No plan in place for Brexit driving permits surge, say auditors

No plan in place for Brexit driving permits surge, say auditors

Post offices could need to issue up to 7m permits in first 12 months after no-deal Brexit

The government has no business plan if post offices are forced to issue up to 7m international driving permits in a single year in the event of a no-deal Brexit, Whitehall’s spending watchdog has disclosed.

A National Audit Office report examining the Department for Transport’s readiness for leaving the EU also expresses concern that plans to manage traffic flow at Dover without a deal are behind schedule.

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Source: Guardian Transport

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Government urged to strip Govia Thameslink Railway of its franchise

Government urged to strip Govia Thameslink Railway of its franchise

No need to wait for review of timetable chaos, shadow transport secretary says

The government must “stop pussyfooting around” and strip Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) of its franchise, the shadow transport secretary has demanded as MPs described the ongoing disruption to rail services in their constituencies.

Andy McDonald described the rail operator as a “disgraceful company” as he asked what it had to do to lose its contract.

Related: Thameslink commuters have had enough. We need a new deal | Daisy Cooper

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Source: Guardian Transport

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HS2 accused of breaching cycle crossing commitments along high speed route

HS2 accused of breaching cycle crossing commitments along high speed route

Government-owned company has back-pedalled on its pledge to cycle-proof the line, say campaigners, locking out cyclists for generations to come

The company building the HS2 high speed rail line is accused of watering down commitments on cycle crossings along the route, in a move campaigners say will endanger lives and lock out cycling for generations to come.

The government-owned company, HS2 Ltd, was accused of back-pedalling on its legally-binding assurance that it would “cycle-proof” phase 1 of HS2, from London to the West Midlands, earlier this year by Cycling UK, the national cycling charity. The assurances, which became legally binding when they were incorporated into the High Speed Rail Act, stated HS2 Ltd would have a dialogue with the Cycle Proofing Working Group (CPWG), a government advisory body, with the assumption that they would include high quality design standards.

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Source: Guardian Transport

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State of emergency proclaimed over dock strike – archive, 17 July 1970

State of emergency proclaimed over dock strike – archive, 17 July 1970

17 July 1970: With dockers giving almost total support to the strike, the government decided to invoke the Emergency Powers Act of 1920

A state of emergency was proclaimed yesterday by the Queen as the national dock strike brought complete disruption to the ports. Soon afterwards, the Government announced the setting up of a Court of Inquiry into the dispute. No final decision on its chairman has yet been made, but a strong candidate is Lord Pearson, who accepted a similar assignment during the seaman’s strike of 1966.

Mr Jack Jones, of the Transport and General Workers’ Union, received both announcements with unconcealed disapproval. He questioned the wisdom of sending troops into the docks, and said the unions would be willing to give evidence to the court, “but without obligation.” From now on, however, the unions would continue to develop the “full strength of the strike.”

Related: Dockers’ leader passed strike tactics to MI5 agents during national stoppage

Related: Direct action! Seventy years of strikes in pictures from the GNM Archive

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Source: Guardian Transport

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The expensive disaster that is bus privatisation | Letters

The expensive disaster that is bus privatisation | Letters
Alan Whitehouse and Veronica Hardstaff reply to a letter from the Confederation of Passenger Transport UK, and Rosemary Howorth, Michael Gold and John Ainsworth respond to articles by Lynsey Hanley and Anna Bawden

Just as some sections of the railway industry believe that privatisation ushered in an era of passenger growth, so Pauline Gaunt of the Confederation of Passenger Transport UK claims that privatised buses have stemmed the decline in bus use (Deregulation and Britain’s bus services, Letters, 12 July).

Both are wrong. We do not know why more people are using trains any more than we know why fewer people are using buses, because no one has done the research to tell us. But we can make a few educated guesses.

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Source: Guardian Transport

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Motorway roadworks speed limit could rise to 60mph on Sundays

Motorway roadworks speed limit could rise to 60mph on Sundays

Highways England suggests increase from 50mph when road workers are less active

Drivers could be allowed to travel at higher speeds through motorway roadworks depending on the day of the week.

Speed limits could be increased from 50mph to 60mph when there is less activity by road workers, Highways England said. This could see limits increased on Sundays.

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Source: Guardian Transport

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Northern cancels 170 train services, with 'staff unavailable'

Northern cancels 170 train services, with 'staff unavailable'

Under-fire rail operator says more services likely to be scrapped on Sunday

The railway company Northern has announced more than 170 train services will be cancelled on Sunday.

The train operator said it was likely more services would be scrapped, with Cheshire, Lancashire and Greater Manchester faring the worst, and Yorkshire also affected.

Related: Thameslink commuters have had enough. We need a new deal | Daisy Cooper

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Source: Guardian Transport

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Thameslink commuters have had enough. We need a new deal | Daisy Cooper

Thameslink commuters have had enough. We need a new deal | Daisy Cooper
We’ve been failed by Govia Thameslink and Chris Grayling. Now we’re taking matters into our own hands

On Tuesday, normally mild-mannered commuters from St Albans waved placards and chanted outside London’s St Pancras station in protest at the new Thameslink timetable, which has brought misery to thousands of people. Inspired by those who protested against Govia’s Southern Rail, Govia Thameslink passengers are also now taking to the streets.

Delays and cancellations have been a daily occurrence since the new timetable was introduced in late May, but those at least are recorded by the industry. It’s the physical, mental, financial and professional impact that takes its toll the most, but this isn’t factored into any offer of compensation. This is why St Albans commuters are taking matters into our own hands.

Related: The great timetable fiasco: what’s gone wrong with England’s railways?

Related: Ministers urged to up public spending on rail, green energy and digital

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Source: Guardian Transport

<a href="Thameslink commuters have had enough. We need a new deal | Daisy Cooper” target=”_blank”>Thameslink commuters have had enough. We need a new deal | Daisy Cooper

Disabled passengers 'treated unacceptably' at four UK airports

Disabled passengers 'treated unacceptably' at four UK airports

Aviation watchdog points finger at Gatwick, Stansted, Birmingham and Manchester

Disabled passengers are being treated unacceptably at four major UK airports, the aviation watchdog has said.

The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) assessed all airports in Britain, with London Gatwick, London Stansted and Birmingham airports told they needed to improve accessibility for disabled passengers.

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Source: Guardian Transport

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Deregulation and Britain’s bus services | Letters

Deregulation and Britain’s bus services | Letters
Response from the Confederation of Passenger Transport UK to an article on the London bus market

Your article (It’s not only Londoners who rely on buses and trains, Journal, 11 July) ignores the fact that bus patronage was in very steep decline before 1986, when deregulation was introduced. Figures show that deregulation has actually stemmed that decline. In the 15 years before deregulation patronage declined by 31%, yet it took about 30 years for patronage to decline by about the same level.

This highlights that when bus services are under the control of cash-strapped local authorities, fares are higher, the market is less stable, services are being lost, and passenger satisfaction rates are lower.

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Source: Guardian Transport

<a href="Deregulation and Britain’s bus services | Letters” target=”_blank”>Deregulation and Britain’s bus services | Letters