Passenger Track Access Contract: Schedule 5:   Services


This Page Was First Created on 2 September 2010


Schedule 5;  Services


Maximum Journey Times   Schedule 5 Paragraph 7 Provisions applicable to Journey Time protection

Paragraph or Table


Date of Hearing

Points made within Determination  (Verbatim extracts given in Italics, or between quotes)


“Key Journey Time”

ORR’s determination of journey time protection for First Scotrail

Letter of 1 Feb 2010

“The model clause journey time protection provisions

44.        The model passenger contract provides for three different types of journey time protection:

• maximum journey times;

• maximum key journey times; and

• fastest key journey times.

These are all caps on the journey times that Network Rail may schedule a service in the timetable. The differences are explained below.

45.        Maximum journey times provide journey time caps for all services on a specified route with the same calling pattern. However, in advance of the development of a timetable, these caps are automatically amended to reflect any changes in sectional running times, station dwell times, performance allowances, engineering recovery allowances and any other allowances provided for in the Rules of the Route (RoR) or RoP. They are therefore a cap on the amount of pathing time which Network Rail can insert.

46.        Maximum key journey times are similar to maximum journey times in that they provide journey time caps for all services on a specified route with the same calling pattern. However, as these are "key" journey times, Network Rail is not permitted to propose or agree to any changes to the RoR/RoP that would prevent it from scheduling a service within the maximum key journey time cap. Because maximum key journey times apply to a number of services, rather than just one service per day as is the case for fastest key journey times (see below), we expect there to be a reasonable degree of headroom included within the cap to ensure that there is not an undue constraint on Network Rail's flexibility to timetable the network on behalf of all users.

47.        Fastest key journey times apply only to one train per day, and therefore give the least flexibility to Network Rail. They are intended to protect the capability of the network by establishing the fastest time that a train can travel between set points on the network, subject to a very limited degree of flexibility. This time would not necessarily be achievable for all train slots, but gives the operator a "headline" journey time. Fastest key journey times would, for instance, be used for "flagship" intercity train slots. To exercise this right, the operator must bid for at least three slots on any weekday with the characteristics specified in the table. Network Rail can then choose which of the train slots should run within the fastest key journey time. In practice, these journeys would generally have minimal pathing time. As with maximum key journey times, Network Rail is not permitted to propose or agree to any changes to the RoR/RoP that would prevent it from scheduling a journey time within the fastest key journey time cap.

48.        The difference between maximum journey times and the two types of "key" journey times is therefore relevant during the RoR/RoP process at the start of each timetable process. When it comes to timetabling the trains following establishment of the RoR/RoP, the protection works the same way for all three i.e. they must be timetabled within the specified journey times in accordance with the terms of the contractual protection.”


Schedule 5 paragraph 7.1:


Journey time protection in relation to Applicable Rules of the Route and Applicable ROTP


March 2010

35.    Here the Panel finds that, in relation to WCT’s very specifically protected Firm Rights, and Network Rail’s rights to implement Restrictions of Use, the following considerations apply, and derive from the operation of all the procedures contemplated in Part D of the Network Code and the incorporated Rules of the Plan, and Rules of the Route:

35.1.     Restrictions of Use are specific single events, each catering for particular work.   They can be incorporated into the Working Timetable using the Rules of the Route consultation process as laid down in Conditions D2.1 Review of the Rules of the Route/Rules of the Plan, or D2.2 Possession Strategy Notice, or D4.8 Supplemental Timetable Revision Process, all of which processes are subject to challenge by Train Operators;

35.2.     the outcome of such processes can be that

35.2.1.   the work is be undertaken within the span of a Standard Possession Opportunity (Section 4 of the Rules of the Route);

35.2.2.   the work requires possessions that exceed the Standard Possession Times and are detailed in Section 5 Possession Strategy and/or Section 7 Register of Possessions;

35.3.     individual Restrictions of Use established in accordance with the due processes and incorporated into the Applicable Rules of the Route, may require rescheduling of WCT trains, and such rescheduled Train Slots need not, in accordance with the terms of Paragraph 7.1(c), comply with the Key Journey Time provisions in Table 6;

35.4.     in the absence of any specific Restriction of Use (which may include a recurring Restriction of Use), extending WCT’s Journey Times beyond the limits defined in Table 6 (e.g. to accommodate a standard 2TTR) has no contractual sanction, and is therefore a breach of WCT’s rights.

