The Go-Ahead Group plc has announced that an agreement has been reached with the Department for Transport (“DfT”) regarding contractual matters in relation to the GTR franchise. This agreement resolves matters relating to the industry-wide failures concerning the introduction of the May timetable, as well as bringing to a close discussions around other outstanding contractual variations.
As part of the agreement, a plan for the remainder of the franchise term to 2021 has been agreed, aimed at building on recent performance improvement and improving customer journeys. GTR will provide £15m of funding this year for passenger enhancements.
The agreement reduces uncertainty around the future of the GTR franchise and its financial performance. A profit-sharing mechanism with the DfT will also be introduced for the remainder of the franchise. As a result, the margin over the franchise term is now expected to be between 0.75 to 1 per cent (previously 0.75 to 1.5 per cent), with no profit expected in the current financial year. The Group’s full year expectations for the current financial year remain unchanged, in line with the trading update published on 29 November 2018.
Go-Ahead Chief Executive, David Brown, said:
“We recognise that the industry-wide failures in delivering the May timetable created huge difficulties for our customers, and we are sorry for the poor service they received. Since the introduction of the interim timetable in July, performance has greatly improved, and now includes over 200 new services for customers, with further additional services to be introduced this month. This agreement will deliver additional benefits to passengers to be agreed in consultation with our customers.”