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RailStaff Issue 189 / August 2013


Winner. Rail Team of the Year.

Maidment names Class 66

Paul Seller has returned to Lloyd’s Register Rail.


Class 800 Heads East. Hitachi Rail awarded a £1.2 billion order for Class 800 trains.


Railway Children founder, David Maidment OBE, was startled to find himself at the centre of a train naming ceremony at the National Track Plant Exhibition at Long Marston. The naming came as a complete surprise to David. Unsuspecting he pulled the curtain cord to reveal his own name. Pictured: Steve Featherstone, David and Stephen Haynes.

Continued on PAGE 4

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National Track Plant Exhibition report. The National Track Plant industry’s ‘Track Innovation Showcase’.


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HS2 has cleared what we hope is its last legal hurdle “The rail industry is successful because of the hundreds of examples of individual effort, professionalism and career commitment…”

acknowledging their skill, the wider industry has a deeper, better answer. People pull together on the railway. The rail industry is successful because of the hundreds of examples of individual effort, professionalism and career commitment.


Those who mourn should take comfort that this industry is a better place because of the service rendered by the departed. Their example will serve as our inspiration, their achievement only recognised in the final audit of our times.


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Dynamism and Confidence



Such is the sense of dynamism and confidence this year in the rail industry that it is hard not to see RailStaff this month as a ‘phewwhat-a-scorcher’ summer special. HS2 has cleared what we hope is its last legal hurdle. The National Track Plant Exhibition has been a huge success. Staff up and down the network are raising money for charity. New works continue driving forward a host of capacity enhancing initiatives. But for many this summer marks the passing of someone they love. The sun shines in vain on the mourner and bereaved. In these pages we remember two down to earth railway supporters, John Dennis and Colin Nash. Both enjoyed family life, a beer with friends on a summer’s evening and the prospect of talking about an industry they served with exemplary commitment. Their silence is hard to bear. Moreover, as autumn approaches many railway staff will retire taking with them irreplaceable knowledge. They can have the satisfaction of knowing their career marked the turn around and the expansion of an industry only recently written off as an economic basket case. The sum total of what the railway has achieved over the last few years is much greater than the sum of its parts. Analysts struggle to explain such arithmetic. Whilst


Plant & Equipment Focus In September’s RailStaff

Four square rail arithmetic

CIRAS: Fit for today, ready for tomorrow

RailStaff reports in detail on the the latest developments in plant and equipment that were on display at the National Track Plant Exhibition, held at Long Marston in July. If you want to contribute, get in touch now. Please contact Paul Curtis or Tom O’Connor on 01530 560026.

Rail operators are generating more than four times as much money for government to reinvest in rail than 15 years earlier.

Paul Russell is looking at some radical changes that would transform the way CIRAS is funded and operates.


Railway Children founder in Train Name Surprise when David Maidment OBE was approached to help unveil a name plate on a Colas Rail Class 66 loco he stepped up to the plate without a second thought. The Railway Children charity is keenly supported by railway staff up and down the network and David, who founded the charity, has proved a busy ambassador for the cause. David was visiting the National Track Plant Exhibition at Long Marston where the 219 exhibitors and 3,700 visitors raised £8,750 for the charity. Says David Maidment, ‘The naming was a complete surprise. Initially I was unaware that an engine was to be named, then when asked to perform the ceremony, I assumed the locomotive was to receive the name ‘Railway Children’ and I was speechless - well nearly when I unveiled my own name on the side of the Colas Rail heavy freight engine.’ Organised by Network Rail and supported by the Rail Alliance and the rail engineer magazine, the National Track Plant Exhibition brought together suppliers of plant and equipment and leading decision makers, engineers and contractors from the rail industry. People were able to watch demonstrations of rail mounted equipment on the rail connected site and compare notes in an informal atmosphere. The whole event reflected the continuing rise in rail industry confidence. Many of the visitors had long supported the Railway Children taking part in various network-wide fund raising activities. Says Steve Featherstone of Network Rail, who organised the event, ‘A few weeks ago I did the


Three Peaks Challenge by Rail on behalf of Railway Children. This gave me an opportunity to understand some of the great work the charity does. Much of that work is a result of the vision and passion David has shown since founding the charity in 1995. ‘Stephen Haynes, (Managing Director, Rail Services, Colas Rail) had provided engines as logistical support for the show and he asked did we know anyone deserving of an engine naming. It was a pleasure to invite David to unveil the nameplate and recognise the outstanding contribution that he has made to Railway Children and to the wider railway industry.’

Connecting people David Maidment set up Railway Children in 1996, following an encounter with a young girl begging on a railway station in India. For the past 18 years, he has dedicated his life to raising awareness of the plight of children living alone and at risk on the streets and railway platforms. Adds Tom O’Connor of the Rail Media Group which supported the event, ‘The train naming capped a relaxed and hugely beneficial two days. Communication is the central purpose of the railway. ‘Every day rail helps men, women and children communicate by connecting people with their homes, businesses, schools and places of work in comfort and safety. Passengers are looked after as much by track side staff, engineers and fitters as by train crew and station staff. ‘It is a face-to-face, people intensive, industry. Helping people in the industry itself to communicate and better progress new plant, technologies and ideas is essential if we are to continue to grow the railway.

“I was speechless well nearly - when I unveiled my own name…” DAvID MAIDMENT, THE RAILwAy CHILDREN

‘All of us at Rail Media are committed to helping the industry communicate with confidence and precision. It is fitting that our support for the little people so less fortunate than ourselves should have been reflected in the train naming by David Maidment - an exemplar of the compassionate, can-do and practical qualities of the rail industry. Long may the work of the Railway Children continue. ‘Long Marston was a camera shot of the industry at its best. Many thanks to Network Rail’s Steve Featherstone and his team and all who supported the National Track Plant Exhibition, which was a resounding success.’ Andrew Robbins reports on the National Track Plant Exhibition in this issue.


Class 800 Heads East The Intercity Express Programme has made further progress this summer as Patrick McLoughlin confirmed a £1.2 billion order for a fleet of Class 800 trains for the East Coast main line. The 270 carriages will be assembled at Hitachi Rail Europe’s new purpose-built factory in Newton Aycliffe, County Durham. The fleet forms the first part of an overall £5.8 billion Intercity Express Programme. The class 800 series will be operational on the East Coast Main Line from 2019. Says Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin, ‘By signing this deal we have provided further proof of our determination to transform Britain’s railways into a world-class operation through continued investment and state-of-the-art technology. ‘This new order for class 800 series trains is part of the Government’s commitment to invest in our nation’s infrastructure.

This will not only deliver significant benefits to passengers by further slashing journey times and bolstering capacity, but will also stimulate economic growth through improved connectivity between some of Britain’s biggest cities. This is good news for rail passengers and for British manufacturing.’ The rail plant in County Durham will be operational from 2015. Says Alistair Dormer, Chief Executive Officer, Hitachi Rail Europe, ‘This follow-on order by the Department for Transport is great news for passengers on the East Coast Main Line who can look forward to quicker journeys travelling on highquality trains, with more seats and passenger space, built to the latest safety standards. ‘This order is a tremendous boost for Hitachi Rail Europe’s new factory with its 730 future employees in County Durham and for the British supply chain. This order extends firm orders at the factory until the

end of the decade with significant capacity remaining available for further UK and export contracts actively being pursued.’ Last year the DfT agreed an initial order for 596 carriages with Agility Trains, a consortium of Hitachi and John Laing. As well as building at Newton Aycliffe, Hitachi is also planning to construct maintenance depots in Bristol, Swansea, west London and Doncaster, and will upgrade existing maintenance depots throughout Britain to service the class 800 series trains. The first batch of class 800 series trains will enter revenue-earning service on the Great Western Main

Line in 2017 and on the East Coast Main Line in 2018. The full train fleet will comprise 122 complete train sets, some five-vehicles long and others nine-vehicles long. A class 800 series train has a higher seating capacity than existing units in its class. A 9-car train will have wider aisles and 131 more seats than the equivalent Intercity 125 High Speed Train (HST) and 188 more seats than a comparable offthe-shelf new 9-car train, with no compromise on leg-room. For an equivalent 200m train, the class 800 series train provides over 30% more seated capacity than an existing diesel Intercity 125 (HST).

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Four square rail arithmetic

modest, most recently on average around 3% of turnover. The key factor driving the £3.2 billion increase in passenger revenue has been the phenomenal rise in passenger journeys. 96% of the increase in revenue has come from passenger journey growth, as opposed to 4% from fare changes. The report has the backing of the Rail Delivery Group. Says Tim O’Toole, CEO of FirstGroup plc and Rail Delivery Group Chairman, ‘By working in partnership with Government,


Network Rail and the rest of t he fro incre of the m pa ase i as sseng n rev e opp er industry, jou nue os far ed to rney has c ec o franchised han 4% fr grow me ges om th, train companies will continue to strive for a bigger and better railway. This is not simply because encouraging more people to travel by rail is good for our business, but because it is vital for the future of the economy and the country.’

operators have increased the money they generate for Government to reinvest from £400 million in 1997-98 to £1.7 billion in 2011-12. This money is helping to reduce public subsidies and sustain the biggest investment programme seen in railways in decades. At the same time, the operating margins of train companies have remained

Provencal Bonus

Bob Crow calls for new political party


Rail operators are generating more than four times as much money for Government to reinvest in rail than 15 years earlier, according to a report, ‘Growth and Prosperity,’ published by ATOC. The startling report is based on data analysed and collated by KPMG. By significantly growing passenger revenue while containing costs, wily train

Eurostar sales revenues powered up 7% during the first half of 2013. Passenger numbers continue to increase with more than 200 extra services laid on to help meet demand over the summer period. The new service to Provence has proved a great success with many trains running at full capacity.

Speaking at the Durham Miners Gala, RMT General Secretary Bob Crow called for the launch of a new political party to better advance the interests of workers. In a statement Mr Crow urged the trade union movement to support the creation of a new party to challenge head on the pro-business, anti-worker agenda of the three main political parties, Tory, Labour and Liberals.



Says Bob, ‘We have seen Ed Miliband dancing to the tune of Tony Blair and the rest of the New Labour conspirators as he seeks to hack away at the last remaining shreds of influence held by those who created the Party that he leads, the trade unions. ‘If others want to stick around and be insulted by those whose only interest is our money and not 6

our ideas then that’s a matter for them, for the rest, there is a whole world of opportunity outside the constraints of the Labour Party and RMT would urge them to embrace it and join us in this new political project.’

Freedom He continued, ‘RMT was expelled from the Labour Party almost a decade ago and in that time we have actually increased our political influence as we have had the freedom to back candidates and parties who demonstrate clear support for this trade union and its policies. ‘If others now join us after the contempt that they have been shown by Ed Miliband, then together we have a world to win. This is a moment of huge opportunity for all those sick and tired of Labour’s embrace of pro-

business, pro-EU, neo-liberal policies and we should seize it with both hands.’ The Durham Miners’ Association organised the first Gala in 1871 in Wharton Park, Durham. It developed into the largest unofficial miners and trade union gathering in the United Kingdom. At its peak the Gala attracted over 300,000 people. Banners would be brought on foot from collieries all over the north east.

Clean sweep for John Dooley A former BR carriage cleaner has capped a 30 year career on the railways by being promoted onboard operations manager First Hull Trains. After a long career working mainly as a train manager, union representative, standards manager and station manager, John Dooley has now taken up the post at the company’s headquarters in Europa House in Hull. John started his working life as a carriage cleaner with British Rail in 1983 at Heaton Carriage Sidings in Newcastle when he was just 17. ‘My dad worked on the buses and my mum was a clippy so transport of some kind was always going to be something I went into it seems,’ says John. ‘I saw an advert for a job at British Rail in school and was taken with the idea. I absolutely loved my first day of work experience and as they say, the rest is history.’ Mr Dooley progressed through

different jobs, eventually becoming a passenger guard working out of Newcastle before taking on the same role but based at Hull, where he has spent the majority of his career since. However he did have a five-year hiatus from Hull when he lived in Brighton and worked in London King’s Cross as First Hull Trains station supervisor. ‘Being a railwayman is something which stays with you for life. My friends are railwaymen, you can stand in a pub in any part of the country and if you meet someone else who has worked on the railways there is an immediate bond, a shared interest and understanding,’ says John. ‘I’m really pleased to have been able to work my career in the industry and I have been happy ever since I joined First Hull Trains after what will be 10-years now. I used to love listening to the old tales when I grew up with the older generations of railwaymen

and women and I suppose now I am one of the elder statesmen – it’s me saying ‘I remember when’ now but I see the same enthusiasm in some of the younger staff members as I recall having myself. It’s an industry I have always loved and one I always will.’ After rail privatisation, John worked within numerous franchise businesses, including Arriva and

Northern Spirit, as a guard. Says Keith Doughty, First Hull Trains’ service delivery director, ‘John is an asset to the business, he is an asset to the city and he is a great man to have around the place. He understands what we are trying to deliver and works hard to get everyone working towards the same goals. I think he is a great appointment and I am sure he will do a fantastic job.’

Carmody heads safety at Spencer Group

Erwin joins RvEL

Lee Carmody has been appointed group health and safety manager at engineering and rail infrastructure company, Spencer Group. The promotion comes following Carmody’s initial three month period with the business as a risk advisor. Lee has 20 years’ experience of the rail and civil engineering industries. He has been appointed to co-ordinate best practice across the business. ‘Spencer Group has a reputation for striving for excellence in everything it does. There are no half measures and I am very pleased to have been appointed to this role,’ says Lee. ‘Almost on a weekly basis, Spencer Group becomes bigger and stronger. My role is about taking the excellent work which is being done in different areas of the business and embedding it across everything we do. ‘There can be no corners cut when it comes to health and safety in the industries which Spencer operates in and I am confident in saying that it is the number one key performance indicator for the business already. In the coming weeks I will be reinforcing the message that everyone within the business must get behind what we are trying to achieve.’ Lee Carmody started his career working for British Rail, later gaining experience in rail maintenance and renewals for infrastructure companies. Most recently he worked for Hewlett Construction Group and before

Railway vehicle Engineering Limited has appointed Pete Erwin as Professional Head of Engineering and a nonexecutive director. Erwin began his career in the early 1970s as an apprentice at Derby Carriage Works, moving on to BR’s Research division, and prior to rail privatisation Interfleet Technology. Most recently he has worked as Head of Fleet at Network Rail’s National Delivery Service. Starting in July, Pete will take the lead in developing RVEL’s engineering standards and policies as well as acting as the public face of the business. Says Andy Lynch, Managing Director of RVEL, ‘I am delighted that Pete has chosen to join RVEL. He brings a wealth of engineering experience and practical problem solving skills which will help the business to continue its focus on meeting the needs of our growing customer base.’


that GrantRail Ltd. Often acting as the point of contact for day-to-day advice and assistance, Mr Carmody has a prodigious track record in championing safety improvement. He has extensive experience in accident and incident investigations. Mr Carmody is a member of the International Institute of Risk and Safety Management (IIRSM), the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health and the Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment.


