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BRITAIN RUNS ON RAIL | 12 RDG chief executive Paul Plummer sets out the aims of the organisation’s new campaign.

COMMUNITY RAIL CRESCENDO | 22 What the promise of new funding and a change in leadership will mean for ACoRP.


How greater automation will lead an evolution in the roles and responsibilities of operating staff.


RAILSTAFF AWARDS 2016 | 35 With just a month to go, we look forward to this year’s event.

MAINTAINING STANDARDS IN POST-BREXIT BRITAIN | 52 NCB’s Stuart Gough offers some insight into what impact Brexit could have on technical standards for the railway and what the company’s plans are for the future.



S U C O F 58 n of Railway o OCUS | ARTP aFte on the Associa) tiand its members. P An upd rs (ART Provide g in in ra T

WHY I BECAME A SIGNALLING APPRENTICE | 66 Two of Carillion’s signalling apprentices explain why they chose a career in this dark art.











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Going for Gold

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People concerned about Britain’s ability to survive as an independent nation outside the European Union should take comfort from two inspired stories this summer.

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© All rights reserved. No part of this magazine SEPTEMBER be reproduced in any form without the prior written permission of the copyright owners.

First consider the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. The British came second. This is a remarkable feat for a country one fifth the demographic of the United States with a land mass a fraction of an American state or Chinese province. The reason is not to be found in any imagined racial advantage the British might once have asserted, quite the reverse. Second, while the world’s athletes competed in Brazil with inspired power and © Ocean Group

grace, railway staff around Britain made similar advances. The orange army forged higher, longer feats and raced ahead with record breaking aplomb. The Dover sea viaduct project was completed three months ahead of schedule. Track renewals, signalling upgrades and bridge replacements went ahead as Britain cheered on its brave athletes. Crossrail, Great Western Electrification and upgrades to Scotland’s railway system rolled up an Olympian 'bossa nova' of achievement. Rightly this is being celebrated in the RDG’s, ‘Britain Runs On Rail’ campaign. Lest we grow complacent it should be remembered that both events played out against a disturbing background of health scares in Rio, the Zika virus, the onward march of an iniquitous terror movement and a rash of ill judged strikes. However, it is worth celebrating the ability of a free society to capitalise its potential. A free country which encourages people of all ages and backgrounds to pursue their dreams is a successful country. Dire warnings of post-Brexit penury will prove unfounded. At a recent full cabinet meeting new premier, Theresa May, affirmed, ‘We’re going to make a success of it,’ and described it as an, ‘Opportunity to forge a new positive role for the UK in the world; to make sure that we are that government and country that works for everyone.’ Confidence is key to success; confidence in self, sport, industry and country. The confidence on display around Rio de Janeiro and across a thousand miles of railway in Britain this summer should inspire us all. FACEBOOK.COM/RAILSTAFF | @RAILSTAFFUK | RAILSTAFF.UK




Night riders London Underground’s Night Tube services are attracting tens of thousands of passengers to the Central and Victoria lines. Says Mayor of London Sadiq Khan, ‘It’s wonderful that so many thousands of Londoners were able to benefit from a faster and simpler journey home overnight. ‘The Night Tube is going to provide a huge boost to our capital and very clearly

demonstrates that London is open. It was a real pleasure for me to see first-hand how workers and those who had been out enjoying everything our city has to offer could take advantage of this fantastic new service.’ The Night Tube is expected to support around 2,000 permanent jobs in London’s night-time economy, which will be boosted by around £77 million a year. Over 500 of these jobs have been created directly through

the operation of the service, with new part-time drivers, station staff, maintenance workers and service control staff employed and new BTP officers put on the network. The Mayor is investing an extra

£3.4 million towards policing for the Night Tube. This will see around 100 officers out on the network when full services are underway, with at least as many officers out during the night as would be seen during the day.

Dennis scores half century Dennis Squirrell, a grandfather and top performing member of the team at Ely station, is celebrating 50 years on the railway. Dennis Squirrell joined the railway on 8 August, 1966, when he was just 15 years old, working for British Rail as a trainee crossing keeper at Ely North Level Crossing. He worked at several local crossings including West River, Kiln Lane and Queen Adelaide, before moving to Cambridge Carriage Sidings to join the presentation team, which is responsible for cleaning the carriages. After 14 years, he joined the team at Ely as a station cleaner and customer service assistant before moving to train dispatch in 2013. ‘My favourite part of the job is definitely the people,’ he said. ‘I see so many friendly faces every day and it’s good to have a laugh and share a joke. I have really enjoyed my time working on the


railway and have made so many friends. I don’t plan to retire just yet!’ Dennis, who lives in Ely, enjoys spending his holidays in the Isle of Wight with his wife, Karen, and their little dog, always travelling by train. The father of three has two grandchildren and another on the way. Says Andrew Goodrum, customer service director, Abellio Greater Anglia, ‘We are very grateful to Dennis for his long service on the railway. He consistently has high scores from mystery shop audits and has been recognised for his firstrate customer service on many occasions. ‘Dennis is very highly thought of by his colleagues and by customers, and has his own unique style of friendly banter with many of our regular customers. Well done, Dennis, and congratulations on 50 years’ service to the railway.’




Row for ram-jam Jeremy

A publicity stunt staged by the embattled Labour leader, Jeremy Corbyn, has backfired. Seats were available on the train in which Corbyn was filmed sitting on the floor, talking about overcrowding, Virgin Trains has found. CCTV footage taken from the train on August 11 shows Mr Corbyn and his team walked past empty, unreserved seats in coach H before walking through the rest of the train to the far end, where his team sat on the floor and started filming. The same footage then shows Mr Corbyn returning to coach H and taking a seat! There were also additional empty seats on the train (the 11am departure from King’s Cross) which appear from CCTV to have been reserved but not taken, so they were also available for other passengers to sit on. However, Corbyn paid tribute to rail staff, after commenting on overcrowding, saying, ‘The staff on the train are absolutely brilliant, working really hard to help everybody. The

reality is there’s not enough trains, we need more of them.’ Virgin Trains East Coast is introducing a brand new fleet of 65 Azuma trains from 2018, which will increase seating capacity out of King’s Cross by 28 per cent at peak times. A spokesman said, ‘…But we have to take issue with the idea that Mr Corbyn wasn’t able to be seated on the service, as this clearly wasn’t the case. We’d encourage Jeremy to book ahead next time he travels with us, both to reserve a seat and to ensure he gets our lowest fares, and we look forward to welcoming him onboard again.’ Meanwhile Virgin Trains - on the West Coast - is offering 20 per cent advance ticket discounts to delegates attending the Labour Party conference in Liverpool from Sunday 25 September to 28 September. Jeremy Corbyn is committed to renationalisation of the railways if elected. Virgin Trains East Coast will pay £3.3 billion to the exchequer over eight years as part of its franchise agreement.

