My Recent Writing
One of areas where the Labour manifesto needs improvement is transport. It is rarely a frontline area at election time, and although the nationalisation of the railways proved a popular pledge, there was little on how Labour could make a decisive shift towards a more environmentally friendly policy that would also improve people’s journey experience. Cycling received barely a mention, and among Labour activists it is often thought that...
HS2 seems to be moving inexorably forward with the letting this week of several initial contracts to the tune of £6.6bn for tunnels and preparatory work. While the project has not quite reached the point of no return it is certainly odds on that the first section, the line from London to Birmingham, will go ahead. Yet apart from the Parliamentary bill process which was more akin to a...
Our railways have undoubtedly got safer. Every year, Andrew Evans, a professor at Imperial College produces a statistical analysis of the trends in rail safety both in the UK and in Europe. The British section has made particularly comforting reading for several years as, there has not been a fatal rail accident for more than a decade on the national network (trams are not included in his analysis and...
The expression ‘historic moment’ is overused, but there is little doubt that we are living through one. It is always risky to predict the future, particularly given the number of recent surprises in both the political and sporting realms, but it seems highly likely that the summer of 2017 will go down as a key point in history, to go along with such events as the financial crisis of...
Everything has its price. Even those who think HS2 is a good idea must consider there is a point at which its cost makes the project unsustainable. Or do they? I only ask because Lord Berkeley, the chairman of the Railfreight Group and a long time supporter of the railways has, for some time, being trying to find out the latest estimate of the cost of the line. He...
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About Christian Wolmar
Christian Wolmar is an award winning writer and broadcaster specialising in transport and is the author of a series of books on railway history. In the autumn of 2012, he announced he is seeking the Labour candidacy for the 2016 London mayoral election. Read more >>.
• Fire and Steam, how the railways changed Britain at St Albans on Friday, September 29 2017
• Chairing railway conference, RSA insurance at London on Thursday, October 5 2017