Cross London Trains team appointed

Higgins to head Construction Council

Cross London Trains, XLT, the organisation set up to purchase Desiro City trains from Siemens and to lease them to the Thameslink franchise, has made two senior appointments following the recent contract award for 1,140 new rail carriages. Andy Pitt has joined XLT as Executive Chairman. Pitt is currently a non-executive director of Transport Catapult Systems Limited. He has previously worked as managing director of South Western Trains Limited and was rail business development director for Stagecoach Group plc. He is a former member of the ATOC board. Pitt organised the £1 billion procurement of SWT’s Desiro fleet. Charles Doyle will join Cross London Trains as Managing Director from Transport for London where he has

Sir David Higgins has been named co-chair of the new Construction Leadership Council together with business secretary vince Cable. The Council will oversee efforts to implement the recommendations of the Construction 2025 strategy document. The Construction Leadership Council is the latest in a long line of attempts over the years to provide an effective pan-industry forum for working with government, dating back at least to the National Economic Development Council, whose construction committee finally withered on the vine in the early 1990s, to be replaced by the Construction Industry Council. The Construction 2025 document sets out four measurable objectives to be achieved by 2025. These are:

spent the last seven years in various financial positions, most recently as a Principal of Commercial Finance. In his time at TfL Charles was involved in a number of rolling stock and infrastructure PFIs and procurement programmes. Before TfL, Charles ran his own transport business, and spent 11 years as a Corporate Financier in the City for JP Morgan and Robert Fleming. XLT’s shareholders are 3i Infrastructure plc, Innisfree PFI Secondary Fund 2 LP and Project Ventures Rail Investments Limited, a Siemens Project Ventures group company.

“XLT was set up to purchase Desiro City trains from Siemens…”

• a 33% reduction in both the ini-

Maroudas moves to Eversholt Rail Fred Maroudas is the new Chief Financial Officer at Eversholt Rail. Fred succeeds Simon Purves and will join the business on 2nd September. Mr Maroudas had previously worked as Finance Director for Heathrow Airport. Fred is Deputy Chairman of Local Partnerships, the joint venture between the Local Government Association and HM Treasury, and is a Director of the UK Green Investment Bank. He has a BA (Hons) degree in History and is a

qualified solicitor. Mary Kenny, Chief Executive Officer of Eversholt Rail, said, ‘We are looking forward to welcoming Fred to Eversholt Rail and working with him and our recently appointed Chief Operating Officer, Andy Course, on the strategy to take the business forward.’ Maroudas serves as a director of the Railways Pension Trustee Company Limited. He served as a Director of Heathrow Finance plc from July 31, 2009 to October 08, 2012. He

served as a Director of Heathrow (SP) Limited (formerly BAA (SP) Limited) from July 31, 2009 to October 8, 2012. He was responsible for financing at HM Treasury Taskforce and Partnerships UK. He served as a Director at Network Rail Infrastructure Finance Plc.

tial cost of construction and the whole-life cost of assets • a 50% reduction in the overall time from inception to completion for new build and refurbished assets • a 50% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions in the built environment • a 50% reduction in the trade gap between total exports and total imports for construction products and materials. The rail industry’s pioneering work on reducing costs on major projects and ensuring they come in on budget and on time will be valued by the council. Andrew Wolstenholme of Crossrail is also on the council. Sir David is continuing as chief executive of Network Rail.

Charlie goes ahead Charlie Hodgson has been appointed Managing Director - Rail Development at Go-Ahead. He succeeds Alex Hynes. Hodgson joined Go-Ahead group in April 2012 as Director Business Analysis responsible for rail strategy and overseeing rail franchise bids at Go-Ahead. Before that he was at KPMG for nearly five years where he supported Govia on its winning South Central franchise bid in 2009. Further rail experience includes a three year stint at the DfT as franchise sponsor and before that a 12 month spell at the Strategic Rail Authority as an economist. Charlie read Economics at Manchester University. Says David Brown, Group Chief Executive of GoAhead, ‘Charlie’s experience and expertise will be invaluable over the coming months as we work to secure new business including DLR, Thameslink and Crossrail. I am pleased that the depth and experience within our Rail Development team means we can promote an internal candidate.’


Mixed Doubles for kemble

Making sure public money in railways continues to be well spent, Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne, visited railway staff hard at work doubling the kemble – Swindon line in July. This summer between 9th August and 2nd September, mixed teams of over 600 people will be


out in force to reposition six miles of existing track. Signalling and telecoms equipment along the line will also be moved in order to make room for the installation of 12-miles of additional track. The chancellor enjoyed meeting staff and reaffirmed the Coalition Government’s backing for rail. ‘It’s

great to see this work underway, delivering a scheme that will improve connectivity and boost the economy in Swindon and the broader south-west. I hugely enjoyed meeting those working on the scheme,’ said George Osborne. ‘We need to invest in the longterm infrastructure that will equip our country to compete in the global race over the coming decades. That’s why we’re upgrading the Swindon to Kemble line, part of the largest investment in our railways since Victorian times and spending more than £300 billion on infrastructure over the next Parliament.’ The Beeching closures continue to be rolled back. Says Patrick Hallgate, route managing director for Network Rail Western, ‘We are entering a very exciting phase of the project as we will be restoring this stretch of railway to what it was before Beeching. ‘The investment on Swindon to

Kemble railway is vital to meet growth and to secure a rail future for passengers. In addition, good rail links stimulate private sector investment and enable sustained productivity. The railway gives more than it takes and by investing in schemes like the redoubling of Swindon to Kemble, we are also investing in the future of Britain.’ Once the scheme is completed in 2014, the railway between Swindon, Stroud and Gloucester will be capable of running more trains and providing a better service. First Great Western can’t wait. Says Mark Hopwood, FGW managing director, ‘We have been talking to our customers about these improvements for some time and we are grateful to them for their feedback and help in realising this project. This upgrade is vitally important to improve our customers’ travel experiences for the future.’


Technology, Design, Maintenance - RvE2013 Thursday, October 3rd sees the return of the Rail vehicle Enhancements Show to Pride Park, Derby. The free to attend show, organised by Kevin Lane from Onyxrail invites rolling stock engineering consultancies, leasing companies and train operating companies to meet with experts from leading companies including, Brentto Industry, Creactive Design, DC Airco, Icomera, Infodev, Televic, and many others to discuss how their products, services or designs can help improve current rolling stock assets. Following on from RVE 2012 held in London and Derby, RVE2013 will feature more companies bringing their products and services right into the heart of the rail industry in Derby.

Technology Kevin Lane, show organiser commented “Technology such as passengers seeing how full each

carriage of an approaching train is on their phone, sending texts or RSS based bulletins directly to information screens on the train, providing location based advertising or advising drivers of the optimal speed to improve punctuality and minimise energy usage all sounds futuristic but all of these technologies are available today and can be installed retrospectively to existing rail assets. Uplifts are driven by the need to be innovative in the franchise bidding process, or to look more deeply into how assets can remain not only leasable but of increased value to operators whilst delivering real benefits to the passenger or the operator.”

Design Passengers want a good travelling experience, to be well informed and to travel in cool carriages. They also expect value for money within the ticket price. These demands

provide challenges to operators balancing service and cost.

Maintenance The need to keep rolling stock in continued service means that investment in rolling stock assets is essential to ensure that they are up to date, meet passenger expectation and are sought after by train operators. These initiatives make it all the more timely to take the opportunity to overlay maintenance and refurbishment with vehicle enhancement programmes. The event for 2013 is being supported by the rail engineer, RailStaff and The Rail Alliance and will be bigger, broader and better

than RVE2012. There are a few exhibitor spaces left if you would like to exhibit. Attendees to this free event can be assured of a rewarding visit so put RVE Derby on 3rd of October in your diary. Register for free online now at


Sun blockade

Major improvement work on the railway between warrington and Preston was successfully completed after nine consecutive days of intensive engineering. Four life-expired junctions were replaced and three miles of track re-laid boosting line speeds and guaranteeing reliability. According to a spokesman, hard working staff consumed 900 barrels of water and slathered on 3,000 bottles of sun cream used as track temperatures rose as high as 46C. The nine day project pushed ahead through

virgin Trains’ Pendolino fleet has been upgraded and overhauled. In a special thank you event at Alstom’s Longsight Traincare Centre in Manchester the Longsight team were joined by senior management from both Alstom and Virgin Trains to mark the end of the £60m process. Says Mike Hulme, Vice President Train Life Services UK & Ireland for Alstom, ‘There’s been a real buzz every time I’ve been on site and I’m very proud to have been part of the organisation that delivered these two very complex programmes.’ The last of the H3 Pendolinos – 390002 – is now back in service, having been turned around by the team at Longsight in just over a fortnight. ‘The H3 programme was already pretty complicated and then we decided to make it even more complex by also carrying out the integration of two extra cars,’ says Mike Hulme. The Pendolino fleet has been in service for more than 10 years and has completed an additional 2.5 million miles of reliable service 12

one of the hottest weeks of the year. Says Martin Frobisher, area director Network Rail, ‘I was in the cab of the first test train over the line this morning and I’m pleased that under some tough weather conditions we’ve been able to deliver on time, this vital improvement which will make journeys on the west coast main line more reliable and punctual. ‘I would like to thank passengers for their support and cooperation during the closure, as well as our industry partners who we worked very closely with to prepare for and deliver this critical project.’ Usually, Network Rail would have carried out work of this kind over a number of bank holiday weekends requiring train services to be replaced repeatedly by alternative transport. By carrying out the work in a nine-day continuous spell this summer, engineers were able to complete the replacement of four junctions around 16 months earlier to avoid disrupting rail travel plans for many weekends and nine bank holidays over the next two years. ‘I congratulate the engineering team at Network Rail for completing this very challenging piece of work on time. A key section of the West Coast Main Line will now immediately provide better reliability for our customers and in the longer term is another stepping stone in our quest for faster journey times for Anglo Scottish services,’ says Phil Bearpark, Production Director Virgin Trains.

welsh whistle A Ffestiniog & welsh Highland Railway locomotive has been fitted with the whistle from Mallard’s 1935 sister locomotive, Silver king, to mark the record breaking 75th anniversary run of the A4 Pacific Mallard. One of LNER’s best-known drivers, Bill Hoole, drove Gresley’s A4 Pacifics regularly between London and Scotland. Hoole moved to Porthmadog to become a driver on the Ffestiniog Railway when he left King’s Cross shed. He was given the engraved chime whistle on his retirement in 1959. Last year it was presented to the F&WHR by Hoole’s grandson, Bill Poacher. Red Garratt NG/G16 No. 138, built in Manchester in 1958, now carries the whistle. In 1959, another A4, Sir Nigel Gresley, driven by Bill Hoole, set the post-war speed record of 112 mph, also on Stoke Bank. He was later unofficially reported as having driven the same loco at 117 mph. Hoole drove on the FR from 1959 until his death in 1979 and is buried in Minffordd Cemetery. His gravestone reads Bill Hoole: Engineman Extraordinary.

Staff Buzz praised

since the H2 overhaul. In addition to the overhaul work, the Longsight team extended 31 of the nine-car trains to 11 cars at the same time. Says Tim Bentley, Managing Director of Alstom’s West Coast Main Line activities, ‘We’re delighted to reach the successful conclusion to a hugely complex and challenging activity.’ He praised the combination of engineering capability across the group and the local expertise of

staff at Manchester. Chris Gibbs, Chief Operating Officer at Virgin Trains, was equally delighted with the overhaul. ‘I know there’s a huge amount of work that goes into it – you’ve done your jobs very well. On behalf of not just our staff but also our customers, I’d like to say thank you for doing a top quality job.’ Top performing staff at Longsight also completed the overhaul of Northern Rail’s 17-strong Class 323 regional fleet this month.

“We’re delighted to reach the successful conclusion to a hugely complex and challenging activity….” TIM BENTLEy, MANAGING DIRECTOR OF ALSTOM’S wEST COAST MAIN LINE ACTIvITIES


The DfT has approved Transport for London plans to take over commuter services that run from Liverpool Street to Enfield Town, Cheshunt via Seven Sisters and Chingford. This Includes 25 stations. TfL will become responsible for 23, while two larger stations, Liverpool Street and Cheshunt, will remain the responsibility of Network Rail and Greater Anglia. Says Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, ‘You only have to look at the success of London Overground to see how TfL taking over this commuter service will transform the journey for passengers. It will also open up the North-East of London and drive jobs and growth in Tottenham and beyond.’ TfL promises better reliability and smarter, cleaner, stations. No date has been fixed for the transfer, although TfL hopes that it will be during 2015. As with London Overground, TfL will

A pair for all seasons Two rail staff who met at work have married. Wendy Coleman is a systems and compliance manager at Virgin Trains. Andy Garrett is a catering and logistics manager also at Virgin. The pair have been together for ten years. Systems and logistics finally fell smoothly into place at a sumptuous wedding.


Transport for London to take over commuter services

appoint a private sector operator to run these services on its behalf. Says TfL’s Managing Director for London Rail Mike Brown, ‘We are pleased that the Department for Transport has agreed to devolve rail services to TfL so that we can make improvements for the

thousands of passengers using Liverpool Street to Enfield Town, Cheshunt via Seven Sisters, and Chingford services. We will make these services more reliable, upgrade facilities at 23 stations along the routes and ensure we are fully accountable to our

Saved on the 4th July

passengers. ‘There is much work to be done to ensure a transition of responsibilities in 2015 and also to establish a close working relationship with Greater Anglia so that where we share tracks, we are able to operate efficiently.’

Independence Day celebrations almost came to a premature end for one wheelchair user on the washington D.C. subway system. The disabled man lost control of his electrified wheelchair and powered over the edge of the platform onto the railway tracks. However an off duty soldier, Michael Menchaca, saw what had happened and jumped down onto the tracks. The subway system in Washington has third rail electrification. Menacha was able to undo the man’s seat belt and with the help of another passer by lifted the man to safety. The rescue was brought off as staff watched the incident on CCTV and rushed to stop trains on the line. ‘I was just doing the right thing pretty much like anyone would have done,’ Army Specialist Michael Menchaca told WJLA News.


vital training for Tresham rail apprentices

Trainer Sean Whittaker (left), Lawrence Dobie (right) and Rachel Kay (second from right) with Vital apprentices at Tresham College.

vital Skills Training, part of vital Services Group, is celebrating the launch of its Level 3 Rail Engineering partnership with Tresham College of Further and Higher Education, kettering, after the first 16 learners commenced training.