Close shave Brave cancer fighter Andy Jones has had his beard shaved off at Chippenham station to raise money for Macmillan Cancer Support. Andy, 50, who works for Great Western Railway was diagnosed with cancer in May 2015, after he originally went to the doctors thinking he was suffering from asthma. Andy was diagnosed with stage 4 bowel cancer. After chemotherapy, Andy was eventually discharged from hospital on 26 August 2015 and continued with his treatment while returning to work in Swindon on a part-time basis. He finished his last round of chemotherapy on 21 January this year. Since returning to work, he has set his sights on, he says, ‘Giving something back to the cancer charities that offer so much by way of support to both sufferers and all their friends and families.’ So far he has raised over £1,250 and is keen to raise even more as a thank you to Macmillan for the great work that they do. To help go to: fundraising/AndyJones1072





Dover soul

Network Rail has largely completed a £39.8 million emergency project rebuilding the railway between Dover and Folkestone. Network Rail’s orange army has worked flat out to build a new 235-metre long viaduct supported by more than 130 concrete columns. The line returns to the national rail network a full three months ahead of schedule. Local MP Charlie Elphicke paid tribute to the hard work put in by railway staff. ‘The work that has taken place in the last nine

months is a tremendous piece of British engineering, and a tribute to the dedication of both Network Rail and Costain staff. ‘The railway between Dover and Folkestone is a key method of transport for residents of Dover and Deal, and I’m delighted that it has been returned to them within a year of the line being closed.’ The line had to be closed on Christmas Eve last year after extensive damage to the sea wall was found at Shakespeare beach. Mark Carne, Network Rail chief executive, seconded the local MP’s congratulations.

‘This project is a huge achievement for all involved, and I’m extremely proud of what has been done by those who have been working on the project since December. ‘Finishing this project three months ahead of schedule is a reflection of the continuous hard work that has been taking place here, setting the standard expected at Network Rail. ‘We face some big challenges in the coming years, but with the skills and the dedication on show here at Dover I know we will face them head on...’

Tube hero praised Apprentices join steam team British Transport Police want to trace and thank a London Underground passenger who climbed down onto the track bed to rescue a distressed man who had collapsed off the platform edge at Tottenham Court Road. The man, who fell into the safety culvert and was recovered by the anonymous hero, was unhurt except for minor cuts and bruises. Other passengers notified staff who alerted emergency services. The rescued man was treated by paramedics at the scene and then taken to hospital. ‘Going onto the tracks is extremely dangerous, but the bravery of this man has to be praised,’ says BTP’s Superintendent Chris Horton. ‘On behalf of everyone at British Transport Police, I’d like to commend this man for his brave actions. His quick thinking most likely saved the man’s life.’


Engineering apprentices have been helping the team at Darlington Locomotive Works build new steam locomotive No. 2007 Prince of Wales. The apprentices, from Virgin Trains, gain firsthand experience of working on a steam engine in a workshop. The scheme is part of a sponsorship agreement established to help the A1 Steam Locomotive Trust. The trust built Peppercorn Class A1 locomotive No. 60163 Tornado from its original drawings. Says Mark Allat, chairman of the Trust, ‘We’re delighted that apprentices from Virgin Trains are now working with us to build No. 2007 Prince of Wales, a true inheritor to this route’s combination of speed and style.’ Michael Olley and Simon Nadolny, both 23, are usually stationed at Virgin’s Bounds Green depot in London. As part of their apprenticeships in electrical and mechanical systems maintenance engineering, they work on the maintenance and repair of Virgin Trains’ electric 225 fleet, which is in daily service on its east coast route. Says Simon, who is from Doncaster, ‘We’ve been getting down to basics, bending metal and hammering nuts and bolts into place, helping to install three large fabricated frame stays and assembling the smokebox lifting

sheets. It’s been a real privilege and I’m proud to have played a small part in creating what will be the UK’s most powerful steam engine.’ Michael, from London, agrees. ‘It’s been great to have the opportunity to work in a different type of environment. The Trust’s approach to solving problems has provided really good insights which we can take back to the day job.’ Virgin Trains’ engineering apprentice Michael Olley works on the smokebox door of the steam locomotive Prince of Wales

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Selwyn brings sure touch to Supertouch

Property development Neil Sachdev (left) and Steve Smith (right) have been appointed as non-executive directors of Network Rail’s new Property Board.

Personal protective equipment (PPE) specialist Supertouch has appointed Selwyn Smith as supply chain manager for the UK. He joins Supertouch from SiG plc where he was UK inventory manager. Smith’s career in supply chain began with ERA Security Products where he spent six years as supply chain manager before moving to the Epwin Group plc for a further six years as group procurement manager. ‘Selwyn is an extremely experienced supply chain professional,’ says Supertouch managing director Sarah Bridge. ‘During 2016 we have experienced significant growth and Selwyn’s appointment will help us to advance further within the PPE and Workwear sector, while ensuring that we continue to meet the needs of our valued UK customer base. We are all delighted to welcome Selwyn to the team.’

Established in 1996, Supertouch specialises in the manufacture and supply of quality PPE and workwear. The business which has offices in Brentwood, Essex and Smethwick in the West Midlands employs more than 50 staff. Supertouch was recently identified as one of the London Stock Exchange’s 1,000 Companies to Inspire Britain. The report is a celebration of the UK’s fastest-growing and most dynamic small and medium sized businesses.


The appointments follow the announcement last April that Network Rail was giving its specialist transport property business, Network Rail Property, greater independence. The new structure aims to boost Network Rail’s property activities generating £1.8 billion to fund the Railway Upgrade Plan by disposing of various assets. Neil Sachdev is a former board property director at Sainsbury’s (2007–2014), directly responsible for developing five million square feet of new retail space and creating over £2 billion of value. Neil is currently a non-executive at NHS Property Services Limited, visiting professor in the built environment at the University of Salford and chairman of Market Tech Limited and Martins Properties Group. He was appointed an MBE in the recent Queen’s Birthday Honours.

Steve Smith during his time as chief investment officer at British Land was directly responsible for group strategy and investment, including a £1.4 billion development programme and £600 million of property disposals, which largely consisted of non-core assets. Prior to this Steve was the chief executive of AXA Real Estate Investment Management (REIM) UK, AXA’s property investment subsidiary, where he was responsible for all asset management and transactions across the UK and Europe, with £40 billion of funds under management. Says Chris Gibb, chair of Network Rail’s Property Board, ‘The new Property Board will allow the wider company to focus on improved services for passengers and protect the efficient operation of a safe, reliable and growing railway. ‘It will also enable the property business to continue to create extraordinary places from our unique asset portfolio and make stations destinations in their own right.’




