Fragmented railways will never work, public or private | Simon Jenkins
As long as Britain’s trains and infrastructure are run as separate entities, the chaos will continue
Imagine going into a restaurant, sitting down and giving your order to the waiter. The order is then passed into a back kitchen, where someone employed by a different owner is contracted to cook it, arguing all the time with his lawyers and accountants over the recipe and the price. That is Britain’s rail system, born of idiocy and ideology in Whitehall 25 years ago. It is demoralised and it is broken.
This week’s report by the rail regulator, the Office of Road and Rail, on this year’s timetabling chaos could hardly be clearer. “Nobody took charge.” In a time-sensitive service industry, chopping up the supply chain is fatal. Restaurants must run their kitchens. Train companies must run their tracks and stations. As the crisis mounted everyone thought someone else could take the blame.
Source: Guardian Transport