The official view on our train services

There are national standards for punctuality, reliability and so on. Plus we have our own expectations.

The Public Performance Measure

The national standard for measuring punctuality is the percentage of trains that arrive at their final destination within ten minutes of the advertised time. It’s called the Public Performance Measure or PPM, and we publish our target and achieved PPM every four weeks.

Running a 'right time' railway

We don’t only think about whether a train gets to its destination on time. For plenty of passengers, what matters is how late a train’s been at other stations along the route. So we also measure our punctuality performance along a service’s entire route. It’s a more detailed measure than PPM, and gives us more insight into what’s really affecting our customers’ journeys. 

We’re focusing our efforts on trains that are two minutes late our worst performing trains, and reducing delays at stations. And it’s working. Our ‘right time’ performance is significantly higher than the average for all long distance train operators.

Why are trains late?

We have a good record of trains arriving on time, but there’s always room for improvement. A lot of delays are caused by problems out of our control – for instance, overhead power cables are the single biggest cause for delays. So we work with partners like Network Rail, pushing for investment in track, signals and overhead power lines.

Investments and improvements

New trains please

From early 2019, you’ll see our brand-spanking new Azuma trains whizzing along the East Coast route. And we’ve also treated our existing trains to a few upgrades, including new a on-train monitoring system that helps us identify and report faults faster and more accurately than ever before, and our new electronic seat sensors which help you find a seat onboard.