TfL appoints new chief operating officer

Transport for London (TfL) has announced Claire Mann, currently managing director of South Western Railway (SWR), has been appointed TfL’s chief operating officer

Transport for London (TfL) has announced Claire Mann, currently managing director of South Western Railway (SWR), has been appointed TfL’s chief operating officer.

Mann will be responsible for ensuring TfL's directly operated and contracted services and operations are planned and managed effectively to provide a safe, efficient, reliable and high-quality service to customers.

The role will see her lead the planning and delivery of services on the Tube, Elizabeth line, London Overground and Docklands Light Railway (DLR) as well the bus and tram networks, cable car and Santander Cycle Hire. 

She will also have responsibility for the management of TfL roads and road infrastructure, policing and security of the transport network and TfL's regulation of the taxi and private hire industry.

Mann, who has more than two decades of experience in the transport sector and has held a number of senior leadership roles in the rail industry, returns to TfL after three years at South Western Rail (SWR) – one of the UK’s largest train operating companies.

At SWR, she led a business with an annual turnover of £770m, comprised of 5,500 colleagues and running more than 1,500 train services a day from London’s busiest railway station, Waterloo. 

She adapted the business to a post-pandemic environment and steered SWR to becoming the first train operating company to launch a roadmap to net zero by 2040. 

She oversaw the introduction of a £1bn fleet of new trains, which are being rolled out across the SWR suburban network, including the construction of a state-of-the-art train care facility, and led the £26m modernisation of the Island Line on the Isle of Wight.

At TfL, she served as director of bus operations between 2017 and 2021, where she was responsible for the day-to-day delivery of the capital’s 9,200-strong bus fleet – Europe’s largest.

Her previous roles include director for DLR, operations and safety director at Arriva Trains Wales, general manager east at the former First Great Western (now GWR) and customer service director at London Overground.

Mann is a non-executive director on the Railway Safety Standards Board, a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (UK) and a board governor of the Chartered Institution of Railway Operators.

Glynn Barton, who has led TfL’s operations successfully on an interim basis since October 2022, will continue as chief operating officer until Mann joins TfL. 

He will then take on the role of director of buses, leading the development, planning and delivery of bus services across the capital. The current director of buses, Louise Cheeseman, retires on December 15.

Andy Lord, London's Transport Commissioner, said: "Claire is an outstanding transport professional with deep experience of improving customer service. 

“At a time when customer numbers continue to rise and we work to support London's post-pandemic recovery and attract new customers, Claire's customer focus and wide-ranging public transport industry background will play a vital role in our work. We are delighted to have her return to TfL in this key leadership position.

"I would also like to pay tribute to Glynn Barton, who has done a fantastic job of running our operations on an interim basis and who will now go on to run the largest bus network in Europe during a time that we are working to adapt our offering to further raise ridership and support growth in outer London.”

Mann added: “I’m delighted to be returning to TfL to lead its operations, which are key to the success of the London economy, at this important time. 

“I am passionate about delivering an excellent customer experience across all of TfL's varied and vital services and helping TfL and London to prosper. 

“I look forward to meeting and working with all of the colleagues who work so hard every day to provide Londoners and millions of visitors with the seamless and reliable services that London is renowned for around the world. 

“I would like to thank the incredible team at South Western Railway for all their support over the last three years and am proud of all we have achieved together.”

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