Grade B-listed Shankend Viaduct, nr. Hawick HAWICK

PHASE 1 NOW OPEN! EDINBURGH-TWEEDBANK Opening day service at Stow Station 2015


Founded in 1999, the Campaign for Borders Rail (CBR) has been one of the most successful grassroots rail campaigns in Great Britain, a story of concerned citizens from all walks of life getting together to right the 1969 injustice of complete closure of the 98-mile Waverley Route through the Borders. With our initial goal secured - services on the rebuilt 35-mile ‘Borders Railway’ from Edinburgh to Galashiels and Tweedbank began on 6th September 2015 CBR is now focussed on onwards extension to Hawick and Carlisle, lobbying hard for a full and fit-for-purpose feasibility study as soon as possible.

With YOUR support we can achieve our aim!

Membership is from only £5 a year to £50 for life; just ring our secretary on 017683 62022 or email for details of how to join online, or send a cheque to ‘CBR’ at The Station, Long Marton, APPLEBY, Cumbria CA16 6BJ. Facebook campaignforbordersrail Twitter @BordersRail


Source: Reproduced under licence.


or nf joi nly o

Upper: Copyright Walter Baxter, Lower: Copyright Robert Drysdale, CBR.


RSSB expands board RSSB has recruited two new non-executive directors. Lee Jones will represent infrastructure contractor members on the board. He has more than 35 years’ experience in the rail industry and is currently sector director, rail and metro, at Amey. Prior to this, he was Tube Lines’ operations director for the Jubilee, Northern and Piccadilly Lines, covering the period of the London Olympics in 2012. He succeeds Paul Kirk, whose 10-

year term ended in July. Phillip Hoare, group managing director, Transportation UK & Europe at Atkins, will represent supplier members on the board. Hoare, a chartered civil engineer with more than 20 years’ experience working in the highways and transportation sector, is a member of the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) and the Chartered Institution of Highways and Transportation (CIHT). He succeeds Jeremy Candfield, whose 10-year term on the board ended in April.



Keith Gallagher joins Komplete Group

Becky Lumlock joins Network Rail

Keith Gallagher has joined Komplete Group to lead its recruitment division. Keith brings an impressive record of industry experience and financial results achieved at some of the leading names in the recruitment sector.

Network Rail has appointed Becky Lumlock as route managing director for Wessex, which includes Britain’s busiest railway station, Waterloo, and the major commuter area to the south and west of London.

Keith’s most recent accomplishment was establishing a recruitment division from scratch at KPI Recruiting Ltd, where he worked as director. He has had a number of other senior appointments, perhaps most notably at Roevin Management Services Ltd, where he worked as operations director and managing director, and at Millbank Group Ltd. as operations director. Simon Pitt, managing director of Komplete Group, said, ‘We are already benefitting from Keith’s hands-on style, as we aim to grow our niche recruitment offering and presence throughout the UK

in rail, and also in the energy, engineering and the wider construction sectors.’

Becky will join Network Rail on 1 November from Shell/BG where she is currently managing director of Dragon LNG, one of the major gas import terminals in the UK. She replaces John Halsall whose move to the organisation’s South East route was announced last month. Becky has over 20 years’ experience working in the energy industry, living and working internationally on four continents, delivering major infrastructure projects and managing complex oil and gas operations. She was named as one of Australia’s ‘100 Women of Influence’ in October 2012, by the Australian Financial Review & WestPac Bank Plc. She served on the Global LNG leadership team for BG Group Plc.


She will work closely with South West Trains, which operates the main rail franchise on the Wessex route. Says Phil Hufton, managing director, England & Wales, ‘I am pleased to welcome Becky to Network Rail. She has worked in a wide variety of senior leadership roles and served as a board director on several joint venture companies, including in the Middle East and the Americas. Her strong commercial background and the transferable skills she brings from her experience in the energy industry will be invaluable on this busy route.’

Carlin in charge at Loram UK Joe Carlin has been named as the interim managing director of Loram UK. Based in Derby, Loram UK is owned by US company LORAM Maintenance of the Way, which in July completed its acquisition of rolling stock engineering and operating company RVEL. Andy Houghton, Loram

UK’s commercial director, will assume a deputy managing director role to support Joe while a permanent replacement is found. Says Joe Carlin on his appointment, ‘Loram UK is committed to working with our customers, supply chain and stakeholders to deliver cost efficient railway engineering,

operations and rail-head treatment services to Britain’s railway. ‘I am delighted to take up the baton handed on by Andy Lynch who built up RVEL into an organisation that we were proud to bring into the LORAM family. I have asked Andy to continue his support for Loram UK by acting in an advisory role.’

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head of the launch of the new Britain Runs on Rail campaign, the RDG’s chief executive, Paul Plummer, is on a mission to get this positive message across - one that he hopes will boost pride amongst people working across the rail industry, as well as build support amongst the public for continued investment in rail. ‘The unprecedented investment going into the railway is a story I’m determined to take to the wider world,’ says Paul. ‘As an industry, we need to raise public awareness of how taxpayer and passenger money is spent. And with rail companies delivering over £50 billion of improvements as part of the Railway Upgrade Plan to build a bigger and better railway, it’s crucial we start getting that message out there.’ Britain Runs on Rail is due to launch in the autumn. Across the country, the general public - including rail passengers and non-rail users - will see a series of innovative adverts. The ads are designed to be thoughtprovoking, evoking a sense of ‘Britishness’ with symbolic representations of the railway. They’ll show the ever more vital role of the railway and explain why improvements are necessary. The campaign has been developed by the RDG, which represents Network Rail as well as freight and train operating companies. Says Paul, ‘This is the first industry-wide campaign of its kind since the 1980s and it’s great to see all elements of the rail industry supporting it. The RDG has led the initiative, but Britain Runs on Rail is very much about bringing together Britain’s rail companies and this is reflected in the ads themselves.’


RailStaff is excited to support the campaign and readers will have seen features in the previous editions. Paul Plummer was appointed last September and took up the position two months later, succeeding the widely respected Michael Roberts. He has the advantage of a long involvement with the rail industry, witnessing up close the industry’s recent transformation. ‘Having worked for the railway for much of my career, I’ve seen at first hand how the industry has changed in the last couple of decades. I’m focused on ensuring that this continues and we go on to build the bigger and better railway that the nation needs,’ says Paul.

ECONOMIC SUCCESS For Paul Plummer, Britain’s railway is an essential part of the country’s economic dynamic. Plummer read economics at Exeter University and went on to gain an MSc in economics at York. ‘Britain Runs on Rail explains the ever more crucial role of the

railway,’ he says. ‘The Railway Upgrade Plan is the biggest programme of investment in the railway since the Victorian era. Investment is needed to maintain and build the railway passengers want and the country needs.’ It is a remarkable vote of confidence in an industry once seen to be in decline.

MASSIVE GROWTH Central to Britain Runs on Rail is the ambition to throw a spotlight on the railway, not just as a means of transport but as an economic lynchpin. Paul Plummer continues, ‘It’s an extraordinary story of transformation to meet massive growth in demand - both from passengers and freight; a story of how the railway enables


Britain Runs on Rail is crucial to building and sustaining support for the railway.



housing, jobs and economic growth. The railway and its supply chain now supports 216,000 jobs nationwide and pays up to £4 billion in tax to the public purse, boosting the UK’s productivity by £10 billion a year. ‘Taxpayers are investing billions in the railway and passengers are paying an ever greater share of the day-to-day cost of running services. Our goal is to sustain support from the public, private sector and government for continued investment. In this way we can build the bigger and better railway that our growing number of passengers and the country need and want.’

