The government is quietly gearing up for a whole new generation of railway privatisation.
Publicly owned Network Rail is being frozen out of a flagship new line between Oxford and Cambridge. The line will be taken over by a brand new company controlling the tracks, using private finance.
This paves the way for the wholesale privatisation of the tracks beneath our trains. It would risk passenger safety and worsen services to make a few corporate bosses rich.
The government haven’t committed to track privatisation -- yet. So there’s time for us to get the transport minister Chris Gralying to rule it out for good, if enough of us pile on the pressure right now.
Chris Grayling, transport minister: rule out privatising the railway tracks and Network Rail. Don’t damage our services or risk passenger safety for corporate profits.
Blocking publicly run Network Rail from a major project is fishy. The government are up to something, and this clears the ground for selling off more and more of our railways. But track privatisation has failed catastrophically before.
When a private company, Railtrack, ran the rails it collapsed after a series of deadly train crashes exposed how it put profits above people. The tracks were brought into public hands to guarantee our safety: that’s why we have Network Rail today!
Ministers are risking everything by flirting with privatising railway tracks all over again now. Southern railway is bogged down in chaos caused by its private owner right now, whereas when the East Coast Mainline was nationalised the service was transformed. It’s clear: our railways need less privatisation, not more.
The SumOfUs community stands up for public services against creeping privatisation. Nearly 20,000 of us stood against privatising Royal Mail. And over 37,000 are calling for Southern rail’s private owner to be stripped of its franchise for gross mismanagement. Let’s put our collective power into gear again, and stop railway track privatisation.
Sign the petition against track privatisation now and let’s end this new tide of privatisation together.