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Cover of report showing entrace to tube station

London Underground: Are the Public Private Partnerships likely to work successfully?

“These are complicated deals, worth a great amount of money and spanning a long period into the future. I welcome the fact that there are prospects for improvement to the Tube. But in the face of the inevitable uncertainty about what the next 30 years will bring, only time will tell whether these prospects are fully realised and, therefore, whether the eventual price that the taxpayer pays is worth it.”

Published:
17 Jun 2004
Report cover showing railway marshalling yard

Network Rail – Making a Fresh Start

“The improvements to planning and cost control are to be welcomed. The outlook is certainly better than it was in 2001. But there are still serious challenges in Network Rail’s own structure and in the rail industry in general which the Government must overcome if we are to see a reliable and affordable rail network in the future.”

Published:
14 May 2004
Cover of improving public transport through light rail report

Improving public transport in England through light rail

Modern light rail systems, such as Croydon Tramlink and Manchester Metrolink, have brought significant benefits to passengers, according to a report Parliament by the head of the National Audit Office, Sir John Bourn. They deliver fast, frequent and reliable services and provide a comfortable and safe journey. Their modern look and attractive services have enhanced … Read more

Published:
23 Apr 2004
Cover of report

Strategic Rail Authority: 2002-2003 Accounts

“I have considered the revised basis of valuing the railway network in the context of my audit of the SRA’s accounts. The approach adopted by the Directors of Network Rail to value the railway infrastructure assets is acceptable under financial reporting standards. It is also consistent with the accounting policies of the SRA and the latter’s requirement to prepare accounts in line with the Accounts Direction issued by the Secretary of State for Transport, including the requirement for the accounts to comply with ‘Executive Non-Departmental Public Bodies: Annual Reports and Accounts Guidance’ issued by HM Treasury.

“The policy is in addition consistent with International Accounting Standards which are planned to be adopted from 2005, whereas the previous basis of valuing the railway network was not consistent with these Standards.”

Published:
6 Feb 2004
Train

Improving passenger rail services through new trains

“While some passengers are enjoying the improved facilities and ride provided by new trains, many others are still waiting for their new trains to enter service. And too often the trains turn out to be unreliable in everyday use because they haven’t been sufficiently tested. The Strategic Rail Authority needs to redouble its efforts to help get new trains into service on time and running reliably for the benefit of passengers and the taxpayer.”

Published:
4 Feb 2004
Passenger plane

Refinancing the Public Private Partnership for National Air Traffic Services

Sir John Bourn, head of the National Audit Office, reported today that the refinancing of the public private partnership for NATS, completed late last year, has put the Company on a much more robust financial footing, enabling it to make further vital investment to expand the capacity of Air Traffic Control to meet future growth … Read more

Published:
7 Jan 2004
Cover of report

Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) 2002-03 Trust Statement

“It is clear that the DVLA continues to recognise the importance of tackling the evasion of vehicle excise duty. But evasion levels are rising and there remains considerable scope for anti-evasion measures to be extended and deployed in a more coherent manner, in particular through the more widespread use of automatic number-plate readers and increased collaboration with local authorities and police forces.”

Published:
12 Sep 2003
Report cover showing road maintenance

Highways Agency: Maintaining England’s Motorways and Trunk Roads

“The Highways Agency has done much to improve the condition of England’s motorways and trunk roads over recent years, and its management of continuing maintenance work, particularly in reducing the impact on road users. However, the Agency could do more to prioritise its resources to projects delivering the best outcome in terms of safety and value for money, and to manage costs effectively over a project’s lifetime.

“The disruption to key parts of the road network caused by the adverse weather conditions at the end of January 2003 shows just how important effective maintenance procedures are. The Agency is investigating the causes of the difficulties faced by many drivers at that time, and plans to review its winter maintenance procedures to prevent a recurrence.”

Published:
5 Mar 2003
Report cover showing a polluted beach

Dealing with pollution from ships

“The Maritime and Coastguard Agency has in recent years strengthened the UK’s ability to deal with marine pollution incidents. The Agency does, however, need to satisfy itself that ports, harbours and coastal local authorities remain capable of protecting the environment from marine pollution, and ensure that it has the ability to recover its costs, prosecute offenders and deter others from polluting.”

Published:
12 Jun 2002