The group is the first to undertake the NVQ Level 3, which combines practical training as well as classroom-based tuition. Both organisations are members of the National Skills Academy in Rail Engineering (NSARE) and this is the first time that Tresham

College has been able to deliver specific NVQ Level 3 courses in Rail Engineering to meet the needs of a growing region. The apprentices, who are aged between 16 and 18 years old, started their courses on Monday 29 July 2013 and will regularly visit Vital’s base at the Greenacres Centre in Mowmacre Hill to undertake practical training on the Great Central Railway. The Level 3 qualification will be the skill level required on the Midland mainline, which runs through the area. The group was welcomed on site by Vital’s education and training director Lawrence Dobie. He said: “We are delighted that the first Level 3 apprentices have started on the programme. “The course will provide the learners with the skills, knowledge and experience they need to be

competent rail engineers and we are so pleased to be working together with Tresham College to offer something which we believe to be unrivalled in the region.” Rachel Kay, Tresham College’s Managing Director and Deputy Principal, added: “This is an ideal partnership for all concerned. Both parties are committed to providing opportunities for people from all backgrounds and giving them the support they need to achieve their career goals. “This new programme gives our students a chance not just to earn while they learn, but also to enter a vibrant industry where there is a huge demand for suitably qualified staff. We’re confident that this will be a long and successful partnership that will offer young people an exciting and viable career path.” To find out more about apprenticeships at Tresham visit or visit or call 0161 836 7024.

The rail industry is stepping up efforts to attract young people to the cause this summer with a special course at Bath University. Says Gil Howarth, Chief Executive of NSARE, ‘We are delighted to be working with The Smallpeice Trust and LRF to raise awareness of the exciting career opportunities railway engineering can offer young people.’ Over 100 potential teenage engineers attended the three day taster course at Bath University. Organised by the National Skills Academy for Railway Engineering and the Lloyd’s Register Foundation the course explored the design, construction and operation of railways. The 13-14 year olds looked at railway engineering through a series of presentations and practical exercises. Working in teams, they tackled real-life challenges on projects designed and facilitated by young engineers from industry. The companies taking part were Babcock Rail, FirstGroup plc, Network Rail and Transport for London. Projects included designing and building: a railway track complete with bends, bridges and tunnels and an operational signalling system. 14


Early bath for engineers

Says Eileen Kinghan, Director of Grants at LRF, ‘For a third year, LRF agreed to support Smallpeice’s railway engineering Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) Days and a residential course. The Smallpeice initiatives give young people an understanding of the skills they need to develop to equip them for the new and increasing opportunities that we are seeing in this fast-moving sector.’ The LRF and NSARE are also sponsoring an advanced Railway Systems Engineering course for 15 to 17 year olds this summer which will take place at the University of Birmingham.

Says Dr Andrew Cave, Chief Executive of the Smallpeice Trust, ‘We are most grateful for the continuing support from NSARE and LRF on this programme. Rail is one of the greenest forms of transport and massive investment is being injected into our railway infrastructure. ‘Giving young people the opportunity to discover for themselves the excitement, challenge and reward of a career in railway engineering is vital in encouraging the engineers of tomorrow while equipping them to meet the social, environmental and economic challenges of the future.’

TRAINING... sponsored CAREERS by vital Skills Training


By Lawrence Dobie, Education and Training Director at vital Services Group.

Twelve months ago when we began contributing to this magazine, we found ourselves looking positively towards the future of the rail industry, excited about the prospect of training opportunities that would deliver on the many large scale projects in the pipeline. Now, a year on, and just a few months away from the start of Control Period 5 (CP5), it feels like a good opportunity to take stock of where the industry stands. During 2012, major changes to the training review process saw the previous Achilles audit replaced with NSARE’s

accreditation scheme. Initially viewed as a controversial regime, the change from what was essentially a tick box exercise to a renewed focus on quality of the learner experience, has really changed things for the better.

A positive move This was evidenced in the first round of inspections which recognised six providers as outstanding. Out of those reinspected in round two, a number of other organisations have improved their grades from good to outstanding - a positive move for the industry. Whilst this is a positive outcome, there is still some way to go, especially as David Cameron has labelled the significant railway upgrades to begin in 2014 as the

‘biggest modernisation of our railways since the Victorian era.’ It is concerning that NSARE has identified that only 17% of the engineering workforce has qualifications at higher academic levels (above A-Level). This highlights the major gap in skills and is something that will continue to increase unless radical action is taken.

Strategic relationships As we all know the nature of the rail industry is that large-scale, capital investment projects can take decades to plan and implement and I welcome the Railway Technical Strategy’s recommendation that we should be developing strategic relationships to learn best practice from other industries so that we

can minimise the risk in adopting new skill sets. In recognition of this, employers are beginning to demand better quality training and facilities for their employees. An example of this was in a tender we recently received which requested evidence of how we brief our trainers and assessors, how we monitor and evaluate their performance and the scope and location of our training facilities. It’s promising to see that across the industry, employers, training providers, suppliers and support organisations such as NSARE, are all working together towards the same end goal of developing a skilled, quality workforce that is equipped to deliver on the many exciting opportunities that lie ahead of us.

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All change at Nottingham

Hot news

Barry Donovan, Maria Donovan and David Melbourne from Nottingham City Council are joining the railway this summer to act as ambassadors at the station. An extensive £100m project will see Nottingham re-signalled, six miles of track re-laid and three junctions replaced. Two level crossings will be replaced with footbridges. Three signal boxes and Trent power signal box are closing and their functions transferred to

with the hot spell baking the capital, TfL is advising passengers to carry water, not to travel if unwell and to take care what you wear. New air conditioned trains, which have been running on the Metropolitan line for the last couple of years, are now being put into service on the Hammersmith & City line. Later this summer the Circle line will have air conditioned trains. Meanwhile two of London’s busiest Tube stations, Green Park and Oxford Circus are benefitting from the station cooling systems that were installed last year, which reduce temperatures at platform level. Other work to improve ventilation shafts, restore out of service fan systems and portable fans will also be helping cool passengers this summer. However

Derby signalling centre. Nottingham station will be refurbished and a new platform added. The ambassadors will be joining railway staff at the station to advise passengers. Trent Power Signal Box bowed out after 44 years of service on Friday 19 July. Train 5D05, an empty stock movement from Eastcroft depot to Derby, was the final service signalled out by the box that evening just before 11pm.

Park’n’Pedal Drawing on its Dutch heritage, Greater Anglia has built a bicycle centre at Chelmsford station. The new CyclePoint combines secure cycle parking with cyclehire and maintenance facilities in a single location. Such centres are a common sight in Holland. Local MP for Chelmsford and transport minister, Simon Burns MP, joined Ruud Haket, managing director of Greater Anglia to open the first of the new CyclePoints. Greater Anglia is planning other CyclePoints at Cambridge, Colchester, Ely, Ipswich and Norwich stations. The Day’s Yard site between the station and the car park has space for 1,000 cycles.

Passengers who may have moaned at the opening musical jingle before public service announcements at Glasgow Central are rejoicing at the station’s new status as a live music venue this summer. Every Friday evening at five o’clock, live bands play on the main concourse. The scheme lasts until September. The ‘Virgin Trains presents… Live at Central’ idea proved a hit during the Glasgow International Jazz Festival last June. Now an extended programme of events has been put together throughout the summer. The Live at Central concerts are part of a cunning plan by staff at Network Rail and Virgin Trains to transform the station into a cultural hub ahead of the 2014 Commonwealth Games. Says Ross Moran, Network Rail’s Station Manager at Glasgow 16

Central, ‘Our vision for Central is clear: to be the most innovative, creative and exciting station in the UK. For us, it is simply not enough to be a venue where people idly wait for trains. We aspire to be a cultural hub: a city within the city, where music and the arts can be celebrated.’ Bands playing Live at Central this summer have included Burt and the Bacherettes, Oompah Brass and Penman Jazzmen. Says Marty McGowan, Virgin Trains’ Commonwealth Games Liaison Manager, ‘Glasgow Central Station is more than just a transportation hub, it’s also a central stage and a place of excellence for us to show off some of what our fine city has to offer. We are especially excited to be showcasing some really great acts as we move closer to 2014, mindful of what a year this will be for the City of Glasgow.’

Says Simon Burns MP, ‘Used in combination, bike and rail offers one of the most environmentally friendly forms of travel. That is why DfT have provided £200k funding towards this innovative new cycle hub which will give people more options to make greener travel choices. ‘I am pleased that Abellio are using their experience and knowledge in the UK to introduce more ground-breaking cycle facilities. This is the sort of thing we need to be doing across the country to make it easier for people to cycle to and from the station.’ CyclePoint represents a significant investment of £680k by Greater Anglia, with support from the Department for Transport (DfT), Essex County Council and Network Rail.


Live at Central

the big challenge remains cooling the deepest parts of the London Underground. The tunnels only allow enough room for trains. There is no space for air conditioning ducts. Says Phil Hufton, LU’s Chief Operating Officer, “The new air conditioned trains have proved a massive success on the Metropolitan line and now customers on the Hammersmith & City are starting to feel the benefits. Throughout the coming months further new air conditioned trains will be introduced on the Circle line. But we know there is still a lot to do and cooling the other deeper lines of the Tube remains a considerable engineering challenge, but one which we are actively addressing.’ In the future running trains with a smaller kinematic envelope could allow room for air ducts. The next generation of underground trains will also be engineered to generate less heat.

Track plant event

best in show The first National Track Plant exhibition, held last month at Long Marston, showcased the best of the industry innovations – and generated good business. Over two blazingly hot days in July, a huge contingent of rail companies and kit rumbled into Long Marston, Warwickshire, for what amounted to the track plant industry’s first county show. Over 3,700 visitors and 219 exhibitors flocked to the National Track Plant Exhibition; organised by Network Rail, Rail Media and networking group The Rail Alliance. 18

Billed as “The Track Innovation Showcase”, the event was the first of its kind to be held in a railconnected venue. This allowed heavy rail-mounted plant, such as cranes and tampers to be brought in – hence the need for everyone to wear full PPE. Once a train depot for the military, the site is currently used by owners MotoRail Logistics and other companies to store rolling stock and plant, and as a training facility.

Range of suppliers From massive cranes and tampers to handheld tools, the

show spanned the track plant industry – from conventional plant to some unexpected offerings. Areas covered included: track plant hire, fuel systems, electronics, communications, sealants, track crossover systems, track safety protection, acoustic fencing, the Territorial Army’s only dedicated rail engineering unit, emergency lighting, blast protection, environmental management, surveying, civils, generators and industrial gases. There were also talks from senior figures from Network Rail and other contractors, a

hospitality tent, demonstrations and opportunities for visitors to try out new kit for themselves. “Many of the facilities here have been provided by the exhibitors,” said Sharmila Sohanpal, of Network Rail’s organising team. “People were keen to get involved as well as exhibit. So we had Aggreko, for example, providing the generators, MacRail doing visitor and exhibitor checkin, and security from OnGarde and Black Diamond Security. In addition, A Plant supplied washroom facilities, and Westwood the catering.”


Showcase for innovation Uma Shanker, Head of Business Improvement and Engineering for Network Rail’s Infrastructure Projects Track Programme, explained the reason for the show. “Control period five (CP5) from 2014-2019 will bring huge challenges for us. The industry needs to find innovative and collaborative ways to work, and this exhibition acts as a showcase for that. “At this show, people can talk to each other, and bounce ideas around. On top of this, they can see machines operating and live demonstrations in an operational, rail-connected environment.”

Live track renewal Visitors and decision-makers had their pick of exhibitors to look over – from Network Rail to smaller suppliers of tools, plant and equipment, such as DualInventive. A highlight was the “live” onsite renewal of 400 metres of track – the first-ever at a European track plant show – planned and delivered by Babcock and a team of its suppliers. Bruce Wright, Babcock Business Improvement Manager, said the aim of the renewal was to show how innovative plant and construction techniques could deliver a conventional track renewal with a minimal labour contingent. “It was a real team effort to overcome difficult site conditions, such as interfacing with the existing track work, which consisted of 75 lb rail bolted

directly onto mass-produced concrete sleepers, installed during World War II.” The delivery team included staff from Babcock, McCullochs, Quattro, Torrent, Morson, 3D Trimble supplier Korec, and Swietelsky Babcock Rail, which provided the tamper to finish the renewal off. Simon Higgens, Senior Programme Manager, said the renewal had gone well. “We wanted to demonstrate to the wider industry what’s out there and what’s available, and we did that. “Given the tight possession regimes we’ll see during CP5, I suspect that a lot of the technology used at Long Marston will become commonplace.”

Commercial success The relaxed atmosphere and sunshine stimulated commercial activity at the event. Deals were struck, product awareness raised, and new contacts made – between companies and Network Rail, and among the suppliers themselves. A case in point was neighbouring exhibitors Keltbray Aspire, with its ranks of plant, and Avonwood, manufacturer of the Zonesafe vehicle protection system for pedestrians. Paul Murphy, Head of Rail Plant, Keltbray, explained: “We were at the show to demonstrate to Network Rail our capabilities, such as bridge and tunnel maintenance, track renewal, rail piling and overhead line installation. “But it’s also been good for networking purposes, and for doing business. For example, we had a look at our neighbour Avonwood’s Zonesafe road rail vehicle (RRV) proximity warning systems. We’ve now arranged to trial two of their systems, with a view to potentially purchasing them, depending on the trial outcomes. Joe Rinaldi of Avonwood explained how Zonesafe works. “Zonesafe is a proximity warning system for any vehicle or RRV on the railway. Pedestrians working near the vehicle wear an RFID (radio frequency identification) tag. If a pedestrian gets within an adjustable detection zone, from 3-9 metres’ distance of the vehicle, a




control box in the cab sets off a visual and audible alarm, alerting the driver of the pedestrian’s presence. “Paul saw how the system worked, liked it and bought the system for a couple of his projects.”

roped-off area, a tracked robot resembling a model of a World War I tank was busily driving around. “These are remote-controlled slope mowers,” explained Richard McMurtry of the Gloucestershirebased McMurtry Ltd. “They can be used on steep slopes, up to 45 degrees, where health and safety issues might limit the use of strimmer gangs.This is our first venture into the rail market, so we’ve been talking to Network Rail about how to get product approval.

