Rail Legislator–keeping track of the Williams-Shapps Plan for Rail becoming law

Brought to you by Great Britain’s specialist public affairs agency for the rail sector – Cogitamus

Cogitamus is pleased to announce the launch of Rail Legislator – our dedicated smart monitoring, reporting and analysis service to help you follow the transition into law of recommendations from Keith Williams and Grant Shapps on reform of the structure, financing and branding of the railways in Great Britain.

We’ll help you to understand what these biggest changes to rail for a quarter of a century will mean for your organisation right now and in the years ahead.

What will Rail Legislator do for my organisation?

Starting with the publication of the Williams-Shapps Plan, Rail Legislator will track the consultation process on the UK Government’s White Paper and its early scrutiny by the House of Commons Transport Committee.  Later, we will follow the new Railways Bill from its introduction to the House of Commons, and keep you informed every step of the way up until its final approval by Parliament and Royal Assent.

Offering much more than just factual reporting, Rail Legislator’s smart monitoring approach will provide insights from our highly experienced consultants into the political motives behind modifications to the reform package and the Railways Bill, whether by the Government itself or at the insistence of MPs and Peers.   We will help you to identify opportunities for your organisation to contribute to the debate and shape the legislation so as to secure the best possible outcomes whether you represent passengers, freight customers, commercial organisations and suppliers, taxpayers, people who work in the industry, local government, the Devolved Administrations or other stakeholders. 

Subscribers to Rail Legislator will receive:

  • timely and clear reports emailed throughout the law making process;
  • access to a secure website containing all the relevant publications, reports and our analyses; and
  • exclusive access to podcasts where Cogitamus consultants and guest contributors will explore the implications of the legislation as it progresses.

How will the new railway legislation be created?

The stages we expect the Williams-Shapps recommendations to follow to become law can be seen in our diagram, which was reported in RAIL magazine.

Based on this expected process, our Rail Legislator service will include:

White Paper, consultation and Select Committee stages

Summary report and analysis of:

  • The Williams-Shapps Plan for Rail White Paper
  • Any consultation process including the published responses and results
  • House of Commons Transport Committee evidence sessions

Upon completion, a review and analysis of this stage

Railways Bill publication and House of Commons early stages

  • Summary report and analysis of the Railways Bill, in particular changes from the White Paper proposals
  • Summary report of:
    • The Second Reading debate in the House of Commons
    • The Public Bill Committee proceedings, including amendments made by the Government or MPs

Upon completion, a review and analysis of this stage

Report and Third Reading stage

  • Summary report of the parliamentary debates and the fate of any changes made in Committee

Upon completion, a review and analysis of this stage

House of Lords stages

  • Summary report of each stage of the process as the Bill is considered by the House of Lords including any proposed amendments from the Government or Peers

Upon completion, a review and analysis of any key changes accruing from this stage

Consideration of Lords’ Amendments

  • Any arguments between the two Houses of Parliament before the Bill receives Royal Assent and becomes an Act in law


  • Ongoing notifications and updates on:
    • Legislative and parliamentary timetable
    • Political intelligence 
    • Engagement opportunities 
  • Monitoring of:
    • Ministerial and departmental announcements linked to the legislation
    • Political party policies, positioning and statements
    • Impact on the Devolved Administrations and local authorities
  • Access to a secure website containing an archive of all relevant documents and publications, summary reports and monitoring information
  • Regular exclusive podcasts by our consultancy team and guest contributors exploring and analysing the latest developments and their implications 

How much does Rail Legislator cost?

Top quality political intelligence does not need to be provided at a ruinous cost, and we’re keen to make Rail Legislator available to SMEs (like us).

So, Cogitamus is offering Rail Legislator for a one-off subscription of £850 plus VAT.  To be clear, this will cover the entire progress of the legislation up to Royal Assent at least a year from now.  There will be no repeat payments.

We can even improve on that price if you take up our early bird offer and subscribe in the next 14 days.  In this case, the cost is £725 plus VAT.  The deadline for early bird subscriptions is 2359 hours on 4 June 2021.

To subscribe, follow our simple registration process to pay by card or request an invoice.

Each subscription will entitle the registered subscriber and two other users from the same organisation to access our content.

For subscribers to Rail Legislator, we will also offer preferential consultancy rates for assistance in the production of your own written evidence, articles and thought pieces for publications or social media, or the development and implementation of an engagement strategy to help in expressing your views to law makers.

Further information

If you wish to discuss how Cogitamus could help your organisation, please contact:

Mark Walker, Chief Executive via raillegislator@cogitamus.co.uk or by calling +44 (0)1733 767244

Subscribe to Rail Legislator now