Lord Hendy reappointed Network Rail chair


Lord Peter Hendy has been reappointed as chair of Network Rail for two more years, with a brief to ensure a ‘smooth transition to Great British Railways’ (GBR), despite the absence of a timetable for the new body.

Lord Hendy has been chair of the rail infrastructure operator since 2015 and was last reappointed in 2021. He was previously Commissioner of Transport for London for nine years.

Lord Peter Hendy

The Department for Transport (DfT) said his role as chair will be vital in steering Network Rail’s five-year plan, and that his continued service ‘will also ensure continuity and a smooth transition to Great British Railways’, using his knowledge and experience to oversee a vital period of transformation which will bring track and train together.

Transport secretary Mark Harper said: ‘I have no doubt he will help oversee a seamless transition to Great British Railways, delivering our shared goals of a rail network that drives modernisation and economic growth while enhancing the role of the private sector.’

Lord Hendy said: ‘I am looking forward to supporting Andrew Haines, chief executive, and his team, in maintaining and improving Network Rail's delivery, now and into the next five-year funding period.

'I will also do everything I can to move the reform agenda, and the creation of Great British Railways, forward as soon as possible.’

In the House of Commons last week Mr Harper declined to confirm that the Government would bring forward legislation during the current Parliament to establish GBR, stating only that ministers ‘remain committed… to moving forward on delivering’ it, much of which ‘can be delivered without legislation’.

Mr Harper also declined to agree to a suggestion from Transport Select Committee chair Iain Stewart MP that GBR should be set up as a shadow authority, despite agreeing with Mr Stewart that the industry’s finances need to be joined up and stating that ministers are ‘actively working’ to do this without legislation.

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