Lord lands interim TfL role as Byford flies out


London Transport Commissioner Andy Byford is to leave the role after just two years, but ‘having delivered against the priorities he set at the start of his tenure’, Transport for London (TfL) has announced.

Chief operating officer Andy Lord – an aviation expert – will step in as Commissioner on an interim basis.

Mr Byford

TfL said Mr Byford, who became Transport Commissioner in June 2020, will leave at the end of October to resume life in the United States, closing out a 33 year public service career.

It added that he had delivered against the priorities he set at the start of his tenure – to get the Elizabeth line opened without any further delay, and to lead TfL out of the financial crisis caused by the pandemic.

TfL said Mr Byford has also overseen the creation of a new, more efficient organisational structure and the introduction of a new TfL vision and set of values, with the organisation now focused on winning back customers, supporting the city’s economic recovery and helping to build a greener city with sustainable transport at its centre.

Mr Byford said: ‘The opening of the Elizabeth line was, without doubt, the highlight of my career – made truly poignant as it was one of the last major events attended by Her Majesty the Queen. It was an honour to meet her, and an honour to oversee the transport arrangements for the ceremonial events to mark her passing.'

Mr Lord joined TfL in November 2019 as managing director of London Underground, and became chief operating officer for all of TfL's operations earlier this year.

He previously spent nearly 30 years in the commercial aviation sector, including 26 years at British Airways.

Mr Lord

He said: ‘The work of TfL staff has been key to London’s recovery from the pandemic so far. I am hugely honoured to take on this role and to have the opportunity to steer the organisation as it continues this work and focuses on making our city an even greener, safer and better place.’

London mayor Sadiq Khan said: ‘Andy Byford deserves huge thanks for his hard work and dedication, leading Transport for London through an exceptional time in its history.

‘From keeping the city moving during the COVID-19 pandemic, to the historic opening of the Elizabeth line this year, Andy has provided Londoners with an exceptional service and his work has ensured that despite the challenges we have faced, our public transport network remains world-class.

‘I’m grateful to Andy Lord for stepping into the role of interim Transport Commissioner. Andy brings with him a wealth of experience and commitment to leading our city’s public transport network, and the recruitment for the new permanent Commissioner will commence shortly.’

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