Christopher Bolt interviewed by Christopher Austin

Christopher A. Austin

Oral history interview with Christopher Bolt, conducted and recorded by Christopher Austin on 3 July 2018. Duration: 1 hr. 19 min. 43 sec. Early career; founding of Office of the Rail Regulator (ORR); regulation; privatisation model shortcomings; Railtrack shortcomings; franchising; roles of the Regulator; incentive models; Subsidies; political influence on ORR; John Swift (Rail Regulator); public sector collaboration; Strategic Rail Authority (SRA) shortcomings; ORR management structure; Chief Economist responsibilities; time as Interim Regulator; Tom Winsor; Informed Traveller project; Adviser to Transport Select Committee; Gwyneth Dunwoody (Member of Parliament); Railtrack collapse; Metronet collapse; Passenger Upgrade 2 (PUG 2); Network Rail; rebrand to Office of Rail Regulation (ORR); resolution of T-12 problem; effects of unexpected industry growth; rail freight problems; Network Rail asset management shortcomings; rail safety responsibilities; Greyrigg accident

One of over 150 oral history recordings made as part of the Britain’s Railways All Change (BRAC) archive project. BRAC was set-up to cover gaps in documenting the railway privatisation process in the United Kingdom, between 1994 and 1997, when the government-owned British Rail was dismantled into over 100 privately-owned companies. The interviews capture the recollections of people involved in the planning and implementation of the privatisation process, the management of change and running the railway during privatisation.


Oral Histories
Object Number:
oral history interview
Britain’s Railways All Change (BRAC) oral history archive, created in partnership with the Friends of the National Railway Museum, the Retired Railway Officers’ Society and the National Railway Museum.