Small is beautiful

New products to market

Past the looming 500-tonne Ainscough crane near the site entrance, dozens of road-rail vehicles (RRVs) ranked along the lines, and the live track renewal, was the small exhibitors’ area – dubbed “Marrakesh Village” by organisers. There, rows of small white marquees hosted some of the most exciting developments for the future of track. From McMurtry’s remote-controlled robot mowers to Cintec’s waterfilled blast protection for buildings and Arbil’s sleeper-lifting devices, the village proved a hotbed of innovation. At the far end of the field, in a

Network Rail’s Steve Featherstone, Programme Director, Track, sponsored the event for the company. “A lot of suppliers have a good idea, but don’t know how to bring it into the industry, so our product acceptance people made themselves available to explain how we approve new products and services. “They also kept an eye out for anything that might prove useful for helping us meet our demanding targets over the next few years.” Chris Browne, Senior Engineer, Plant and Traction & Rolling Stock, was a member of Network Rail’s product acceptance team. “The

event was an ideal opportunity for us to talk through our approvals system and explain why we have it. “A lot of companies need support when they’re first breaking into the rail industry, and we helped point them in the right direction. We also helped bring manufacturers together, to improve their products for the industry’s benefit.”

Larger suppliers But while Network Rail product approval was key for many companies, larger suppliers were scouting too. Ben Mills, Business Improvement Engineer for Track Partnership – the infrastructure partnership between London Underground (LU) and Balfour Beatty Rail – said the partnership’s teams had visited almost all the stands at the show, looking for new ideas and meeting existing contacts. “We’re rewriting the process of how we replace track on the Underground. Every second counts, and we have to work hard to minimise disruption for the four million people who travel daily on the Tube. To support this challenge, we looked for, and found, all sorts of useful kit at the show. “For example, we recently


Visitor reaction

introduced LU’s first new sleeper for 30 years – the Cemex 1502 with Pandrol’s Fastclip FE fastening. At the show, we were able to talk to our suppliers about the next steps for the system. “Then there’s the Unimog RRV from Mercedes-Benz-Zagro, which featured on Balfour Beatty’s own stand. Using Unimogs means we can extend the scope of track renewals, and we also spotted other equipment that we can combine with to make our work even more efficient. “We’re also bringing in the Nonintrusive Crossing System (NICS), so it was good to see that company at the show. The NICS allows us to create virtual sidings and crossing points, helping to transform our approach to renewals in engineering hours on the Underground. In turn, this will reduce station closures and minimise disruption.” 22

Colas Rail provided a number of live demonstrations with the 125 tonne rail mounted Kirow crane lifting a locally stored tank wagon high into the air (pictured, page 20) and the PEM/LEM machines demonstrating their unique capability to not only lift and move track panels and S&C units by rail but to ‘walk’ these units when track is not available. Also, two track relaying machines (TRM’s) demonstrated their capabilities to remove and install track panels quickly and safely. Over at the live renewal site, visiting Network Rail Project Manager Simon Brett declared himself impressed. “It’s a chance to see things outside the box in track renewal – things that are on offer that we don’t do now, but could help us increase our efficiency in future. Seeing it in the flesh definitely brings that home.” Network Rail colleagues Francesca Wallace, Access Planner, and Lisa Riley, Planning Specialist, said their visit had been worthwhile. Said Lisa: “It’s been useful for us, and very interesting to see things like the live renewals and the demonstration of thermit welding. We spoke to lots of people, and even had a chance to sit in the Network Rail helicopter!”

End of the show As the show ended, hundreds of weary, but satisfied visitors began to stream out the gates, passed by some of the larger pieces of kit on their way home. Over in Marrakesh village, Bryan Blareau of Henry Williams – manufacturers of trackside equipment including fishplates, clamps and control cabinets – was one of the last to fold his tent and leave. “We’ve made some good contacts,” he reflected. “I’ve not had much chance to look around, apart from our neighbours, but we’ve seen the people we needed to see. For us, it was mainly about raising our profile, and I think we’ve done that.” For organiser Colin Flack, chief executive, Rail Alliance, such opinions were more than welcome. “This has been a proper trade show, but I think people enjoyed it because of its informality. “The big rail exhibitions are brilliant and have a place, but this sort of event gives people at all sort of levels a chance to talk to each other; to meet people and see what other companies are doing. “The next stage for this event, I think, is for a much larger supply chain to get involved. It’s a great start.

Rail Team of the year 2012

Civil Engineering Projects & Nationwide Plant Hire Stobart Rail owns and operates an extensive fleet of specialised plant that is available for hire with or without operators on a nationwide basis including road-rail equipment to match the special requirements of operations on, or near the permanent way. The Company has an extensive range of earth moving, excavation and earth removal vehicles, enabling Stobart Rail to tackle the most demanding of tasks - this significant investment is continually being added to and upgraded and is predominantly used on

Stobart Rails own contracted works. Stobart Railâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s substantial fleet of road-rail vehicles provides a comprehensive series of machine-to-trailer combinations, and also accommodates a host of highly specialised attachments; ranging from tamping and cabling equipment to ground investigation and soil nailing rigs. To enquire about hiring our plant for use on your next project (can include POL) or for our most recent plant register contact:

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HS2: the wider network, the wider benefits Conference sponsored by:

Conference supported by:

Think Tank, Birmingham Science Museum, Curzon Street, birmingham, b4 7xg.

Thursday 19 September 2013

On September 19th, at Curzon Street Birmingham, Greengauge 21 is holding the one must-attend conference on HS2 for 2013. At this crucial stage, we are taking the opportunity to answer the key questions that still surround HS2. Our aim for the day is simple: to transform any lingering perception that HS2 is of limited, narrow benefit. It isnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t: its beneficial effects extend right across the national rail network. Its impact on the economies of all of the cities and regions it serves will be highly beneficial â&#x20AC;&#x201C; both locally, and ultimately, to the national economy and exchequer.

We will hear from a leading independent economist why the north of Britain should be better linked to London and the south east.

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The day will be attended by key decision makers from both the private and public sectors. TFFNPSF BOECPPLPOMJOFBU XXXHSFFOHBVHFOFUBVUVNOITDPOGFSFODF

We will learn from HS2 Ltd about the new results from its leading edge work examining how the project will impact on city and regional economies, moving beyond the confines of traditional transport benefit cost appraisal. Again, this will be the first opportunity to discuss and debate this work in a public arena.

The conference is being sponsored by the HSR Industry Leaders Group â&#x20AC;&#x201C; a group of private sector businesses that want to see HS2 develop and flourish.


why attend?

industry leaders group

Recognising the people who keep the UK rail industry moving.



Railway Lessons for Democracy The great advantage of the RailStaff Awards and one which sets it apart from so many other worthy award schemes is the involvement of the people it celebrates. Railway workers up and down the network and from every part of the industry are free to send in nominations and to vote on the outcome. This is more important than it seems. The rail industry is now leading the economy by example. Confidence, value for money, emphasis on career development and responsible working practices all have lessons for the wider country which we serve. The railway had to learn the hard way. This was an industry only a few short years ago slated for managed decline and post-Beeching euthanasia, a sort of Liverpool p-way. Instead by dint of hard work, professionalism and admittedly tremendous strokes of good fortune - the rising importation of Chinese white goods and London’s economic upsurge - the railway fought back.

Ingenuity and initiative Rail freight continues to grow. Investment and major projects are forging ahead. Trains now carry more passengers than they did in their hey day 70 years ago. That they do so on half the amount of track is in no small part down to the ingenuity and initiative of the people the RailStaff Awards salutes. New projects including new railways, new stations, electrification and track doubling

are delivered on time and on budget. There are lessons here for a country struggling to find stability in a changing world. It is no coincidence that our light hearted Back-to-School theme this year shines a light on rail’s lessons and logarithms. It is important to be involved, to vote. Public disdain for politics is at an all time high. Many people argue there is scant difference between the three major parties. Throw in the sight of MPs being jailed and the whole profession is debased.

Boldness is not a crime This is unfair to the many MPs who work long and hard out of conviction. However they fail to take risks to get their message across. Boldness is not a crime and voters respond to it quite well. Look at the success of Nigel Farrage, even now considering his mistaken stance on HS2. Look too at Bob Crow’s call for a new true socialist party. The sight of the no nonsense secretary of the RMT entering the House of Commons and berating the besuited ones will be wondrous indeed. Can Bob and Nigel restore confidence in our democracy? A healthy democracy starts with the people themselves – demos mean people – getting involved,

arguing, discussing and then voting. Always remember to vote. Once again the railway, by selecting and voting for its own heroes, demonstrates democracy in action. The RailStaff Awards is all about the people who do the work. Those that excel are rightly recognised by their friends and colleagues. We look forward to saluting them and celebrating an industry that continues with confidence to light the way ahead. Voting finishes on 16th August – so take a look now and make your vote count.

Amy Selway of Transport for London won last year’s Newcomer-Graduate of the year 2012.

FirstGroup backs Lifetime Achievement Award PAGE 27

Green Light for Westermo PAGE 29



...for a National Railstaff Award and they could be on their way Back to School at the ICC on the 5th October 2013 and in with a chance to win ÂŁ1000! Nominate online at David Maidment Award for Charity

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FirstGroup backs Lifetime Achievement Award

FirstGroup is the proud sponsor of the Lifetime Achievement Award at this year’s RailStaff Awards. The company is Britain’s largest rail operator carrying more than 310 million passengers per annum. It operates First Great Western, First Capital Connect, First TransPennine Express, First ScotRail, First Hull Trains and London Tramlink. It runs regional and commuter services, open access and light rail operations as well as high speed inter-city trains and overnight sleepers – everything from local

services to long distance express trains. The company has a strong track record of investment with more than 700 new vehicles introduced and punctuality and performance increasing across each of their franchises since FirstGroup commenced operation. The company is committed to maintaining a leading position in the market through the upcoming franchising competitions. FirstGroup is also one of Britain’s biggest bus operators running more than one in five of all local bus services. In North America it is the

largest provider of student transportation with some 50,000 yellow school buses and operates the iconic Greyhound coach services. Says Tom O’Connor, managing director of Rail Media Group, ‘FirstGroup has been a stalwart supporter of the RailStaff Awards and railways and the people who deliver them. The Lifetime Achievement Award is very popular and it is entirely fitting that a company which grew from an employee-management buyout to a hugely successful international transport business should be backing this award.’

Delivering excellence Vernon Barker, Head of FirstGroup’s Rail Division, said: ‘The Lifetime Achievement Award recognises people who put their careers and much of their lives in to delivering excellence in the rail industry.’ He continued: “Right across the

industry we work with staff at all levels who work hard to deliver services, look after customers and keep the railway safe and successful. As I visit our offices, booking on points, maintenance depots and stations – right across our operating companies – I see at first hand the great work being done by colleagues day and night, 24/7. It remains a privilege to witness the commitment and professionalism of staff.’ ‘The railway, for many in the industry, is a way of life. Unlike most other sectors it is not uncommon to find colleagues with 30, 40 and 50 years service. There are thousands of people, including many at FirstGroup, who have served the rail industry faithfully over many years. ‘The Lifetime Achievement Award reflects the passion and commitment of men and women that have dedicated their careers and lives to manning our trains, selling tickets, operating signals and building and maintaining trains and track. They are the real heroes of the industry.’

Proud sponsor of the Lifetime Achievement Award at the RailStaff Awards

helping to build the nation Experts IN support services for infrastructure markets McGinley Support Services are pleased to be sponsoring

Rail Infrastructure Team of the Year at the Railstaff Awards 2013 0845 543 5953 27


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Green Light for westermo westermo Data Communications is sponsoring the Signalling and Telecommunications Engineer of the year award at this year’s RailStaff Awards 2013. The new award highlights important work being progressed by railway signalling and telecoms specialists throughout the industry. Says Phil Mounter, Infrastructure Projects Sales Manager at Westermo, ‘It is important to recognise the contribution made to railways internationally by railway signal engineers. Having a category devoted to Signalling and Telecommunications Engineers is important. We decided to back this new award as a way of saying thank you to the many signalling and telecommunications engineers at work in the rail industry and because we wanted to give something back to our customers, suppliers and staff.’

Says Tom O’Connor, managing director of the Rail Media Group, ‘Comprehensive re-signalling and better telecommunications means the need for new technologies and engineering skills has never been greater. We are delighted to welcome Westermo to the RailStaff Awards. I quite agree with Phil that we need to recognise the unique achievement and hard work of signalling and telecoms engineers in the rail industry.’

Data integrity Westermo products are built using high quality, military-grade components with low power consumption and data integrity in mind. Westermo offers some of the most reliable, secure and energy efficient products on the industrial market today. Founded in 1975 in Sweden, Westermo now has a global reach. In Britain Westermo has been

supplying Ethernet and serial industrial communications devices to the rail industry for many years. New ideas, top quality equipment and listening to the concerns of the engineers themselves has placed Westermo among the market leaders in signalling and telecommunications. Says Phil, ‘Every day we speak with signalling and telecommunications designers, installers, maintenance technicians, engineers and managers. This gives us a great advantage and explains why leading S&T engineers choose Westermo when building mission critical communications networks.’ Spread of best practice is integral to the Westermo approach. ‘Every year we host an annual rail summit where we invite the UK’s best S&T engineers along to learn from each other and show the latest products,’ says Phil. ‘This year’s event is at the Science Museum in London on Wednesday 30th October. We plan to invite the

first Signalling and Telecommunications Engineer of the Year to come to the summit and open the day.’ The RailStaff Awards recognise the achievements of railway staff from train drivers to engineers and trackworkers to train planners. This year’s RailStaff Awards take place at the Birmingham International Convention Centre on 5th October 2013 and are open to all who work and support the railway industry. For more info see and for Westermo see

Proud Sponsors of the Rail Safety Person of the Year 2013 With a reputation built on safely delivering multi-faceted projects we continue to provide a service of exceptional value to all of our clients. Bridgeway Consulting’s diverse portfolio of services ensures our clients continue to benefit from our ‘one stop shop’ service offering. We know that the quality of our people ensures that we provide a quality service and this is why we are pleased to sponsor the Rail Safety Person of the Year in the 2013 Railstaff Awards.

