Network Rail has announced that its profits more than halved, from £1.035 billion to £506 million over the past year.
Profits (after tax) dropped even more, from £1,256m to a £376m loss, while revenues fell to £6.08bn from £6.33bn. Network Rail’s debts widened to £37.8bn from less than £33bn the year before.
The company had invested a record £3.4 billion in expanding and growing the rail network in 2014/15 – with the expenditure being double the level of five years ago(£1.6bn in 2009/10).
Over the same 12-month period, the number of people travelling by rail grew 67.3m to a new record high in modern times of 1.65bn. Passenger numbers have now more than doubled in the past 20 years and although this increase has meant that we are not hitting punctuality targets, more passengers are arriving on time than ever before.
Patrick Butcher, finance director, said: “The railways continue to grow in popularity and we continue to invest heavily to respond to that demand. While progress is being made in improving performance, safety, asset reliability and delivering more renewals and projects, our rate of acceleration in these areas isn’t yet where we want it to be.