Southeastern introduced ‘Delay Repay 15’ on September 11, reducing the threshold for claiming a refund from 30 to 15 min. ‘Nearly 90% of passenger journeys on franchises we manage are now covered by the scheme’, said Rail Minister Chris Heaton-Harris.

Network Rail is seeking to engage with suppliers as part of the process of updating its performance specifications for level crossing barrier machines. Its aim is to increase crossing reliability and allow new technologies to be considered.

RSSB is making £3·1m available to fund two or three ‘innovative demonstrator projects’ to support the implementation of Very Short Term Planning schedules in a robust and validated way and reduce the time required to manage the process. A competition launch event is to be held in London on October 1.

Currently Head of Engineering & Innovation at Reading Buses, John Bickerton is to join East West Rail in December as Head of Innovation.

RAIB is to publish a safety digest as a result of its preliminary examination of an incident on August 22 when a door on a train from London Liverpool Street to Southend Victoria was open in traffic for about 23 min while the train travelled 26 km at up to 128 km/h.

Network Rail has refurbished the small Tygwyn station during a three-week closure, replacing the platform edge, strengthening the riser wall, resurfacing the platform and and painting white lines. ‘Smaller and rural stations are just as important as larger stations’, said Bill Kelly, route director for Wales & the Borders. ‘For the communities they serve, they often act as a vital link for local residents to access the services and leisure opportunities that nearby towns offer’.

Network Rail and Transport for Wales have equipped a further 21 stations with public access defibrillators at a cost of more than £21 000, funded by the Department for Transport’s National Stations Improvement Programme.

Work to rebuild the sea wall at Dawlish restarted on September 9, after being suspended during the peak summer tourist season. The new wall to be completed in spring 2020 will be 2·5 m higher than the existing structure, with a curved edge to send waves back towards the sea and a wider promenade with seats offering clear views of the coast.

Greater Anglia launched a more frequent service from Meridian Water station in east London on September 9. Built by VolkerFitzpatrick as part of the Lee Valley Rail Programme, Meridian Water initially opened in June with a limited weekday peak time service.