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The Transport Benevolent Fund (known as TBF) is a registered gistered charity 032) and in Scotland (SC040013) SC040013) in England and Wales (1058032)

Morson Group operates through two main subsidiaries, Morson International and Morson Projects. Morson International is the UK’s No1 Technical Recruiter and provides specialist engineering and technical personnel. Morson Projects provides outsourced engineering and project management design services. To date, Morson Group has presence is 57 office locations across the globe.

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Network Rail isNetwork proud Rail to sponsor is proud the RailStaff Awards 2013 to sponsor the  RailStaff Awards 2011 From pioneering investment and development projects, to innovations that make everyday It’s your hard work – the individuals and teams services faster, smarter andwithin saferour – we industry – that’sbelieve helping in us build a better railway for Britain. the recognising and celebrating From pioneeringindividuals investment and development projects, and teams that are enabling to innovations that make everyday services faster, smarter the transformation of our network. and safer, we believe in recognising the excellence that’s enabling the transformation of our network.

That’s why we’re very proud to once

That’s why we’re very proud to once again sponsor this year’s again sponsor the RailStaff Awards. RailStaff Awards.

Helping Britain run better A better for

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The Rail Alliance are proud to be associate sponsors of The RailStaff Awards 2013

Whatever you’ve done. Whatever life’s done to you. Call Samaritans. No pressure. No judgement. We’re here for you.  ŵĞ͘ ŶLJƟ

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London Underground proud to sponsor the 2013 RailStaff Awards At London Underground we recognise that our people are

work for us that will help us achieve the success of

critical to achieving our vision of a world class Tube for a

delivering an upgraded network while carrying record

world class city. So for the third year running, we are

numbers of passengers.

delighted to be an associate sponsor of the RailStaff

2013 is a big year as we step up the modernisation of the

Awards. These awards recognise and reward the brilliant

Tube to ensure it remains the engine room of the UK

work, dedication and commitment of individuals and teams

economy, helping to create thousands of jobs across the

from across the rail industry.

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At London Underground we’re firm believers in continuous

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Transport for London


Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s BACK...

The HR, Recruitment & Skills Awards 2013

NOMINATIONS OPEN! Help us find the best: Awards for Companies: Best Executive Search company in Rail Best Labour Supply Agency Best Rail Professional Recruitment company Best Training Organisation

Awards for Teams: Best Training Team HR Team of the Year

Awards for Campaigns: Best New Entrant Programme / Campaign Best People Strategy (Resourcing, Skills, HR) Best Recruitment Campaign

Awards for Individuals: HR Manager / Director of the Year Outstanding Contribution to the Rail Industry Trainer of the Year Recruiter / HR Person of the Year



Nominate for free at


Maria backs Samaritans Maria Fowler, (The Only way is Essex) recently helped raise awareness of the Samaritans. Having recently called Samaritans herself, Maria has firsthand experience of the value of talking. ‘Samaritans is a fantastic source of support. I only wish I’d got in touch earlier,’ says Maria. ‘Talking to them really helped. It was like having a nonjudgemental friend, something that is hard to come by in real life. It is so important that people talk about their problems, and if things are getting too much, Samaritans is available, any time of the day or night.’ Samaritans is working closely

with the railway industry – to reduce the number of railway suicides. People can get involved in the campaign by simply texting ‘SUPPORT’ to 70123 to make a £3 donation. Says Catherine Johnstone, Samaritans CEO, ‘It’s hugely important to talk about your problems, and Samaritans is here for anyone going through a tough time.’ This year Samaritans celebrates its 60th anniversary. Founder Chad Varah took the first call to the service on 2 November 1953. Samaritans is on 08457 90 90 90 and in Ireland on 1850 60 90 90. Visit

HS2 clears legal hurdles Sea-bay sensation at Swanage

A special six-car diesel passenger train from London used the newly restored bay platform at Swanage for the first time since 1966. SouthWest Trains supplied train and crew for the UK Railtours excursion special. The ‘Purbeck Adventurer’ used two three-coach Class 159

diesel units coupled together. To accommodate the six-coach ‘Purbeck Adventurer’, the Swanage Railway fully restored and brought back into use its secondary bay platform No. 1 at Swanage station – a platform that will be used for a two-year trial train service to the main line at Wareham from 2015. Says Swanage Railway Company chairman Peter Sills, ‘It was a very successful day and hopefully the first of many

with 370 passengers being brought into the Isle of Purbeck to enjoy the delights of Corfe Castle and Swanage – thereby giving a boost to local businesses. The Swanage Railway contributes in excess of £10 million a year to the Purbeck economy.’ From left with the train in the bay platform at Swanage – holding a photograph of a steam train in that same platform in 1966 – are driver Matt Southern, who drove the train out of the bay platform, guard Ian Valet and driver Rob Thompson who drove the train into Swanage. © ANDREw PM wRIGHT

work on preparations for High Speed 2 linking London, Birmingham, Manchester and Leeds powers ahead this summer after the Court of Appeal threw out further attempts to derail the scheme. The government will be introducing legislation in Parliament later this year to take forward HS2. Objectors used seven broad areas to challenge both the economics and the route of HS2. Says transport minister, Simon Burns, ‘By dismissing all seven grounds of appeal and declining to refer the case to Europe, this is the second time in four months a court has rejected attempts to derail HS2. Parliament is the right place to debate the merits of HS2, not the law courts, and we will introduce the hybrid bill for phase one before the year is out. ‘I urge opponents not to waste any more taxpayers’ money on expensive litigation and instead work with us on making HS2 the very best it can be. We continue to move forward apace with the crucial business of getting the scheme ready for construction in 2017 and delivering enormous benefits for the country.’



Long vision Marc Johnson reports


what does the name MTR mean to rail passengers in the Uk? Even London Overground customers could be forgiven for not instantly recognising the name - despite the fact that the company has jointly operated trains in the capital for the past six years. In Hong Kong, however, MTR is king of public transport. The company operates 46.4 per cent of the franchised public transport network and last year reported an underlying profit of £800 million. It has the combined role of infrastructure manager and train operator, both leading major expansion projects and taking on the responsibility of moving close to two billion people every year. More than 30 years after opening its very first line in Hong Kong, MTR is continuing to build more and is currently delivering five major infrastructure projects in the region, including the Express Rail Link which will connect the city with mainland China’s highspeed network. Although Hong Kong remains MTR’s stronghold, the company is gradually taking charge of more and more railways around the globe. In 2005, MTR decided to extend its reach, launching new businesses in Europe and Australia.

The company now carries a further 3 million passengers a day in services outside of Hong Kong, with more in the pipeline. Despite obtaining operating contracts in London and Stockholm, MTR Europe chief executive Jeremy Long, who was approached in 2005 to lead the European arm of the business, said the company has ambitions beyond the UK and Sweden. ‘I think the next most interesting market to us is Germany,” says Jeremy, who began his career in rail 15 years ago, co-founding GB Railways. ‘We’ve begun to look at Germany only more recently. We’ve yet to submit a bid, but it’s our intention that we do start to bid in Germany.

‘We were engaged in the process that had started last year for part of the Berlin S-Bahn. That’s a tender that the Berlin authority intends to proceed with. ‘There is quite a significant pipeline of tenders in various other regions and we’ll consider which of those are the right fit for us.’

The Hong Kong effect As well as adding new franchises and concessions to its portfolio, MTR wants to get involved in more projects outside of Hong Kong. MTR took over operations on the Stockholm Metro in 2009, having unsuccessfully competed for another commuter railway in the city. Now four years into its contract, the company has


To apply the Hong Kong model in Europe, Jeremy believes that it will mean working more closely with MTR operations around the world. ‘It’s about drawing the skills and the common expertise from the group. Not even just from Hong Kong,’ says Jeremy. ‘There are now common areas of expertise developing, for example between us here in Europe and Australia. There’s expertise that has now shown itself and proven itself in some of the new startups, the big startups, that have been taken up in mainland China.’

achieving high-operational performance that’s required. Out of that has come obvious interest in looking at the Crossrail opportunity which will be very, very important for London’s transport system. ‘I think it’s pretty clear that TfL want Crossrail to be one of the world’s best metro services. We recognise that and so it will be about meeting the challenge of the ITT, that we expect to see in a couple of months’ time, and responding to their bid early next year.’

“There is quite a significant pipeline of tenders in various other regions and we’ll consider which of those are the right fit for us…” JEREMy LONG, CHIEF EXECUTIvE OFFICER, MTR EUROPE

Going underground In 2014, the winner of the Crossrail concession is expected to be announced and MTR is competing against Arriva, Keolis/Go-Ahead and National Express for the honour. It is a win that would propel the MTR name into the consciousness of commuters around the capital. Speaking about the Crossrail project, Jeremy said, ‘TfL, I think, are pleased with what London Overground has achieved. We have continued to see very high customer satisfaction and we’re



contributed to the Stockholm 2070 study - a long-term strategy which looks at how the city’s metro system will need to grow over the coming decades to accommodate a swelling population. Says Jeremy, ‘We are clearly focussed on today’s railway and delivering high performance on the metro, but one of the key aspects at the moment is the level of crowding. ‘The level of growth the system is seeing in inner-urban and metro systems, not just on our system but the city as a whole, is growing and we’ve simply tried to set out some thoughts as to how the city might cope, looking long term at the growth needs. ‘We’ve known for some time there are plans to extend the network to increase its capacity but also to develop a lot more housing and commercial premises within Stockholm. ‘We would welcome the opportunity to look at how we might use what MTR calls its rail and property model to part develop, part fund or get involved in optimising rail and residential property.’


will Dunnett heads First Hull Trains will Dunnett has stepped up to take the helm at First Hull Trains. Dunnett becomes managing director after two years as commercial director at First Hull Trains. Will plans to work closely with the existing executive team building on a major strategic business review of First Hull Trains. Completed in February 2012, Dunnett’s comprehensive review has been heralded as the blueprint from which record-breaking passenger numbers have been reached for the business. He will report directly to FirstGroup’s Rail Division managing director, Vernon Barker. Will Dunnett started off as a marketing manager at Plaxton Coach and Bus in 1995. He

Richardson heads TXM

as we look to consolidate First Hull Trains’ position as the operator of choice on the East Coast Main Line.’ Passenger numbers surged through 2012 by almost 10 per cent. Exponential growth has continued through 2013.

Quattro stages MBO Quattro Group has been bought by its management team led by Finance Director David Callé. Previous owner, John Murphy, has retained a significant stake in the business and has taken over as Executive Chairman. David Callé takes on the role of Chief Executive Officer. Quattro Group was founded by John Murphy in 1989 and has since grown into a £40m business. Quattro is one of the leading suppliers of operated road rail plant in the UK and one of the largest operators of environmental machines. Says John Murphy, ‘Having built the business over the past 24 years, the time is right to further its development by passing control to the management team. Over the past five years, this team have helped develop the business into the leading RRV provider in the country and they are perfectly placed to continue driving it forward.

‘The buyout is all about maintaining the momentum of the organisation, and my new role as Executive Chairman means I will remain involved as the management team take Quattro Group on to the next phase of its development.’ New CEO David Callé has been involved with Quattro Group since delivering the acquisition of BCL Rail Plant in July 2008, a move that doubled the size of the organisation. In May 2009 David joined the Board as Finance Director. Says David, ‘This buyout is about continuity. The evolution of Quattro Group began five years ago with the acquisition of BCL Rail Plant and the business has developed every year since. We are delighted that John is remaining involved with the business and excited by the opportunities that we have to build on the strong platforms he has created.’

Tom Taylor Joins ORR Tom Taylor is to join the Office of Rail Regulation in October as director of Corporate Operations and Organisation Development. Cathryn Ross, currently director of Rail Markets and Economics, is leaving the organisation in October to take up the role of chief executive of Ofwat. Tom joins ORR from the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), where he is currently finance director. He led Defra’s contribution to the 2010 spending review and also spent time on loan to the Office of Climate Change. Tom joined the Civil Service in 1994 and went on to work in the Department of Social Security later Department for Work and Pensions. He has an MSc in Economics, a postgraduate diploma in public finance and leadership and is a Chartered Public Finance Accountant.

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Gareth Richardson has been promoted managing director of TXM Plant Holdings. Eight months ago TXM Plant Holdings acquired Network Rail’s plant business, NDS Plant Limited. Renamed TXM Plant, Gareth Richardson became Rail Director and has managed the day to day business operations ever since. Nick Barker, previously interim Managing Director, has taken on the role of chairman of TXM Plant. Keiron Gallimore and Laurence Seward continue as main board directors. Before TXM Gareth was operations director with Paul John Plant. He was national rail manager at Hydrex between 2002 and 2008. He joined Hydrex from Balfour Beatty Rail Plant where he was road rail manager. Gareth enjoys quad bike riding in Wales, clay shooting and country sports.

joined Jarvis in 2000 becoming group sales and marketing director. In 2005 he went to Q-Park as head of marketing, staying two years. Then came four years as marketing director at Superbreak. Dunnett joined FirstGroup in 2011. First Hull Trains, an open-access operator, provides 90 direct services a week to London, calling at Brough, Howden, Selby, Doncaster, Retford and Grantham. Says Vernon Barker, ‘I am delighted to welcome Will to his new role. He has shown excellent leadership in his role as commercial director over the last two years during which time the business has gone from strength to strength. ‘He will lead the First Hull Trains team at a very important time for the business, and for the city

Keep up to date with the Global Rail Market



Seller’s market Paul Seller has returned to Lloyd’s Register as Transportation Director. Mr Seller had been working for Bombardier in Berlin as a director of product safety and homologation – the art of securing approval certification for new products. At Lloyd’s Register Paul will be responsible for overseeing the growth of its consultancy and assurance services for the rail industry. The business already holds a broad portfolio that extends across Europe, the Middle East and Asia. In the past year Lloyd’s Register Rail has secured high-profile assurance roles on Crossrail, Etihad Rail and the extension of the Taiwan High Speed network. Paul Seller has 26 years experience of engineering and general management within the railway sector and previously worked for Lloyd’s Register

Police team for new railway In Scotland Transport Minister, keith Brown, has launched a dedicated British Transport Police team to patrol the Borders Edinburgh railway project. The railway police will work closely with Network Rail and BAM Nuttall, to keep the 30 miles of new railway free from crime. The team includes an inspector, a sergeant and seven constables. Says Inspector Angela McGregor, who leads the team, between 2001-11, during which time he developed its independent verification and validation services, managed its UK rail services team and was the global Business Development Director for its services to the rail industry. Paul will be based in Lloyd’s Register’s central London offices at Fenchurch Street. Lloyd’s Register Rail is a team of rail industry experts within the Lloyd’s Register Group working to improve the safety, quality and performance of railways across the world.