ECONOMICS OF SUCCESS The RDG under Paul Plummer is setting about telling the story of today’s railway, highlighting its increasingly crucial role. It’s a challenge the former group strategy director at Network Rail relishes. Plummer spent 13 years at Network Rail responsible for the development of corporate strategy. He has also worked for the rail regulator, the ORR, where he was chief economist and director of economics and finance. The economics of success form a common thread, from the quays down below Exeter University up through positions at Rothschild’s Global Financial Advisory division and NERA Economic Consulting, to a demanding leadership role at the RDG. Paul lives with his family just outside London and commutes in to the RDG’s offices near the Barbican. In his spare time, he enjoys running and is a keen kayaker - he recently completed a canoe trip from Devizes in Wiltshire to Westminster, a distance of 125 miles. The focus at the RDG is on enabling rail companies to succeed in delivering a successful railway, bringing together all operators with Network Rail and HS2. FACEBOOK.COM/RAILSTAFF | @RAILSTAFFUK | RAILSTAFF.UK




ENGAGEMENT Why launch a campaign now? ‘Research has shown us that the way to engage with the public most positively is to explain the role and purpose of the railway,’ says Paul. He stresses, ‘It helps define national identity. We use this engagement to then tell the story of the improvements.’ Plummer is aware of the hard work ahead. ‘We know we need to do more to raise public awareness of how money from taxpayers and passengers is improving journeys and why this investment is necessary. ‘We’re engaging across the industry with passenger groups and business organisations, all of whom have been really supportive of the campaign. The Department for Transport has been very encouraging, including the new Secretary of State,’ says Paul.

CREATIVE The ads have become something of a talking point at the RDG’s offices. Paul Plummer continues, ‘The images we’re using are intended to be thought-provoking. We have worked with leading creative directors and photographers to design the artwork. I’ve just seen the drafts and they’re looking great: unfortunately I can’t give away any more details as the images remain top secret until launch date. But readers should keep an eye out for them appearing in the autumn.’ The ads are underpinned by facts and figures fundamental to the campaign, highlighting how the railway is driving economic growth and investment in the industry benefits everyday lives.

RAIL LOGO Once again, the British Rail double arrow logo is being pressed into action - it has long survived as a symbol of rail identity and marker for railway stations. Paul explains, ‘The other aspect of the campaign that your readers are bound to have noticed is the reworking of the national rail logo as the campaign identity. ‘We wanted to take this iconic feature of our railway, give it a modern twist, but most importantly use it as a way of demonstrating how rail companies are working together as one railway, to deliver for passengers and the country. The eagle-eyed amongst your readers will see how the different colours are symbolic of different rail company logos.


‘The ads will be displayed on billboards and posters around the country as well as digitally. They will also appear on the railway’s advertising spaces, on trains and in stations.’

NO TIME LIKE THE PRESENT Railways will always remain a much debated area of public life. Is this really a good time to be launching the campaign? ‘Maybe there’s never an ideal time to start this campaign but it’s needed now more than ever,’ says Paul. He warms to his theme, ‘Our industry is seeing unprecedented amounts of change and investment which is why rail companies are working closer together to improve performance, tackle capacity issues and improve customer experience. ‘Yes, there are challenges ahead, but Britain Runs on Rail gives us all the chance to build on the passion and energy we have for the railway to a nationwide audience. Whether that’s friends, family or colleagues, Britain Runs on Rail is your opportunity to promote the railway: use the ads as a talking point, debate the issues they throw up – we want this kind of engagement to create interest and awareness.  ‘Don’t worry if people don’t agree with you – we all know the railway is a highly complex industry that can provoke strong feelings! ‘On a more individual note, don’t forget to take part in the competition: tell us why Britain Runs on Rail and you’ll be in with a chance to win return Eurostar tickets to Paris! Readers of RailStaff will see the Britain Runs on Rail lapel badges featured on the front cover of this issue (many rail companies will also be stocking these). Do take one and wear it with pride.’

SEA-CHANGE ‘If we’re to succeed in doing this, we have to bring people with us – and Britain Runs on Rail is crucial to building and sustaining support for the railway. ‘I’m passionate about telling this story to the public, harnessing the massive enthusiasm for the railway across the industry to achieve this. And I’m looking forward to having that national conversation, painting a picture of our growing industry and the positive impact it has on all our lives.’

Britain Runs On Rail achievements • By 2019 there will be 170,000 more rush-hour seats on trains into London: 20 per cent more than in 2014. • 30 per cent more seats on trains into cities across the north of England, with £1 billion invested to make room for 44 million more passengers a year. • Our work to electrify main lines connecting our cities will cut delays and increase capacity. • Better stations throughout the country – whether large city-centre stations such as Edinburgh, London Bridge and Birmingham New Street as well as many smaller stations such as Llandudno, Market Harborough and Rochester. • Plans to modernise train tickets will see the phasing out of the orange paper ticket as more and more people use mobile devices and smartcards.


TELL US WHY ‘BRITAIN RUNS ON RAIL’ and be in with a chance to win Eurostar tickets!

As the rail industry comes together to launch a new national campaign – Britain Runs on Rail – rail industry staff have a unique opportunity to get involved. All you have to do is complete the sentence: Britain runs on rail because… The person replying with the most original answer will win two Eurostar tickets return to Paris (plus domestic rail tickets return to London St Pancras)! Please email entries (by 5pm, 30 September 2016) to:

See for full competition terms and conditions.




Staff back Nightwatch New charity, Sutton Nightwatch, which supports the homeless, has benefited from over £700 as a result of votes by Southern rail staff. The Sutton charity was one of three good causes which staff could vote on when they completed the company’s Employee Survey. Sutton Nightwatch, which was launched last November, was suggested by HR advisor Gayle Campbell. Top of the list was

Embrace East Success, which looks after children with special needs and was put forward by Moulsecoomb station clerk, Su Rogers, in recognition of all the support they have given her and her son over the years. Pictured (left to right): Nightwatch’s Dean Killick, Julie Denyer, Lisa Jane Brown, Station Manager Trevor Leonard, Nightwatch’s Cristina Brice, Andy Faulker, and Southern’s Gayle Campbell

Costain close call Staff and friends at Costain’s London Bridge Station Redevelopment are working with leading charity Prostate Cancer UK to raise awareness of a cancer that affects one in eight men in the UK. Led by Graham Dean, community and security manager, and Amy Nott, project skills co-ordinator, and the site’s two occupational nurses, the campaign has included the showing of a video ‘Two minutes to save a man’s life’ at the start of each shift. More than 1,000 life-saving ‘Know your Prostate’ information cards were also distributed across

Sunny side of the Street

the site. Prostate cancer survivor Bill Pechin, one of hundreds of trained volunteers, also visited the site to share his experience. He spoke to more than 900 of the workforce about the disease, what to look out for and how to seek help from Prostate Cancer UK’s specialist nurses. The Costain London Bridge project team also raised £6,000 for the charity through the Close Calls scheme. Every time an employee submitted a card that reported a close call on site, Costain made a donation to the charity, whose headquarters are close to the project site.

