ScotRail senior executives earning six figure salaries post-nationalisation

Six-figure pay packets for ScotRail executives have been published for the first time since the train operator was nationalised by the SNP in April.

Friday, 1st July 2022, 5:14 pm
Updated Friday, 1st July 2022, 5:43 pm

It comes after a difficult period for the railway, which has experienced significant disruption due to industrial action by the RMT and Aslef unions over pay and conditions.

Both unions suspended their actions after a 5 per cent pay rise was agreed, alongside a freeze on compulsory redundancies for the next five years.

Critics criticised the “bumper salaries” received by the executives at publicly-owned ScotRail.

Joanne Maguire, the chief operating officer at ScotRail, earns between £175,000 and £180,000. Interim finance director James Griffin is paid between £170,000 and £175,000, while safety, sustainability and asset director David Lister receives £150,000 to £155,000.

Service delivery director David Simpson, who complained in an email that ministers had not made the case for public ownership, earns £135,000 to £140,000, while commercial director Lesley Kane receives £130,000 to £135,000.

Mr Lister, Mr Simpson and Ms Kane all also receive a £7,500 car allowance.

Other executives such as interim communications director David Ross and interim HR director Marie-Therese Weighton are paid between £115,000 and £120,000, while Scottish Rail Holdings executives are also on more than £100,000.

ScotRail executive pay has been published.

Alex Hynes, joint managing director of ScotRail and Network Rail Scotland, earns up to £335,000, which is paid by Network Rail.

Scottish Labour’s transport spokesperson Neil Bibby slammed the pay packets.

He said: “It will come as a shock to the people of Scotland that in the midst of a cost-of-living and travel crisis, part-time officials at ScotRail are earning six figure sums.

“Frontline workers have been forced to take industrial action for a fair pay deal and all the while part-time executives have been given bumper salaries by the SNP.

“Many ordinary commuters don’t benefit from a car allowance when their train is cancelled, so it’s hard to see why this is also appropriate for ScotRail bosses.”

Scottish Liberal Democrat transport spokesperson Jill Reilly added: "These handsome figures illustrate the big pay cheques and large privileges executives at ScotRail have become accustomed to. It is shocking that even with these salaries, they have presided over weeks of train chaos, delays and strikes.

"Scottish Liberal Democrats will continue to press the Government on the issue of trains, so that we can finally meet our climate targets, create a sustainable Scotland and put the country back on track."

Chris Gibb, SRH chief executive and ScotRail chair, who earns £120,000, said: "The senior team across ScotRail and Scottish Rail Holdings do an important job in leading our 5,100-strong team as we recover from the pandemic.

"Pay needs to be set at fair market rates to attract and retain the best talent to do that job.

"We recognise that, as part of the public sector, we must ensure that pay is fair and provides value for taxpayers.

"We will continue to work with government to ensure this happens."

A Transport Scotland spokesman said: "This transparency is welcome and will be a key feature of how ScotRail will be run as a publicly-owned and controlled operator.

"Ministers have been assured that these salaries are commensurate with market rates for senior leaders at organisations on this size and scale."

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