‘At this early construction phase, the team is working with those within the footprint of the major project to explain the role of BTP. ‘Officers are engaging with residents, who have not had a working railway in their area for more than 40 years, to address any concerns they may have, make them aware of safety measures required as well as providing essential security and crime prevention advice.’

Famous five join BTPA

DfT move for Brown Express Group plc, where he set up its UK Trains Division. Currently the Chartered Institute of Logistics & Transport’s Rail Professional Sector Ambassador and Vice President he was also the Institute’s President in 2008/9. Brown conducted an independent review of the department’s rail franchising programme in 2012 following the cancellation of the Inter City West Coast franchise competition, to which the government has recently responded.

Andrew Pollins, Dominic Booth and Mark Phillips are joining the British Transport Police Authority along with Stella Thomas, who will represent the interests of passengers in wales and Catherine Crawford, representing passengers. Crawford is a former Chief Executive of the Metropolitan Police Authority, a post she held for 10 years. The new board members will take up their appointments from September for an initial term of four years. The BTPA was established in 2004

Says Rail Minister Simon Burns, ‘The calibre of these new appointments is extremely high and I look forward to seeing them bolster the work of the Authority, particularly when representing those rail passengers.’ Andrew Pollins is currently Director of Finance for London Underground. Dominic Booth has been the Managing Director of Abellio Transportation Group since 2007. Mark Phillips is currently the Bid Director for National Express’s Crossrail bid, and has 26 years experience in the rail industry.

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Richard Brown has been appointed as a non-executive member of the Department for Transport Board by Transport Secretary, Patrick McLoughlin. Brown conducted an independent review of the department’s rail franchising programme in 2012 following the cancellation of the Inter City West Coast franchise competition. Richard Brown was Chief Executive of Eurostar from August 2002 to April 2010 and was previously Commercial Director of National




Performance role for Richard Rowland Richard Rowland has been appointed Performance Director at First Capital Connect as part of an initiative to give Network Rail more opportunities in the evening and at weekends to maintain and upgrade the track. Richard has been with First Group for eight years, initially with First Great Western before moving to First Capital Connect in 2009. With over 25 years experience in the rail industry Rowland started his career in retail and station management with British Rail. He rose to become Customer Service Director of Thames Trains. He has also been a member of successful franchising bidding teams and was responsible for the sale of the Merseyrail Electrics franchise on behalf of the Strategic Rail Authority. His more recent career has been in railway operations and performance management in First Group. Operations Director Jackie Townsend will continue to be

responsible for day-to-day operations but will have a new, specific role reviewing ways FCC can improve services on the London to Brighton and Wimbledon loop south Thameslink route. Says Jackie, ‘We need to look at how we work together with Network Rail and Southern at times of disruption, and improve the exchange of travel information between train companies. The aim is for a seamless service between

both companies with the passengers at the centre of our decisions.’ More train washing and additional cleaners on trains will boost cleanliness this summer. An emergency vehicle will be located at Brighton for driver managers and engineers to respond faster to train faults. FCC is also fielding more customer service staff on the southern part of the Thameslink route.

Dominic joins Network Rail Dominic Cheetham joins Network Rail’s dynamic PR team as deputy communications director from 9th September. The former Sheffield Star reporter worked for BBC Radio Sheffield and Yorkshire Television. The news broke on the nationally revered Yorkshire Day – 1st August. After working for the press Cheetham went on to work for Yorkshire Electricity in corporate communications. At British Gas – Centrica – he was communications director. In 2004 he joined Serco as Director Corporate Communications staying until April 2012. More recently Cheetham was an associate director of Jalebi and ran his own business, Red Kite Reputation Management.

Arthur moves on

Double Bill for Mace

Arthur Leathley, genial head of communications at virgin Trains, is leaving to become communication director at the Department of Environment and Climate Change. Says Arthur, ‘This is a fantastic opportunity. Energy and climate change matter to every individual and every business. The task for communications is clear: to demonstrate that the UK has secure, clean, affordable energy supplies and to drive international action to mitigate climate change.’

Jason Butterworth and Adam McAllister have joined Mace strengthening the top team at the cutting edge consultancy and construction business. Having previously worked for WSP, McNicholas, NG Bailey and Carillion, Jason Butterworth (left) has been appointed Director of Design & Transportation. Jason played a pivotal role in the growth of WSP’s rail business including high profile projects such as Crossrail Bond Street Station, West Coast Main Line Electrification and Thameslink’s

London Bridge Station. Adam McAllister (right) will take the construction lead role for the rail business working closely with Nigel Cole. Adam joins Mace from Kier, having previously worked for Birse Rail and Alfred McAlpine. Throughout his career Adam has gained invaluable experience working on projects such as the King’s Cross Station Roof Redevelopment, Crossrail Advanced Works, West Coast Mainline Upgrade Projects and the recent redevelopment of Epsom Station.

Arthur Leathley (left) with David Taylor from Thales who climbed Kilimanjaro in aid of the Railway Children.


The National Case for a High Speed Rail Network REF Technical Seminar Monday 21st October

Incorporating a specialist exhibition and drinks reception with guests from Whitehall and Westminster

The outline agenda is as follows:

For more details, please contact:


The National Case for a High Speed Rail Network


A New Rail Network: Delivering Better Passenger Services and Connectivity


HS2: Overture to a High Speed Network; Developing and Delivering the Next Stages for HS2

tel. 01732 36 33 99


Defining the Engineering Challenges of Operating High Speed Trains on the Existing Network



The afternoon session will take the form of a series of Case Studies, focusing on topics such as best practice, challenges, power requirements, rolling stock


Fit for today, ready for tomorrow


This August will see Paul Russell mark his first full year as the Head of CIRAS, the Uk Rail industry’s confidential reporting and analysis system. The year has been an interesting one with many challenges and one that has been used to shape the future of CIRAS. Here he explains what has been done to date and what he believes lies ahead. On arrival at CIRAS back in August last year, Paul had just completed a four year journey as an Assurance Director in the Transport division of Serco. He recalls, “This allowed me to work across many diverse cultures. Introducing a competence management system in the iconic Dubai Metro was a year long project and saw me staying in the UAE on and off over this period”. Russell says this experience was new to him, with the company having to recruit over 3000 personnel from over 25 different countries. “It was an incredible challenge. We had to introduce a competence management system and apply it to over twenty different nationalities and cultures. Not easy” However, Russell found that in some cultures, the management of staff can be different. “In the UK we encourage staff to refuse to work via a Policy if they have been asked by someone to carry out a task that may be in breach of the rules or is inherently unsafe. ‘Some nationalities have a different approach to workermanager relationship and some cultures will see their employees follow the instruction given to them regardless of whether they know it’s wrong. I found that strange but once you know the cultural differences, you then have to take that into account”. Paul reflects, “Serco were 40

Paul Russell.

applying best practice in the UAE but had to engineer it in a way to take into account all the diverse cultures”. He had other projects later in Australia and then in Delhi, India, which he said was another massive learning experience. Today Paul is much closer to home and travel these days expands the width and breadth of the United Kingdom. “One of my first tasks was to engage with the CIRAS scheme subscribers at all levels, from front end employees to senior management”. He continues, “I’ve not finished doing the rounds yet and still have many stakeholders to meet with and engage. It’s important to us that we ensure all levels of a company understand CIRAS and how the system operates”. We have been busy reemphasising what CIRAS is and what it isn’t. We aren’t a whistleblower and I would like to make that absolutely clear, nor are we an alternative reporting system. But what we are is a safety reporting system that complements a company’s existing safety reporting systems. Staff should report safety concerns internally, always. However I understand that in the complex world that we work in, sometimes reporting internally can prove difficult, or indeed may have been done but with no positive outcome. Sometimes the margin between an accident occurring or not, is too close for comfort. I believe what CIRAS offers is valuable and beneficial to organisations in its ability to provide them with a safety net, a confidential route that staff can take, that in the majority of cases, results in a positive safety outcome.


The alternative is that something unsafe remains in the system which could result in an incident occurring. The cost of this can be far reaching and may not only bring about financial loss or reputational damage but ultimately it can result in injury or even a fatality. We offer a company that safety net. Staff can ring our confidential reporting line and we will, on their behalf, liaise with the organisation to help bring a resolution”. Russell has slowly introduced changes to how CIRAS operates and initiated an independent review of the scheme back in January. This resulted in a number of improvements being identified and some that he stresses are critical to how CIRAS is perceived. “Our Governance arrangements are such that we have to be transparent in everything we do. We are a not for profit scheme and how we operate and what it costs is as important to our stakeholders as it is to us.” Russell is looking at some radical

changes that would transform the way CIRAS is funded and operates. “I have a good team around me and some seemingly impossible tasks now feel achievable, but we have a lot of work to do and delivering is always what really matters.” The biggest change to CIRAS though, is in the form of its new Strategy which was recently approved by the CIRAS Committee. “This is why I came here” Russell states. “The new Strategy allows CIRAS to look at other transport providers other than just heavy rail and offer the same services whilst maximising the opportunity to learn. This sits well with many of the current rail providers, as several of them are already part of much larger owning groups with other transport interests. However we must always protect the scheme’s roots, rail, and effective Governance ensures that.” The Strategy is due for launch in April 2014 but Russell acknowledges that there is much still to do before CIRAS is ready for

“We offer a company that safety net. Staff can ring our confidential reporting line and we will, on their behalf, liaise with the organisation to help bring a resolution” PAUL RUSSELL, HEAD OF CIRAS

lift off. “We are undertaking two targeted awareness campaigns across rail in the latter part of 2013. ScotRail, where CIRAS began, is helping us re-engage and get the right messages out to users of the scheme as well as the managers. ‘We are also in early planning stages with Greater Anglia and hope to roll out the same format as we do in Scotland. What has now been termed “The Three Cities Campaign” will take place in Glasgow, Edinburgh and Perth. Russell, originally from Glasgow himself, says, “North of the border

is going to be busy for us and we have also just recently signed up new light rail tram operator Edinburgh Trams.” CIRAS is certainly re-engaging and under Russell’s leadership has made a conscious decision to shift the perceptions of CIRAS from a “whistleblowing” scheme, to one that supports learning from culture issues, accidents and incidents by providing an additional safety net mechanism and capturing events that may not otherwise have been reported.


Call Your company is serious about health and safety. They subscribe to CIRAS because it is part of their safety strategy. They want your health and safety concern raised and resolved. Your best first action is to report it internally. Use all available channels. However if you need to speak with someone independent confidentially, call CIRAS.

0800 4 101 101

Freephone Freepost CIRAS Text 07507 285887


Skegness signal box.

Listed Status for signal boxes Twenty six of England’s signal boxes have been given Grade II listed status by the Department for Culture Media and Sport. Network Rail is decommissioning mechanical signal boxes to consolidate signalling into 12 regional centres. Says Heritage Minister, Ed Vaizey, ‘Our interest in everything to do with trains and railways…is one of our most endearing and enduring national preoccupations. ‘Signal boxes are a big part of this….It is greatly to Network Rail’s credit that they have worked so

Tube station For Sale Brompton Road tube station, which closed in 1934, has been put up for sale. The station was originally opened in 1906 by the Great Northern, Piccadilly and Brompton Railway (GNP&BR) on the Piccadilly Line, positioned between Knightsbridge and South Kensington. The building was designed by English architect Leslie Green and sports his distinctive oxbloodred tiled facade and semicircular first floor windows.


constructively with English Heritage to bring this project to such a successful outcome.’ Installed from the mid-19th century onwards, signal boxes numbered around 10,000 at the peak of their use in the 1940s. Today fewer than 500 are still in use by Network Rail. Signal boxes were built in highly visible spots at stations or level crossings to an infinite variety of designs, sometimes with beautiful detailing and embellishment far beyond what is needed for practical purposes. The boxes were constructed both by specialist contractors like Saxby & Farmer and individual railway companies, each developing their own distinctive style. Many still retain their original operating equipment and have become much loved local landmarks. In the north of England, Hebden Bridge Signal Box built in 1891, one of only a handful of Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway boxes to survive in anything like original condition, has a time warp quality, where both it and nearby listed station buildings still retain their original 1914 signage. The East of England boasts well preserved boxes built for the Great Eastern Railway like the one at Downham Market, which complements one of the most attractive small stations in East Anglia, and the wonderfully elaborate example at Brundall

which was built in 1883 and unusually is built of wood blocks cut to resemble stone. At Totnes in Devon, the large signal box, built to the Great Western Railway’s standard design used between 1896 and the 1920s, has what are in effect a series of bay windows to give the signalman a clear view down the line and striking contrasting blue brickwork. With the removal of the original operating equipment, the building has now found a new use as a café. Totnes shows that, although there can be issues with access and location, decommissioned signal boxes can sometimes be rejuvenated. They have been reused as cafes, museums or

holiday lets and, in some cases, moved to new locations, often on heritage railways. Says John Minnis, Senior Investigator at English Heritage, ‘We are delighted to be working in partnership with Network Rail as part of our National Heritage Protection Plan to seek out the best examples of historic signal boxes up and down the country. ‘These are very special buildings, at one time a familiar sight on our railway system. Today’s listings will ensure that many of these highly distinctive designs, which were full of character, are protected for years to come providing a window into how railways were operated in the past.’ Bournemouth West Junction signal box.


vintage Steam vintage steam engine 52322 has arrived at Ecclesbourne valley Railway and this summer will be pulling passenger trains between wirksworth and Duffield. Built in 1896, 52322 hauled trains amongst the cotton mills of Lancashire. Based in Lees, near Oldham for much of her life, the locomotive was purchased for preservation in 1960 and is one of the most attractive examples of a Victorian locomotive in operation on Britain’s heritage railways. 52322 rests at Idridgehay on 19th July 2013. Photo: Andrew Fowler.

Shed master heads North Former king’s Cross shed master and legend among railway staff, Peter Townend, thought he would never see A4s 60008 Dwight D Eisenhower and 60010 Dominion of Canada again after they left the Uk for America and Canada when they were withdrawn. When he heard that both locomotives were returning to Britain as part of the Great Gathering at the National Railway Museum he just had to be reunited with them. Peter Townend looked after 19 A4s at Top Shed, the widely used name for King’s Cross depot. Peter, now a sprightly 87 year old, started his railway career at Doncaster works in 1941 as a premium apprentice. He took up the post at King’s Cross in 1956, describing the five years he spent at the depot as, ‘Probably the hardest I have experienced but I am glad I had the opportunity to be associated with the depot in all its vicissitudes whilst steam traction was still at its peak on the Great Northern main line.’ Despite his fondness for steam Peter is a realist. ‘The end was inevitable, people generally were not prepared to accept the dirt, grime and smoke associated with steam traction and there were many menial unpleasant tasks that had to be carried out in primitive conditions at depots which few men really wanted to do,’ he said.

