The report shows the income, expenditure and government funding of the UK rail industry for the financial year 1 April 2021 to 31 March 2022.
The rail industry’s finances show signs of recovery from the effects of the pandemic, although passenger revenue remains well below pre-pandemic levels. With the easing of COVID-19 restrictions, passengers have been returning to the railways, and as a result government support to the industry reduced in the latest year.
The key findings include:
- The rail industry as a whole received £21.3 billion of income in the latest year (April 2021 to March 2022), through government funding (£13.3 billion), fares and other passenger income (£6.5 billion), and other sources (£1.5 billion).
- Fares income in the latest year was £5.8 billion. Adjusted for inflation, this is an increase of £3.9 billion from the previous year (April 2020 to March 2021), due to passengers returning to the railways. However, it is 46.6% lower than the £10.9 billion fares income generated two years ago (April 2019 to March 2020).
- Government funding of the rail industry was £13.3 billion, a drop of £4.3 billion (24.4%) from the previous year, as fares income was £3.9 billion higher. However, this support continues to be higher than the £6.8 billion provided in the year before the pandemic (April 2019 to March 2020).
- Industry costs, excluding financing costs, decreased by £0.2 billion to £20.0 billion.
- Investment in new and enhanced rail infrastructure and rolling stock increased to £7.6 billion, an increase of £1.8 billion. The majority of this was accounted for by the HS2 project, which rose by £1.6 billion.
Notes to editors
- Rail Industry Finance (UK) April 2021 to March 2022.
- All data tables, a quality and methodology report and an interactive tool associated with this release are published on the rail industry finance page of the ORR data portal.
- Rail industry finances summary April 2021 to March 2022 (figure 6).
- Total industry expenditure (including financing costs) was £22.8 billion, a £0.9 billion annual increase. This was due to Network Rail’s financing costs, which were £2.8 billion, a 57.8% increase, largely due to inflation on index linked debt.
- There was no significant industrial action during the year under review.
- To account for inflation, historic data has been adjusted to prices for the year April 2021 to March 2022, using the average quarter on quarter Consumer Price Index (CPI) for the year.