Highland fling Engineers and contractors working round the clock have managed to re-open a stretch of the West Highland Line closed by a dramatic landslide in mid-August - at the height of the tourist season.

Historic Crewe Diesel Depot has been completely refurbished by new owner Locomotive Storage Limited. The main tenant is LNWR Heritage, which is responsible for overhauling main line steam locomotives, including boilers and carriages.  The site includes a locomotive and carriage workshop, storage area, heavy lifting shop, and a boiler department that manufactures new components. New lifting equipment supplied by Street Crane is playing a key role at a specialist rail depot, which helps to preserve heritage rolling stock. In addition to an existing 40-tonne capacity Street crane, three new 5-tonne overhead cranes were purchased by Locomotive Storage. Specified for regular daily use, the RAILSTAFF.UK | @RAILSTAFFUK | FACEBOOK.COM/RAILSTAFF

new cranes carry out heavy maintenance lifting and general workshop duties. Says Bob Samples, Locomotive Storage’s depot manager, ‘The railway industry has used overhead cranes for many years to help lift heavy components and ensure that operations are efficient and as safe as possible. The new Street cranes are much more advanced than the ones we’ve used previously as the technology has advanced considerably. They’re easy to operate, reliable and almost completely maintenance free which is a major benefit, ensuring we can work without worrying about downtime.” Crewe Diesel TMD, which is situated south of the station, was built in 1958 by BR. The depot was used to stable fleets of new diesels replacing steam traction. Locomotive Storage Limited took it over from DBS in 2014.

Over 100 tonnes of mud and stones spewed across 70 yards of the Fort William Mallaig stretch near Lochailort after torrential rain destabilised the hillside. Track workers and engineers worked flat out through the weekend to remove the spoil. The nearby main road was also cleared. Teams completed the job by 2200 hours on Sunday, 14 August. Rail services were able to resume running Monday morning.




Felix in Fairy Bricks fundraiser Felix the Cat, senior pest controller at Huddersfield Station, has been sponsored for the smart moves she makes over the last two weeks in August.

Viva la vida! A new piano has been donated to Leeds station after the old one was vandalised. Once again members of the public can take a turn at the ivories. Among the first was Nick Mitchell from Bramley who played Vanessa Carlton’s ‘A Thousand Miles’ and various Coldplay hits. Northern Rail put out an appeal on social media. The piano was kindly donated by Besbrode Pianos of Holbeck. Says Shaun Pearce, station manager for Northern, ‘It was upsetting and frustrating when the original piano was vandalised and lots of customers were asking where it had gone. Thanks to Melvyn at Besbrode Pianos, we now have another one in place and encourage anyone to get involved and play it.’ Says Melvyn Besbrode, ‘This is a refurbished Daneman school piano and plays beautifully, so hopefully there will be plenty of accomplished or budding pianists coming through the station ready to keep others entertained.’ Stuart Garden, a professional pianist was on hand to play. Passers by stopped to listen.

The mouse-masher of Huddersfield is raising money for the Fairy Bricks charity. So great has local support been that Felix has upped her target to £5,000. Fairy Bricks brightens the lives of sick children through Lego. Volunteers buy, collect and build sets, which are then delivered to hospitals to be played with by children on the wards. The charity teamed up with Bright Bricks, a professional building company, to build a life-sized version of the rodent terminator. Felix has been fitted with a miniature GPS transmitter to measure the distance she travels. However, the transmitter had several cat-atonic problems. Despite the minor cat flap donations keep flooding in - see felixcat Felix has proved a popular member of the team at Huddersfield since joining in 2011.

She is rumoured to patrol every inch of the station from cat-walk to cat-acomb. Staff make sure she stays clear of the track - Felix does not have PTS (Pussycat Track Safety). Passengers and staff have been encouraging Felix at the station. Her Facebook page has received hundreds of hits. Felix enjoys her job as do her friends - the feline’s clearly mutual.

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Hong Kong coup for Mechan Leading rail depot equipment specialist Mechan is powering up export trade with the far east. Mechan has secured two major orders from MTR in Hong Kong. The Sheffield-based manufacturer has delivered lifting jacks and bogie turntables to the Hong Kong’s rapid transit railway operator, MTR and is now building a bespoke bogie drop. Working with local agent, Associated Engineers, Mechan has supplied two dozen 20-tonne versions of its flagship jacks to the Wong Chuk Hang depot on the South Island and four turntables to transfer bogies between maintenance roads. Staff from Mechan have been working at the depot to oversee installation and training. The jacks, which are working in two sets of 12, are controlled by the firm’s patented Megalink system, allowing a synchronised lift to be managed by just one operator. A new emergency stop safety circuit was also designed and fitted to comply with Hong Kong’s stringent electrical regulations. A bogie drop for the Shek Kong Running Maintenance Shed is currently under construction that will incorporate a number of new design elements to meet MTR’s requests

for higher levels of automation and address the way the train is supported. Due to the ground conditions at this site, pit depth is limited and this too had to be overcome in the design.    Says Richard Carr, Mechan’s chief executive, ‘We have a longstanding, successful relationship with MTR spanning almost two decades and we are very pleased

the operator continues to source new depot lifting equipment from us. ‘Our jacks and turntables are now fully operational and after a long and complex planning stage, we are confident the bogie drop will follow suit before the end of the year.’ Exports currently account for more than 20 per cent of Mechan’s turnover and its products are used in 30 countries worldwide.

Mechan’s jacks installed at the Wong Chuk Hang depot in Hong Kong.

Ecclesiastical dive under comes out on top Parish priest Father Egerton Gbonda praised the work. ‘The beautiful painted walls sparked a ray of hope in me, that our vision to provide a safe space for young people to meet and learn life skills will soon be a reality. For a long time we have dreamed of having somewhere that the community can come together to discuss issues that matter to us and soon this will be realised.’ Says Network Rail project manager Greg Thornett, ‘Voluntary projects like this one are important to our employees and allow us to build strong relationships with the communities in which we work.

Over 40 volunteers from the Thameslink Programme, part of Network Rail, joined local community partners to transform disused space into somewhere for young people to socialise and undertake activities that will increase their skills and confidence.

Rail staff from Network Rail and Skanska, with local volunteers, renovated the basement and gardens of St Katharine with St Bartholomew’s Church, Southwark. The new space will help young people realise their potential and go on to contribute positively to the community.