38.1.     Except where Network Rail can demonstrate, on a case by case basis, that there are such specific circumstances as are contemplated by WCT Schedule 5 paragraph 7.1(c), namely a Restriction of Use that has been incorporated into the Applicable Rules of the Route

38.1.1.               it is bound by the provisions of WCT Track Access Contract Schedule 5 paragraph 7.1(a), including in respect of the Key Journey Time Firm Rights with which all Offers of Train Slots should comply and therefore

38.1.2.               is precluded, by those same provisions, from proposing for incorporation into the Applicable Rules of the Plan, or Applicable Rules of the Route, any amendments that, would prevent it from:

·        scheduling a Journey Time which is equal to or less than the Fastest Key Journey Time in respect of at least one Passenger Train Slot for each of the Key Journeys specified in Table 6.2 in respect of each Weekday; and

·        which is equal to or less than the Maximum Key Journey Time specified for every Passenger Train Slot consistent with each Key Journey of the type specified in Table 6.3; and

should be taking all necessary steps to ensure that only Train Slots compliant with WCT’s Firm Rights are incorporated into the Working Timetable.

38.2.     Where a current Offer does not comply with a Key Journey Time provision at the behest, or with the acquiescence, of WCT, Network Rail is not absolved from the need to achieve compliant Offers, but the Panel would accept that this might be a matter of lower priority. .    [TTP324]


Schedule 5 paragraph 7.5:


Journey time Review  provisions

ORR’s determination of journey time protection for First Scotrail

Letter of 1st Feb 2010

“Journey times review notice process

51.        Virtually all rights in a track access contract are subject to the RoR and the RoP. In respect of the RoR, this is because rights should not unduly obstruct Network Rail's maintenance and renewal requirements. In respect of the RoP this is because it is quite likely that that certain allowances contained within them may need to change over the lifetime of a track access contract.

52.        Among the very few rights that are not subject to the RoP is key journey time protection where Network Rail is prevented from proposing or agreeing to any amendments to the RoP which would prevent it from scheduling a key journey time. Because of the considerable constraint this places on Network Rail, key journey times would normally only be agreed for an operator's most commercially important services on key routes.

53.        However, because it is envisaged that there may occasionally be a very good reason to change the RoP which would result in a breach of the journey time protection, or conversely, that the journey time protection should be tightened, e.g. in order to take account of line speed improvements, and the parties cannot agree this mutually, the model contract contains a process whereby either party can seek to amend any of the journey time protections in Schedule 5.”


The granting of Journey Time Protection

ORR’s determination of journey time protection for First Scotrail

Letter of 1st Feb 2010

“ORR's approach to approving journey time protection

55.        We expect contractual journey time protection to contain a degree of flexibility so that Network Rail can provide for changes to successive timetables over the life of the contract, including accommodating future growth. We would usually expect the majority of journey time protection to be in the form of maximum journey times which are subject to the RoP/RoR which include industry consultation, agreement and appeal procedures if necessary.

56.        Because of the restrictions they place on Network Rail's flexibility in constructing the timetable, in our C&Ps [criteria and procedures] we say that we would not expect all journeys to be covered by key journey times. We would expect this level of protection to be given "to an operator's most commercially important services on key routes". These journey times should include a reasonable amount of headroom above the minimum achievable to afford Network Rail some flexibility in the design of the timetable.

57.        We do not specify what we mean by "an operator's most commercially important services on key routes" but consider that they would be those services where there is a very strong relationship between journey time and passenger demand that makes it a commercial imperative for the operator to have contractual protection as extended journey times could have a significant adverse affect on the operator's revenue. On these services, journey time is a key factor in the competitiveness of rail against other modes of transport. This is particularly the case for intercity services where private or air transport can provide viable alternatives for customers”


“101.     Our policy is that maximum key journey times should include a reasonable amount of additional time above the clean path time (i.e. the minimum achievable time) to afford Network Rail that same flexibility in the design of the timetable(in this [Scotrail] dispute we have referred to this flexibility as “headroom”).   Under the model contract provisions, even with “key” journey times Network Rail can propose changes to the RoP, e.g. to extend sectional running times, as long as it can still timetable the service within the key journey time cap.”


“110.     …in considering the services for which ScotRail has sought journey time protection we have had regard to the following principles:

(a)     because of the constraints they place on Network Rail, key journey times should only be approved for services that are very commercially important (i.e. in terms of passenger revenue);

(b)     other than in very exceptional circumstances we should not approve provisions in a bilateral contract that frustrate multilateral network code processes;

(c)     we should not object to any of the protection that Network Rail is prepared to offer on the basis that we are broadly content with what is proposed.”