Tuesday, 23 March 2010

TOCland issues clarion call in The Thunderer

Telegrammed by Bulldog Drummond
With all the excitement of yesterday's 'Lobbygate' an extraordinarily wooden and otiose letter in The Times may have gone unnoticed.

Signed by the great and the good of the passenger railway it ends with a clarion call designed to raise the spirits of all railwaymen, as well as admirers of the reckless use of the infinitive:

'We call on them (the main political parties) to commit to the investment to continue improving the railways making better use of the talents of train operators and creating an environment which makes rail a more attractive investment for the private sector.'

It is certain that this demand for lots more lovely lolly to go straight to TOCland will be seriously entertained by Whitehall in these straitened times.

And one can only imagine the gloom that has settled over Network Rail's Kings Place HQ, knowing that such powerful forces for change and naked self-interest have been released. Even now Iain Coucher is reported to be barely able to contain his white hot anger, having been so effectively outflanked.

Strangely one significant owning company was conspicuous by its absence from this ATOC led epistlefest.

Step forward Byers' 'client' - National Express!

UPDATE: This from Ithuriel...

What world are these people living in?

Everybody knows that the current cost of the railway is unsustainable.

The DfT Rail Director Technical & Professional has said in public that at current costs the railway is unsustainable

DfT and ORR have commissioned a review into Value for Money across the industry.

ORR is concerned about cost pressures on the full Thameslink programme.

DfT Rail has just decided that lengthening the rest of the Pendolino fleet does not represent value for money.

Engineering costs on Network Rail are reported to be double those of European Railways.

We face a period of unprecedented austerity in public spending.

Despite there being a war on even the Ministry of Defence has been ordered to determine the cancellation costs of every programme.

And yet here are these purported leaders of the industry asking for MORE money?

Sergeant Markoff, late of Fort Zinderneuf has advice for this multination legion of train operators.

"De merde toi Legionaire"

Which translates as "Not with my taxes"!