry expertise. This has engendered a sense of disengagement and disenchantment which I believe could and should largely have been avoided. I also ask a number of questions about arrangements for managing the costs and coherence of independent advice within the Department.

Smooth words fail to mask damning conclusions.

UPDATE: This from the Shunter...

Erm, so the review concludes by suggesting a further review?

I propose that Captain Deltic should be remitted to do it, but by Friday lunchtime, if he needs that long...

UPDATE: This from Captain Deltic...

Whilst Sir Andrew has taken a notably gentle tone, I found this variant of the motorist seeking directions in Ireland, diverting.

"I must record here that if I had a reasonably blank sheet of paper I would not manage the programme like this"

As for the suggestion made by The Shunter -
please accept my apologies, but owing to pressures of work the earliest I could do this is next Wednesday.

UPDATE: This from the Torygraph...

The announcement by Mr Hammond could also jeopardise as many as 12,500 jobs which the previous Government said would have been created or safeguarded by the project.

Indeed - in Japan.

UPDATE: This from @sharpsharp, via Twitter...

From p22:

Depending on the exact mixture of newly acquired, re-engineered and cascaded rolling stock, and the technical approach to the provision of services beyond the present electrified network, it seems likely that more than half of the benefit on the East Coast route, and probably around three quarters of it on the Great Western routes, could be captured for between 40% and 60% of the cost.

Eye congratulates the Department for Transport on its masterful understanding of Value for Money procurement.