Network Rail chief executive eyes departure

 
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NETWORK Rail boss Sir David Higgins looks set to leave the company next year, to coincide with the group’s five-year funding cycle.

Sir David, who has been in the post since February 2011, has flagged up his looming departure within the firm to allow for a thorough search for his replacement, a company source said.

Network Rail’s current funding period ends in April 2014, and the firm is negotiating with the Office of Rail Regulation to finalise its budget for the next five years.

The company, a private entity backed by government funding, is responsible for Britain’s railway tracks, signals and stations.

Sir David, whose departure was first reported by Sky News, was criticised in May for taking a bonus of nearly £100,000 in a year when Network Rail missed its targets. Before his current role, Sir David was the head of the Olympic Delivery Authority.