Now living in Devon, Peter still travels around the UK to visit LNER themed events. Ironically, many supporters of A4 designer Sir Nigel Gresley claim that GWR, the initials of the Great Western Railway that served Devon until nationalisation in 1948, stand for Gresley was right!

Top backing for Heritage Railways

Relaxed planning rules and a simplified procedure for modest extensions to heritage lines are among the supportive recommendations proposed by the All Party Parliamentary Group on Heritage Rail. Another success story in Britain’s rail industry is the upsurge of interest in traditional railways. Heritage lines are growing in popularity and are

now worth £250m to the economy, according to a report by the All Party Parliamentary Group. Over 100 heritage railways and tramways attract tourists and provide local employment as well as valuable skills training and apprenticeships. Heritage railways provide employment for over 3,700 staff nationally and a productive outlet for 18,500 loyal volunteers.

45 years after the end of steam on BR, over 750 steam locomotives remain hard at work on heritage railways. More surprisingly, a total of 520 steam charter trains - more than one a day - ran on the national rail network last year in addition to the heritage lines. Says Mark Garnier, MP for Wyre Forest and Chairman of the Group, ‘Britain pioneered heritage railways and is unique in the extent and richness of its railway heritage. This report is the first time the extent and success of the heritage railway movement has been fully assessed and the results are impressive. ‘What has been achieved has been remarkable and with a few recommendations to Government and the continuing enthusiasm of the army of railway volunteers and the loyal staff, we believe a lot more can be achieved in the future.’  Emboldened by his recent interview in RailStaff, transport minister Simon Burns MP, said, ‘Britain has a great rail heritage and as well as preserving an important aspect of the nation’s history, heritage railways also make an important contribution in supporting tourism and local economies. We are looking closely at the report and will consider its findings.’ Pictured: Mark Garnier MP delivering a copy of the report to the Secretary of State Eric Pickles.


Near Fatal Accident at Poole And my concerns for the future SAFETY Colin Wheeler

This summer is much better than the last couple of years, but noone can feel the same about railway safety either here or in mainland Europe. I must begin with the Rail Accident Investigation Branch (RAIB) alert, (sadly not yet featured on Safety Central) of the contractor working on a Network Rail Infrastructure Projects signalling job near Poole Station, Dorset. He is a very lucky man! At 1030 on Friday 12th July he was struck by a train but miraculously escaped with only minor injuries. He was working at a line-side equipment cabinet 380 metres London side of the station. He collected some equipment and was walking alongside the Up Line when struck a “glancing blow” from behind by the steps of a five car Class 444 train travelling to Poole.

No lookout or? I am indebted to a reader for his observations from an over-bridge at Petts Wood Junction on the Charing Cross to Dover line. The gang were on the Slow Lines with the two Fast Lines open to traffic. When a train passed the sounding of the train horn was not acknowledged. The gang appeared to have taken my enthusiasm for the abolition of the use of lookouts with flags, horns and whistles too

far. There was no sign of any form of protection at all as you can see in the pictures!

More instructions and rules? Last month I featured reader’s comments under the heading “New Initiative Overload” questioning the quantity of new initiatives and the lack of involvement of track-workers. Back in 1993 Graham Eccles produced a report on trackside safety. Under the heaading “Rules, regulations and other Instructions” he comments that these are; “produced by management to protect itself from criticism, too many of them and written in language difficult to understand and open to misinterpretation, never fitting the local situation” . His research revealed that over 70% of those killed had never been involved in a reportable accident before and 72% of those were “compliant people who

would always try and find a way of completing a task.” He comments that working with the adjacent line open to traffic “cost the lives of 12 people in the last 10 years and that the introduction of the red/green zone concept or the implementation of a speed restriction on the adjacent line makes little difference to the outcome”. The campaign that resulted was successful. It relied on a track safety group drawn from all over the railway but almost exclusively of front line troops. It had the power to propose, reject or approve ideas for safer working. Supervisors and local engineer members were respected by colleagues and the reputation of the group meant that everyone would be listened to when they questioned proposed improvements. My memories are that the most effective changes came from

track staff. Most important was the awareness and commitment that resulted due to the respect of track staff for the group. Consequently I have serious reservations about the Headquarters’ “Workforce Safety & Compliance Team” that has produced the “Adjacent Lines Open” instructions for compliance by August 5th.

Skills valued and people trusted? Instructions, risk assessments and method statements etc. are all useless, unless there is a commitment from everyone. Site audits with a tick box pro-forma are not the way either. Visiting when least expected and listening to track workers is crucial. Being seen to take on board their concerns, do something about them and returning to listen again will result in improvements. The enemies to

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this are cynicism, disbelief in management’s motives, short-cut culture and commercial pressures. I question whether safety concerns are best addressed by headquarters groups developing “better safer” ways of doing things? Anyone charged with doing so must spend at least a third of their time on track working with and listening to track staff employed by contractors and subcontractors as well as the infrastructure owner. The biggest mistake is taking away the opportunity for skilled people to interpret instructions and use their expertise. Too many are saying their skills are no longer valued so they just do as they are told!!

Fatal accidents around Europe There have been dreadful accidents in France, Spain and Switzerland. At Bretigny-sur-Orge in France the train derailment of the rear part of the train was caused by a loose/detached fishplate that ended up jammed in the crossing. Six people lost their lives and 62 were injured. Around 80 people were killed when the high speed train derailed on a curve in Spain whilst travelling at over twice the permitted line speed of 80 kph (50 mph). It is unclear whether or not the driver was still talking to the Ticket Collector on a mobile phone as his train derailed. I am interested having been involved in the investigations into two train derailments on the 50 mph restricted Morpeth Curve (both of which were caused by speeding). The head on collision in Switzerland between two passenger trains was unexpected given that country’s pride in its railway system. The lesson is that there is no room for complacency. From what we have heard any of these accidents could have happened here. Unless we do more our turn for a serious accident may come. Recent RAIB reports and alerts make sobering reading.

RAIB alerts and reports On May 31st an accident occurred at Balnmore automatic half barrier level crossing at 0305 in the morning. Although the

track over the crossing was under possession, the half barriers remained in the raised position and the road traffic control signals were not operating. As a Road/Rail Vehicle towing a trailer with weed spraying equipment went over the crossing a car was forced to swerve to avoid hitting it and ran into adjacent metal fencing resulting in minor injuries to its two occupants. At Butterwood level crossing on Tuesday 25th June this year an “incident” occurred at 0735. The barriers were in the up position when a single car Class 153 unit crossed. A power supply failure the previous evening had disabled the automatic barrier mechanism. The showing of a flashing red rather than steady white light should have warned the train driver but this was missed. The driver realised the barriers were up when he was 160 metres from the crossing travelling at 40 mph but was unable to stop in time. RAIB are investigating both incidents. The derailment of a freight train at Shrewsbury on 7th July 2012 makes disturbing reading. The leading bogie of the 16th wagon derailed all wheels as it passed over a set of points at just 14 mph. The derailed train ran on for 65 metres causing “significant track damage”. The cause according to RAIB – “points were unsafe due to wear and damage”. The report states that the defects were neither identified by inspection nor prevented by maintenance! It goes on to say that the regime in place at Shrewsbury Maintenance following modification of the standard in 2008 was “inconsistent” and that regular detailed inspections ceased in 2008, leaving only weekly patrolling and 13-weekly supervisor’s inspections. RAIB has published their report on the incident that happened at Bradford Interchange at 6-50 am on the morning of March 25th 2012. As a road/rail dumper was being lowered back onto its road wheels it ran away for 380 metres downhill coming to rest when it hit the platform 1 buffer stops. Thankfully the operator managed to jump clear.

The report concludes that the dumper was not fully braked as it was removed from track and adds a concern about “the level of safety assurance when modifying road/rail vehicles.” Recent level crossing incidents strengthen my concerns that local delegation and good relations with neighbours to the railway need to be reinforced. On Sunday July 14th a Class 170 DMU collided with a car towing a trailer on the user worked crossing known as Jetty Avenue 18 near Woodbridge in Suffolk. The train was travelling at slow speed and there were no injuries. The crossing provides access to a boatyard and mini warning lights were being installed at the time. Two days later at Buttington Hall, a user worked crossing near Welshpool, the Birmingham to Aberystwith/Pwllheli train hit a tractor and trailer on a private crossing used by a farmer for field access. Two agricultural workers, the tractor driver and just two of the train’s 140 passengers were

slightly injured. The farmer had brought in a harvesting contractor who had appointed an attendant for the crossing. The RAIB say the “system of work had broken down”. There was nothing wrong with the user’s approach to crossing the railway using Lindridge Farm Level Crossing near Bagworth in Leicestershire on March 22nd last year. He asked and received the signaller’s permission to cross but as he walked to open the far gate he saw a train approaching. The signaller’s workstation commissioned over two months earlier on, showed the crossing in the wrong place and a track circuit was wrongly named. The use of track workers skills and enthusiasm all need to be improved. The plethora of instructions has brought the industry to the point where “just do what I tell you” is the general message. Now surely everyone can see that it will never work?


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Night Riviera celebrations

Test train on trials

The Night Riviera has celebrated its 30th birthday. Cornwall’s night sleeper link with London was re-launched as the Night Riviera on 11 July 1983. Currently it is run by First Great Western and runs in both directions between London Paddington and Penzance. Since 2008 passenger numbers on the Night Riviera have risen by 10%

A former Silverlink 313 has taken the first of a series of test runs in its new role as a Network Rail test train. Train 313121 has joined the mellow-yellow fleet as a laboratory train for the ERTMS programme. The train will be used on the ERTMS National Integration Facility (ENIF) when it opens later this summer. Alstom refurbished the unit at its Wembley depot and fitted its own train-borne ERTMS kit, along with CCTV, workstations for engineers, extra batteries to power the equipment, a kitchen, and, in a notable first for a class 313, a toilet. Says Gary Porter, Network Rail programme director, traffic management and ETCS, ‘ERTMS will play a vital role in changing the way we operate our railway. Crucially, our facility at Hertford and this Class 313 will give us a greater depth of knowledge of the system as we prepare to roll it out on the network.’

year-on-year. The first sleeping car train on the Great Western Railway was introduced at the end of 1877 from London Paddington to Plymouth. First Great Western, which has run the service since 2006, provided passengers with a special anniversary cup cake and a glass of Camel Valley Brut from Cornwall.

McLoughlin hails Stewarts Lane star

“…more orders coming including the order for Crossrail trains that will be determined next year… there’s every opportunity for Bombardier to compete…” TRANSPORT SECRETARy PATRICk MCLOUGHLIN

Transport secretary Patrick McLoughlin visited Stewarts Lane depot on 30 July to view the first Southern class 377/6 to be delivered. The visit coincided with the an announcement that the contract with Bombardier to supply a further 116 vehicles has been confirmed in a deal worth £180 million. News of the new contract will provide a boost to workers at the Derby plant. Reflecting on this Mr McLoughlin told 46

RailStaff, ‘I think Bombardier has put it behind them. There was disappointment and I shared that disappointment, but the amount of investment we’re putting into the railways means that there are more orders coming including the order for Crossrail trains that will be determined next year. I think there’s every opportunity for Bombardier to compete.’ The class 377/6 is the latest in a series that dates back to 1997. The design philosophy

behind the Electrostars stems from rail privatisation when train builders had the opportunity to ditch a made for measure approach and opt for an off the shelf design that was a non-specific, go almost anywhere type of train. Improvements in the 377/6, which makes use of the class 379 body design that is compliant for crashworthiness and tunnel operation, include the use of traditional windows as opposed to ribbon glazing and there is a slight difference in body profile at floor step level. The train also has new software for the Orbita maintenance management system. Before the first class 377/6 can enter passenger service it has to accumulate 1,500 miles of trouble free running and undergo compatibility tests to ensure that it can operate with earlier variants of Southern class 377s. The first unit is expected to enter service in September, with the whole fleet ready for the December timetable change.


Factory train to electrify west A factory on rails will slash years off the time it takes to electrify the Great western main line. Network Rail is working with German manufacturer, Windhoff, to build a High Output Plant System (HOPS) special train to do the job. With 235 route miles to electrify between Maidenhead and Swansea the new 23-vehicle train will be able to work west, building the railway electrical infrastructure as it goes. Adjacent lines will remain open to traffic – albeit at reduced speed. HOPS carries enough supplies and equipment to avoid having to bring anything to the trackside on lorries. Staff can be picked up at stations en-route. The train divides into sections or consists. These include pile drivers and vibrators, a concrete mixing unit, equipment that will help raise 30 masts a night and an electrical consist.

Southern comfort for Bombardier Staff at Litchurch Lane in Derby are celebrating Bombardier’s new contract to supply a new fleet for Southern. The new contract is worth £180m and is for the supply of 116 coaches, an improved version of the Electrostar. Says Southern Managing Director, Chris Burchell, ‘We have worked extremely hard to be an effective delivery partner to the Department and we are very pleased to have reached this important milestone in the procurement of new rolling stock. This will provide essential capacity to allow our industry to grow.’ The new carriages should be ready in 2015 and the contract provides for an extra 140 vehicles if needed.

The individual portions of the train – the consists – can be detached and set to work in separate sections of the project. Each consist will include two MPVs (multi-purpose vehicles) with full driving cabs, powered by MTU power packs, which can be driven at 60 mph off-site. On site driving cabs will allow the train to be driven very slowly in possessions, such as when installing contact wire. Around 200 people will work on the HOPS project overall, employed by operator Amey, and recruited from along the route of the line.

Regional Director Robbie Burns with the piling rig on the HOPS.

Windhoff project manager Peter Formann.

wolverton makeover for 365s First Capital Connect’s fleet of Class 365 trains is to be transformed with fresh interiors and better accessibility as part of a £31m investment. Eversholt Rail Group leases the trains to FCC and is funding the work, which will be carried out by Railcare at its Wolverton plant. Also included in the project is a major overhaul of the trains which will ensure their continued reliability. The first new-look train is expected to enter service at the end of 2013. Says David Statham, Managing Director, First Capital Connect, ‘Everything our passengers tell us shows that a clean and comfortable travelling environment is important to them. This major investment in one of our biggest fleets of trains will give us just that, a brighter, new-look train cabin with better information and better facilities for people with

disabilities.’ There are 40 four-car 365s in the First Capital Connect fleet. They were built by ABB at York from 1994 to 1995. Says Mary Kenny, Chief Executive Officer, Eversholt Rail (UK) Ltd, ‘We are delighted to be funding this investment in the Class 365 fleet and helping to improve the journey experience for FCC’s passengers. We believe

refurbishment is an efficient way of bringing benefits to both the train operators and users.’ Eversholt Rail Group owns approximately one third of Britain’s stock of passenger trains, some 3,500 vehicles, and more than 1,000 freight wagons and locomotives. Over the past two decades, it has invested more than £2bn in rolling stock.