‘We want residents to feel they have benefited from the presence of our project over the past three years, rather than be hindered by it. We have regularly volunteered with the XLP Youth Group on Silwood Street, as well as replanting the garden area of the Lewington Community Centre. The project at St Katharine with St Batholomew’s Church has successfully brought it all together.’ The nearby Bermondsey Dive Under (BDU) is an essential project which will untangle the tracks on the eastern approaches to London Bridge station as part of Network Rail’s Railway Upgrade Plan.

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Community rail crescendo

The Association of Community Rail Partnerships (ACoRP) has secured important new funding from the Department for Transport (DfT) and Arriva Rail North (ARN) which enabling it to expand and restructure. ACoRP 2.0 will be better equipped to help the changing face of the rail industry in future. The organisation will be split into two departments – Operations and Commercial, each led by a senior manager. Overall, the organisation will be headed up by a chief executive recruited from outside the current structure. After a handover period, longserving general manager Neil Buxton will leave the organisation and retire at the end of 2016. All other existing staff will remain with ACoRP in posts similar to those currently held. The charismatic leadership of Neil Buxton who emboldened and enlarged the community rail movement will be much missed. Says Neil, ‘In the last decade, ACoRP has grown considerably in stature and influence, and I’m proud to have contributed to that. However, to stay ahead of the game, the organisation needs younger, fresher minds to deal with the new challenges being presented to the community rail sector.  ‘Having been closely involved with the reorganisation since its inception, I firmly believe this is the way to go and I’m excited by the opportunities it will offer to improve our service delivery to both our membership and the wider rail industry.’ ACoRP chair Peter Roberts MBE confirmed that a series of new posts would be filled by January 2017.  ‘We have been aware, from comments made by our members, of the need to RAILSTAFF.UK | @RAILSTAFFUK | FACEBOOK.COM/RAILSTAFF

restructure our business for some time, and the new funding streams that have become available have provided us with a unique opportunity to achieve that. ‘We are grateful to both DfT and ARN for their co-operation and assistance in making this possible. We are sorry to part company with Neil, who has been a loyal and valued member of our team for 16 years, and our general manager for the last 11 years. However, as he approaches retirement, he has acknowledged that new leadership is best to take ACoRP forward into the future, and has assisted throughout the long process of bringing this to fruition.  ‘He will remain with us until the end of this year for a handover period while the new chief executive and other new post-

holders settle in. We are especially grateful to him for his leadership during a challenging period for both ACoRP and the rail industry in general.’ The organisation will continue to be based at The Old Water Tower at Huddersfield station, where office alterations will be undertaken to accommodate the new staff. Genial factotum Brian Barnsley becomes deputy chief executive and senior operations manager. Widely respected, Hazel Bonner, who has done much to pioneer a new movement, Women in Community Rail, becomes events and fundraising manager. Hard-working Dawn Wolrich becomes administration manager and the respected Martin Yallop becomes community stations development manager.












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Southport hosts Community Rail Awards ACoRP’s annual Community Rail Awards takes place at Southport overlooking the Irish Sea in the historic Floral Hall on Thursday, 29 September. The town with its legendary number of trees and wild sands is a fitting place to celebrate the turn of the tide in the fortunes of the community rail movement. Categories include team work, community engagement, passengers, small projects, diversity, art, outstanding contributions and a photo competition. Rail Media is sponsoring the ‘Involving Young People’ award. The Community Rail movement has a long history of working with young people on a wide array of projects and this new award seeks to recognise growing achievements in this field. The growth of the rail industry, new funding and current reforms are now further expanding the role of community rail, a success phenomenon in its own right. ACoRP continues to provide a

wealth of inspired stories about the men and women taking forward the community rail movement. Southport became popular with seaside visitors nearly 200 years ago. The town is remarkable for its many trees. Extensive tree planting was a pre-condition stipulated by the Hesketh family - local landowners who were persuaded to make land available for development in the 19th century. The Floral Hall was built in the 1930s and the Southport Theatre was added in 1973. Now one of Merseyside’s largest multipurpose venues after a £40 million investment, the complex has played host to Diana Ross, The Four Tops, Johnny Cash, Peter Kay and the Beatles. However, the main stars of the show on Thursday 29 September will be the men and women of the community rail movement and the staff and supporters of ACoRP - a unique and encouraging phenomenon of the new rail industry.

Train Guard Lucy Elliott with her ticket machine.

Last train to Sleaford The last Music Train of the summer was the best attended outing so far this year, reports community rail organiser Jayne Wingad. A record-breaking 101 passengers joined the Poacher Line at Sleaford in Lincolnshire to be serenaded by the Sleaford Ukulele Orchestra en route to Batemans Brewery at Wainfleet. Train guard Lucy Elliott welcomed the Music Train passengers and was praised for her professional expertise in ensuring all revellers had an accurate ticket. The Music Train is now in its 10th year and continues to gain popularity. Music Train winter events start in September with Itchy Fingers who play ragtime, country blues and western swing.

Open day at Water Tower ACoRP will be holding a heritage open day at its Water Tower headquarters in Huddersfield on Sunday, 11 September. Staff will once again be throwing the doors open to the public, encouraged by high levels of interest and rising attendance over the last few years.


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The importance of command and control It may seem strange to be discussing command and control in the context of the rail industry. However, whatever term is used, the need for effective control systems and people with the appropriate skills to use them to command dynamic potentially lifethreatening incidents cannot be overstated.

For a number of years the Emergency Planning College (EPC) has been working with the rail industry to develop and deliver a range of bespoke training courses. The EPC is a world renowned provider of training and development in the field of emergency planning and incident management. It also has considerable experience

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with crowd management and modelling which is used internationally to support the safe movement of large numbers of people. The EPC relies on the skills and experience of its trainers to work with client organisations to develop training programmes specifically to cater for their individual needs. Working closely with the rail industry, we have developed a number of different courses to enable people dealing at the scene of operations to quickly evaluate the situation, to develop an initial plan and - using the communications skills and systems contained within the course - pass that information quickly to the control centre and on to more senior managers. This development of an effective ‘command’ system, which follows closely the processes used by the United Kingdom emergency services, enables the specific elements of an emergency to be identified, prioritised, and dealt with in the safest and most efficient manner possible. The ability of our trainers to alter and develop current training programmes, to ensure that the latest thinking and strategies are incorporated, is due to the fact that they are all experienced former senior managers and commanders from the emergency services - including the fire and rescue service, the police service, and the British Transport Police.

This was evident recently following the advent of the Joint Emergency Services Interoperability Programme (JESIP) and the development of the new thinking and collaborative command processes that are now employed by the emergency services to deal with both minor and major incidents. All of the current programmes delivered to the rail industry contain this new thinking enabling managers on the ground at any rail incident to be able to understand the needs of their emergency service colleagues and to be able to work closely with them - creating a positive effective environment which enhances overall incident resolution. This makes a safer and faster incident conclusion possible. There are four main training programmes currently being delivered to the rail industry, these are:

Integrated Incident Development Workshop (IID) This programme is designed to enhance problem solving, leadership, management, and communication skills for first line managers who are first on the scene.

