Mark Carne will take over as head of Network Rail on February 24 – several weeks earlier than originally planned.
In an announcement today (February 14), Network Rail said Carne had spent the last month ‘meeting staff, partners and funders, customers and experiencing projects’, including seeing firsthand the damage in Dawlish caused by the recent poor weather.
Network Rail chairman Richard Parry-Jones said Carne’s introduction to the organisation was being brought forward to “get going on this next chapter” of Britain’s railway.
Parry-Jones said: “With so much going on at the moment and the atrocious weather affecting our customers and testing the resilience of both our people and the network, Mark, David (Higgins) and I have discussed the matter and thought it best Mark get his feet under the table sooner rather than later.
“We have clear priorities; safely restoring services to normal, making our network more resilient and wisely spending and investing our £38bn funding package to make Britain’s railways better.”