Green apple for flyover

Network Rail has won a Green Apple Award for protecting biodiversity during the building of a new flyover at Heathrow Junction - part of the Crossrail project. The new flyover will allow Crossrail and Heathrow Express trains to join the Great Western Mainline towards Paddington without causing disruption to other services. The Green Apple Awards are presented each year to organisations which carry out

projects that enhance the environment. A number of wild orchids, newts and fish, and a metre long eel, were relocated at the junction. The award was presented to Clare Rice, Network Rail construction manager, Dave Jones, designer Jacobs’ senior ecologist and Elwen Tasker, contractor Carillion’s environmental manager at the award ceremony.

Over 180 rail apprentices have joined main line operations teams after completing the first year of their training at HMS Sultan. On-the-job training takes over now as the apprentices continue with Network Rail’s 3-year advanced apprenticeship scheme. Lewis Ashton, 21, has recently joined the track team based in York. Says Lewis, ‘I heard about the scheme on Facebook and I joined because I wanted job security and to learn a real trade. The whole package was really attractive; pension etc and the qualifications are transferable so it seemed a secure career to get into. ‘There’s a good balance between younger and older apprentices and its good that we’re all in it together. I’m itching to get out on the track and start really working I can’t wait to get stuck in.’ The first year of the awardwinning three-year scheme is spent at Europe’s largest engineering training facility at HMS Sultan in Hampshire. There, apprentices specialise in track,

signalling, telecoms and electrification and plant. During their second and third years they work on the rail network’s front line, gaining vital experience as they train to become maintenance technicians. Throughout this time they regularly return to HMS Sultan for further courses and training to add to the experience gained on the rail network. Says Phil Verster, Network Rail’s route managing director, ‘With the huge challenges we face maintaining an increasingly busy network we need a highly skilled and dedicated workforce, so I’m very pleased to welcome Lewis and all our new apprentices onto the railway for the first time. ‘Our experienced engineers will further the apprentices’ on-the-job training, teaching them all they need to know to become invaluable members of the Network Rail team. They can be proud to be part of a company which helps move four million people and millions of tonnes of freight every day.’


Photo: Dave Jones, Clare Rice, Doreen Lawrence OBE and Elwen Tasker.

Tilting beer sensation Celebrating its continuing success in the west, virgin Trains has teamed up with Macclesfield’s Redwillow Brewery to launch a brand new beer called Tilting Ale. The beer will be served on board trains. Enthusiasts claim to be already acquainted with the concept. Virgin describes the beer as light, hoppy and arriving right on time with a clean bitter finish. ‘We’re always looking at ways to improve the choice and quality of the food and drink on sale from our on-board shops,’ says Virgin Trains Onboard Product Development Manager Rob Taylor. ‘Real ale is growing in popularity and we’re delighted to have been able to partner with a brewery so close to one of our stations.’ RedWillow was founded by Caroline and Toby McKenzie in 2010. ‘We’re really excited to have been given the opportunity by Virgin Trains,’ says Toby. ‘We are striving hard to introduce real quality ale to a much wider audience and we couldn’t have

picked a better company to work with. It’s particularly pleasing for me as prior to setting up RedWillow with Caroline, I used to travel from Macclesfield to London every day with work. The service onboard was, and still is, second to none so to be chosen to be part of that is a big feather in the cap for the brewery.’

Sultans of swing

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John Dennis Knight in White Satin The enduring popularity of rail hero, John Dennis, was amply testified by the huge crowd packing into All Saints Church, kemble to the strains of the Moody Blues for a Service of Thanksgiving on one of the hottest days of the year. John died of cancer on the 8th July, aged 65. Originally from Newcastle upon Tyne he read Geography and Economics at Bedford College, London. In 1970 John Dennis joined British Rail as a graduate trainee on the London Midland Region. Later he worked in Stoke on Trent and was instrumental in setting up TOPS - the Train Operating Processing System. As BR moved to sectorisation – a series of rail businesses – John was appointed customer services director of the newly formed Regional Railways. Switching from the passenger sector John moved to Railfreight Distribution, BR’s international freighting arm charged with running freight trains through the Channel Tunnel as soon as it was opened. Later John joined BR’s privatisation unit. By now his knowledge of the emerging railway was much sought after and he went to work for the newly created Railway Forum. The object was to give the industry a unified voice. The Railway Forum really hit its stride under Adrian Lyons, ably supported with facts, figures and dark detail by John. In December 2003, he was tempted away to ATOC as Communications Manager where his deep knowledge of the railway was much appreciated and deployed in the development of initiatives to promote the industry’s success and growth. It was John who worked out the industry was carrying over one billion passengers a year and gave RailStaff one of its most memorable front pages. John Dennis was a firm supporter of the RailStaff Awards from their inception. Away from work John was a committed family man. Together with his wife Sue he raised three fine daughters, Rachel, Sarah and Rebecca. In Kemble he was a strong supporter of the local Rotary Club and deeply involved in village life. 50

RailStaff November 200 9

For even more

Issue 144

news and job s, see

Rail Shock A John Dennis s Quits

www.railwayp Railway staf f face a troubled Christmas as UIC–complia rail hero John nt wagons read Dennis steps down y to roll through the after a long tunnel the mom and successful ent it opened. The career on passenger serv Britain’s railways. ice had to wait another year. ‘John was Always at the real euro-sta the forefront of prog r,’ reflected a ress colle John is leaving ague. So popular did his high pow he become with ered position at ATO SNCF that chem the C where he was inots at Calais Corporate Affairs commissioned a new Manager. Thro vers ion of Blondie’s ughout his career he hit single ‘Den has been a forc is, Denis.’ His e for unity and cohesion enthusiasm for the Tun in the rail indu nel and long dista stry. John, 62, has nce freight was so taken early retir infectious civil ement following a bou servants nick nam ed him ‘Dennis t of bad hea lth and the Venice.’ joint inflamm Follo wing the open ation – unkindl ing of the Cha y nicknamed ‘Dennis nel nTunnel John Elbow’ by frien was drafted ds. Originally from in to strengthen the Gateshead, Board’s beleague John Dennis joined privatisation red British Rail as unit. Childho a grad od experiuate trainee in ence running September 1970 a fruit and veg after a blissful you stall in Seaton Carew th during the was to prove swinging sixties. His biog invaluable. raphy, ‘From Whitley Bay to West John’s unique Kemble,’ thro powers of reco ws little light on a noto nciliation and dial riously private ogue were calle character. After join d on again following ing BR in the privatisation Midlands John went on when he joined the new to work at Stok ly formed Rail e on Trent and was way Foru m as Commun involved in intro ications Director ducing TOPS, Trai Tensions betw . n Operating Proc een bus com essing System – desi panies were promptly gned to improve lowe red perf by mance. This orthe Pacer pioneer. Pace gave him a rs were designed thorough knowledge of along the lines of a train operation bus. All s both in I did was take the freight and off the ‘Shop at passenger sect Binns’ signs John which stood him ors once said with cust in good stead omary modesty in the years ahead. . In December 2003 John wen Following BR’s t to ATO C at the launch of move to sectorisa an upbeat protion – creating a serie indu stry initiative s of rail business that he has don - John was mad es much to sust e e head of Cus ain. Since join tomer Relations for ing ATOC the industry Regional Rail has won back ways. The ing for the customers conc electrificatio erned were quit n of the Grea e oft Western ten local auth Main Line, orities of bew ope ned the network’ ildering political com first high spee s plexity. How d rail link, High ever whether talki Speed One, and star ng to loony left ted work on councils or be-whiskered Crossrail. John is planning colonels John a trip to Australi was able to draw He remains a a. with equal dext keen long dist erity on his Gateshea ance cyclist – a habit d street-cred that dates from and Novocastrian soph an early paper roun istication. d in Byker. Mr Dennis alHappily he ways spends was instrum a week every ental in the introduct year travelling by rail ion of Pacer train through out s, class Euro es 140-144 and pe using BR priv pass thanks to his es. Companions pioneering work with mark that he reTOPS was uniq seems equally uely positioned to keep at home haggling in the track of whe gran d souk in Istan re they ended up. John bul or reading ‘Cascade’ Den Goethe in the nis remains a mythica beer gardens of Augsbur l figure in PTE g. history to this day. Says Diana Luca s of RSSB, ‘Peo He then joined like ple John make up the Railfreight Dist back bone of ribution – the BR the industry. Board’s internat He was there ional freight business to offer a considered judg – to prepare ement and prof for the opening of sional eye on esthe Channe proc l eed Tun ings while nel. Thanks to his maintaining efforts BR had a sens e a of humour. fleet of adapted Fren speak for all I ch locos, the when I say we BB22000s and a poo will miss him a great deal l of over and wish him 3,000 well for the future.’

Crossrail (see inside back cover for details)

John was a keen traveller. He quartered Europe annually using his railway priv-passes and later travelled on the Trans Siberian Express pushing on across China to Hong Kong. Family holidays were planned meticulously and John was a keen walker and cyclist. At his retirement Diana Lucas of RSSB spoke for many when she said, ‘People like John make up the backbone of the industry. He was there to offer a considered judgement and professional eye on proceedings while maintaining a sense of humour. I speak for all when I say we will miss him a great deal.’ Adds RailStaff editor, Andy Milne, ‘Many of us drew upon his knowledge and wise counsel down the years. Whatever mystery he unravelled was always tempered with humour and laughter. He had a true Geordie sense of the ridiculous. I think I shall miss that most of all.’ Rachel and Ian’s wedding was brought forward and staged in the hospice just a few days before he died. The Wedding Service itself went ahead at All Saints as planned the following week.

Quite by chance on leaving the church, family and friends were comforted to hear a steam train thundering through Kemble. As it cleared the station the engine let go a long shrill whistle, seemingly in salute.

Quite by chance on leaving the church, family and friends were comforted to hear a steam train thundering through Kemble. As it cleared the station the engine let go a long shrill whistle, seemingly in salute…



Colin Nash Telling a Thousand Stories to railways by allowing his beliefs and instincts to mature. At his interview to join the company in 1991 Colin stated that he was the closest thing to perpetual motion they would ever see and he spent the next twenty years proving it. He never stopped for lunch or coffee breaks and it was totally symptomatic of the man that at his passing he was working with director Colin Garratt on an upbeat feature for RailStaff magazine. Colin Nash’s love of photography made him a definitive Picture Library Manager. Over the years he despatched thousands of images for use in every conceivable way. His own photography progressed superbly at Milepost and he became a crack railway photographer in his own right as his work on successive years of the Virgin Trains Calendar clearly proves. The Garratt/Nash partnership was to exert a tremendous influence on the development of railway photography - their work has never been bettered. Eventually there was nothing at

Milepost to which Colin Nash could not turn his hand; cataloguing, computer and keyboard skills, admin, accounts, design, marketing, railway history and world railways today. He was a superb handy man to have around from bookshelves to blocked drains, the answer to the problem lay in his voluminous tool bag. Says Colin Garratt, ‘Colin Nash was the ultimate continuity man – he could have made a fortune in the city. He could have six different jobs sizzling away in different parts of the studio waiting for him to hone his skills on each with his unique blend of alchemy, reliability and masterful precision.’ Perhaps his greatest attribute was the cheerful optimistic demeanour he projected to the outside world. Nothing was too much trouble. He epitomised the ‘can do’ philosophy. He was a good man and an honest one who captivated everyone he came into contact with. The railway industry has lost a great supporter. Colin Nash died at the age of 71 and is survived by his wife Anne and daughter Abigail.



Colin Nash was born in wolverhampton on 5th June 1941. His father was a locksmith. Upon leaving Art College Colin joined Chloride Batteries as an engineer, working in Peterborough. After being made redundant in the late 1980s he moved to Uppingham and sought a complete change of career. Colin was determined to get into photography which had always been his hobby. To this end he telephoned Sal Sheul of BAPLA (British Association of Picture Library Agents) and she put him on to Milepost, where he would find the job satisfaction he was looking for. A keen beer drinker Colin was noted for his own home made brew. Colin Nash died suddenly at Milepost 92½ on 3rd July. Since joining the company in 1991 he devoted his life to the organisation supporting its mandate to promote the case for railways. A keen photographer himself he readily identified with the quality of Milepost’s picture library. At Milepost Colin Nash was able to give unfettered attention


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Rail, Infrastructure & Construction 52

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Production Manager Salary depending on skills & experience Acton Depot, Horn Lane, Acton, London, W3 0BP Owned by Deutsche Bahn, Europe’s largest freight haulier, DB Schenker Rail (UK) Ltd is one of the fastest growing private rail companies in Europe, providing a range of freight haulage, engineering, maintenance and IT services. An exciting opportunity has arisen at Acton, which is one of the busiest and diverse locations within DB Schenker Rail UK. We are looking for a customer focused manager to lead and manage a designated group of train drivers, Groundstaff and Engineers to deliver a high performing work force. This role is both challenging and varied, with a real emphasis being placed upon ‘real time leadership’, it will appeal to someone who is prepared to challenge the unacceptable and potential candidates must possess a sense of urgency and have the ability to meet set timescales. Duties of the role will include but not be limited to the following: Daily line management of Traincrew; Assessments and compliance; Leadership and management skills; Investigate accidents, incidents, poor performance and record sickness occurrences; Attend incidents and derailments assuming the role of RIO (Rail Incident Officer) including on-call commitment; Cost control and budgetary controls and team coaching/methods of instruction training. The ideal candidate will be qualified in Rules & Regulations within the rail industry and have at least 3 years management experience in a field operations role; have a proven track record of leading successful teams; management of safety critical operations; managing customer traffic flows, and services bought in from others and management of KPIs and Service Level agreements with internal and external customers. For more in-depth information on this position please log onto our website at The interview process will consist of a competency based interview and individual presentation. The successful applicant will need to comply with DB Schenker Rail UK’s policy on drugs and alcohol. To apply, send your CV and covering letter (including your notice period) by email to Closing date for applications is Friday 30 August 2013. DB Schenker Rail is an equal opportunities employer.


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RailStaff August 2013  

RailStaff Newspaper August 2013