Rail Control Centre Training (RCCT) This one-day course is designed to develop control centre managers and to provide them with the necessary skills to assimilate and prioritise activity and information and pass this on to the rail incident commander.

Rail Incident Commander This two-day programme is designed to provide gold level strategic rail managers with the necessary tools to enable them to deal with gold level incidents.

The BRIC Exercise This is a half-day exercise programme that is designed to bring together the skills discussed during the RCCT course and the RIC programme. All of these different courses and programmes are designed to be organic and developed and altered to meet the needs of the customer and the changing environment that faces them.

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n experienced field of around 160 competitors arrived in Warwickshire last month in search of the catch that would net them a trophy at the 2016 RailSport National Angling Championship. Competitors cast off at 10am on 17 August across the vast Makins Fishery site in Wolvey, which has become the championship’s favoured venue in recent years. The bright summery weather, although pleasant for anglers, made for a difficult day’s fishing, but a couple of 100lb plus catches were recorded to clinch the top two positions. Kevin Melville of Network Rail, who regularly represents Great Britain in USIC angling events, won his second National Angling Championship title with a weight of 109lb. Darren Wayte, of Bridgeway Consulting, ran Kevin close but ultimately came up short with a weight of 103lb 5 oz. The full list of results can be found on the website.


Team effort Rather than being judged on weight, as is done in the individual tournament, the team competition uses a point system. Each member of the four-man team fishes in a separate section. The angler who catches the greatest weight in each section is awarded one point, with second receiving two points, third three points and fourth four. The scores are then added together and the lowest combined total wins. The overall weight is only taken into account in the event of a tie. Kevin, alongside David Dawber (Network Rail), Rob Dawber (Northern Rail) and Darren Smethhurst (Northern Rail), also took the winner’s trophy in the team competition ahead of LM Old Boys - Alan Wright, Dave Lewis, Terry Lancaster and Les Overmass - and Central Trains - Ian Winter, D. Siggars, Dave Lightowlers, Jim Clewes. Organised by Iarnród Éireann (Irish Rail) chief executive David Franks, the angling championship continues to be one of the most popular annual events on the RailSport calendar. Says David, ‘The event ran really well thanks to the super support of Alan McDiarmid, the fishery owner, and colleagues from RailSport who give up their own time to ensure the success of all RailSport events. ‘Well done too to all the winners with a special thank you to every competitor without whom the event would not take place. I look forward to seeing all the anglers again on 16 August 2017’

USIC Angling championship The presence of a team from RailSport Holland was a reminder of the international dimension the competition will take on next year. In September 2017, the six best anglers nationally will compete in the USIC Angling championship in Enniskillen, Northern Ireland. Great Britain has a winning reputation internationally. GB was triumphant in the first ever USIC Angling championship in 1972 and has won four championships in total - a record equalled only by France, which won the most recent championship hosted by the GB team at Makins Fishery in 2012. Of course, angling isn’t the only battleground for international RailSport competition. Euro Group events in the 10k road race in Bechovice, Czech Republic, between 23-26 September and table tennis in Berlin, Germany, between 17-22 October will complete the international fixtures for 2016. Inspired by Team GB’s Olympics medal rush? Visit to find out how to get involved in upcoming RailSport events, including the RailSport Games 2017.





'Well done too to all the winners with a special thank you to every competitor without whom the event would not take place'...

RAILSPORT UK NEED ONE TEAM MANAGER FOR BADMINTON AND ONE FOR FUTSAL Duties: Volunteer Management / Selection of teams A couple of 100lb plus catches were recorded to clinch the top two positions.

Applicants should: • have played the sport • have good knowledge of the rules • be presently working or retired from the UK Railway industry

Entitlement to staff travel facilities within European Railways an advantage For more info, contact: Cliff Robinson, Secretary Railsport GB. 9 Knoll Close, Littleover, Derby, DE23 3SG Tel 07757 923902

David Franks (left) with the winning team. Kevin Melville (far right) also won the individual competion.








34% of the world's driverless systems are in Europe.



© PriestmanGoode/TfL


reater automation through driverless trains is a ‘necessary evolution’ says Ramon Malla, director of automated lines at TMB Barcelona and chairman of the UITP Observatory of Automated Metros. It’s an evolution that, given time, can be delivered in coalition with the trade unions, he believes, as new research shows no slowdown in the spread of automated metro networks around the world. Figures published by UITP in July suggested that the growth of automated metro lines will quadruple within the next decade and that the combined length of the world’s driverless lines will almost triple. The research highlights the Middle East as one of the fastest growth areas, but it showed the popularity of driverless networks is increasing all around the world, with systems now also appearing in Latin America. The scale of some projects dwarf anything that has come before. For example, Riyadh Metro, which opens in 2019, will be double the size of Singapore’s current network - the city with the most kilometres of automated lines in 2016.

EARLY ENGAGEMENT Varying grades of automation are used on the UK’s metro lines and for a number of these new rolling stock and signalling will turn them into fully automated railways within the next decade. From the early 2020s, driverless trains will be in use on the Glasgow Subway and the New Tube for London programme will bring the first driverless Tube trains to the capital in the next 10 to 15 years. ‘Automation has been a constant feature in the evolution of metro and in general of the railway. Progress in driving with ATP and later with ATO systems has been a positive development for the sector,’ Ramon told RailStaff. ‘Full automation is one last step in this process where many aspects have already been automated.’





But as the five-day Southern strike in August over driver-only operation (DOO) demonstrated, the technology’s engineering challenges are only part of the battle. ‘They have generally eliminated more routine activity to concentrate on tasks with higher added value tasks. So it is a process of transformation that is not new for union relationship, it can be addressed normally if managed holistically, involving all parts in the change management. ‘The challenge for the operator is that knowing this process, they must prepare in advance.’

CHANGING ROLES By removing the element of human error, automated systems can claim to be safer and more efficient. Having fewer staff operating trains is also clearly cheaper, something the industry tries not to highlight too eagerly but does acknowledge. For the people currently carrying out these roles, automation is seen as a threat to their jobs. Having fewer trained staff on board can only degrade safety, they believe. Advocates of the technology say it leads to more rewarding roles for staff.

‘The operators of automated lines testify that these lines give more meaning to the work and enhance the status of the jobs triggering greater staff and customers’ satisfaction,’ said Ramon. ‘But they also agree that, to be successful, the new model requires a rethinking of management culture. While this is true for the success of new automated lines, it is even more crucial for the transformation of networks where conventional and automated lines coexist. Automation is an opportunity to become a motivational project for everyone working in the company.’

789 km automated lines worldwide.





2,200 km of automated metro by 2025.

