GBRTT Partnership to Deliver Locally-Accountable West Midlands Rail Services

The West Midlands Rail Executive (WMRE) has partnered with the Great British Railways Transition Team (GBRTT) to deliver a more locally accountable railway in the West Midlands.

This collaboration will support the region’s Trailblazer Deeper Devolution Deal which was signed by the West Midlands Combined Authority and the UK government in March 2023.

The partnership will support better integration of rail into the wider public transport and active travel network in West Midlands
The partnership will support better integration of rail into the wider public transport and active travel network in West Midlands

By giving local leaders more influence over the railway, this deal aims to improve services and integrate rail into the wider West Midlands transport network.

For example, the partnership will enable fully integrated multi-modal fares to be delivered through the West Midlands’ Swift platform, with a pilot agreement for a new pay-as-you-go ticketing offer to be announced soon.

Mal Drury- Rose, Executive Director of the WMRE said:

“I am excited by this partnership which will deliver enhanced local accountability and influence and therefore enable rail to better serve the people of the West Midlands. We’ve made significant progress on integrating West Midlands Railway with other public transport services through our existing partnerships with DfT and the rail industry. However, this new GBRTT/WMRE partnership will go one step further – improving customers’ experience at stations, on trains and as they move between bus and tram.”

Specifically, the partnership will:

  • Improve the customer experience at stations and onboard trains through customer information, wayfinding and branding initiatives
  • Make it easier for customers to make end-to-end public transport journeys across the West Midlands
  • Ensure the railway supports local authorities’ future plans for transport, housing and health to help deliver economic growth

This announcement follows a similar partnership between Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) and GBRTT to deliver a more integrated and locally accountable rail network in Greater Manchester.

Rufus Boyd, Interim GBRTT Lead Director, said:

“GBRTT’s vision for a future guiding mind for rail is to bring different parties together so that decisions about train services are made in partnership with people who know what's best for their region.

“This new partnership with the West Midlands is an example of that vision, and brings together key organisations involved in the wider region's transport. As well as enabling people to make and pay for journeys seamlessly across trains, buses and trams, this improved connectivity and joint approach can unlock jobs, housing and economic growth across the wider region.”

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