30 December 2014
Last updated at 12:28
Network Rail chief executive Mark Carne has said he will not take his bonus, following recent major rail disruption.
Mr Carne was in line for a maximum bonus of £34,000, or around 5% of his £675,000 annual salary.
Overrunning Christmas engineering work led to the closure of London King’s Cross station on Saturday, causing chaos for thousands of people.
London Paddington was also temporarily shut after work did not finish on time. By Monday, normal service had resumed.
On Monday, Mr Carne told the BBC the maximum bonus he was likely to get in 2014/2015 would be 5% of his salary.
He refused to say whether he would be taking any bonus but on Tuesday told Sky News he would not be doing so.
Mr Carne said: “I am accountable for the railways and the performance (over Christmas) was not acceptable, so I have decided that I should not take my bonus this year.”
The work at King’s Cross is part of a Network Rail engineering programme running over the festive period
Manuel Cortes, leader of the TSSA rail union, said: “We welcome this decision by Mark Carne but, like many of his trains, it is running late – 72 hours late in this case.
“He should have announced it on Sunday when it became clear the level of chaos suffered by tens of thousands of passengers caught up in the King’s Cross shutdown.
“We hope his fellow executives will now follow suit and announce they will also be giving up their large bonuses as well.”
Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin has described Saturday’s overrun as “totally unacceptable”, while the Office of Rail Regulation and Network Rail (NR) have launched inquiries.
On Monday, shadow transport secretary Michael Dugher wrote to Mr Carne urging bonus restraint.
Mr Dugher tweeted on Tuesday: “Following my letter yesterday, welcome NR boss won’t take bonus. But time ministers acknowledged their responsibilities for rail chaos too.”
Given a good performance by Network Rail, Mr Carne would be entitled to a bonus of 20% of his annual salary, amounting to £135,000.
Mr Carne reduced the biggest possible bonus he could get from 160% to 20% when he joined Network Rail in January 2014.
He has apologised for the disruption over the weekend, saying Network Rail’s performance had fallen short.
Thousands of people were unable to travel after overrunning engineering work led to the closure of King’s Cross station on Saturday, while Finsbury Park station in north London – which was being used as a temporary terminal – had to be shut for a time due to overcrowding.