PROFESSIONAL EVOLUTION Ramon went on to describe the ways in which the traditional driver role changes with the introduction of driverless technologies. ‘In general terms, operational staff in a full automated line acquire a deeper knowledge of all key systems, and a global overview on the functional interactions among them, allowing for professional evolution. In automated lines, operations staff tasks also evolve towards maintenance. ‘Two fields of activity separated in a traditional line merge, having a positive impact in the performance of the line and of course in the staff, which enjoy greater diversity in their tasks/job profile. ‘The nature of the tasks in an automated line calls for more human, proactive and efficient roles from the staff. They require being closer to the customer, and stronger cooperation among the staff as a team, which

result in job positions built on relationships, and therefore, more human.’ Thirty-six cities around the world now have at least one fully automated metro line. It will still be a long time before automated metros represent the majority of systems around the world, but that is the way things are going. Says Ramon, ‘When a city builds an automated metro line, it never opts for building subsequent lines in conventional, manual operation. Those who try, repeat.’ Neither the operator, the manufacturer or the unions wants to see a railway with no human input - nor do paying passengers. We’re in a driverless evolution, but the industry knows it needs to ensure that knowledgeable staff aren’t left feeling disenfranchised and unappreciated, but are involved and given the opportunity to move into the more interesting and challenging roles that automation promises.







It is now 15 years since the publication of the Ladbroke Grove Inquiry. I recommend a re-reading of Part 2 of that report. Chapter 5 is titled “The management and culture of safety”. Clause 5-11 quotes from evidence given by Mr Tunnecliffe one time Chief Executive of London Transport who said “I simply overwhelmingly believe that leadership is what gets things done”. In his evidence he went on to stress the importance of getting people to share visions so that they in turn work within their own areas of leadership to achieve similar visions. Clause 5-12 quotes from a report by DuPont Safety Resources produced for Railtrack in January 2000 which concluded that there was “no clear identification of safety leadership in the UK Rail Industry”. Mr Kooger from DuPont stated that written communications are very ineffective and said that management needed to be “forced out, walking the job, talking to people and listening to people”. I suggest that our rail industry still has a long way to go. Whilst I believe that management skills can be taught, leadership qualities are attributes of personality and attitude which are inherent but can be enhanced by training.

Just one second away Words like culture and human factors convey a distancing of management and more specifically leadership from those doing the work. Leaders in our industry should always put safety first and never put it aside in favour of keeping the railway


running (or even when disruption has occurred getting trains or trams running again). A reported near miss near Shawford at 1222 pm on June 24th this year illustrates this point. The trackworker had walked northwards from Shawcross Station trying to locate a reported track defect. He crossed the tracks and back again whilst using GPS equipment to help him find the defect. He stopped in the four-foot of the Down Fast line and was still distracted by his GPS as the Waterloo to Portsmouth Harbour train came round the bend towards him at 80 mph. At the last minute its driver saw him, sounded his horn and made an emergency brake application. According to the preliminary advice from the Rail Accident Investigation Branch (RAIB) based on the cab video, the trackworker moved clear just one second before the train passed him.

Neither the trackworker nor another team member reported the incident but the train driver did. The RAIB investigation will specifically consider why no protection was in place, how the work was planned and any “underlying management factors”.

A 28 mph collision The RAIB has issued its report into a freight train collision that occurred near Logan in East Ayrshire on August 1st last year. Around 11.11 am a train, whose driver had been authorised to enter a worksite at New Crummock Station, ran into the back of a stationary train at 28 mph. Engineering staff had authorised him to travel three miles and bring his train to stand behind the stationary one. He was unable to stop in time when he saw the other train on the 790 metres radius right hand curve. The report comments that, “an underlying cause was that drivers often do not comply with the rules that require movements within worksites to be made at speeds no greater than 5 mph or at caution”. The result was the derailment of seven wagons from the moving train and eleven plus the locomotive from the stationary one. There was substantial track damage with one of the derailed wagons coming to rest across a minor road. Although the Engineering Supervisor had attended a job briefing the PICOP (Person in Charge of Possession) had not.




Damage from freight train collision that occurred near Logan in East Ayrshire.

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A 21 mile long possession! The possession ran from New Crummock to Kilmarnock and also included the single line from Mauchline to Newton Junction. The first train had travelled a distance of 12 miles into the possession. Shift changes at 10.30 am included details of the six trains already in the worksite and their approximate locations. The moving train had travelled at speeds varying between 28 and 33 mph towards the stationary train. It braked 210 metres before impact and its emergency brake was applied 156 metres before the collision. Following the impact the train travelled a further 78 metres

before coming to rest. The 21 mile long possession included three signalling sections and the contractor had been required by Network Rail to extend the worksite from 39 miles to 51 miles and 941 yards so that they could do other work without setting up their own worksites with Engineering Supervisors.

Distracted and fatigued RAIB have also reported on an “overspeed” incident that occurred at 5-11 pm on September 11th 2015. The 2-45 pm Virgin East Coast passenger train went through Fletton Junction Peterborough at 51 mph.

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The Junction has a speed limit of 25 mph and was designed for 27 mph. The consequent lurching of the train resulted in injuries to a passenger and three staff. The report concludes that the driver “had forgotten the speed limit because he was distracted and fatigued due to issues relating to his family”. The report notes that the train operating company’s route risk assessment had not recognised the particular overspeeding risk of Fletton Junction and the speed restriction signs were smaller than required by the standard. There was a delay in reporting the incident to the RAIB. Having departed on time the train was delayed by 18 minutes approaching Darlington due to an earlier train failure. Consequently the train was diverted onto the Up Slow line to allow another train to overtake it at Peterborough. The report says that the driver was “trying to make up time”. He had been involved in another speeding incident on 12th July 2015 at Kinghorn in Scotland following which he told his manager about the effects of his home related stress. Report recommendations include, “encouraging drivers and their managers to have timely, open and honest discussions about driver’s personal circumstances and the operational

risks arising from personal problems”. I leave you to consider the balance of responsibility between driver and manager!

He selected the wrong handle On September 17th last year the 1055 Cambridge to Kings Cross service (4-car Class 317 EMU) ran into the buffer stops in Platform 11 at 1218. It was being driven by a trainee driver under supervision and hit the buffers at 7.5 mph. Fourteen passengers were injured and there was minor damage to both the buffer stops and the train. The report says that the instructor told the trainee when to apply the brakes but the trainee “selected the wrong control handle”. Although the instructor was an experienced driver he had not been trained to teach others. Unsurprisingly one of the recommendations relates to the training and management of driving instructors.

Langworth Lincolnshire Freight train derailment Last month I commented on Ian Prosser’s concerns about the level of understanding of track engineering amongst those responsible for its maintenance. His views I understand are shared by the RAIB.

At 2-15 pm on 30th June last year a freight train hauling 22 empty diesel tank wagons derailed on a track buckle as it passed through a series of switch and crossing units near Langworth. The locomotive and first ten wagons ran over the buckle, the eleventh and following nine derailed, four overturned and one came to rest across the adjacent track (see picture). Cranes were needed to recover six of the wagons and a temporary road had to be built. The buckle had started at the beginning of a track misalignment. The accident happened on what was the hottest day of the year up to that date. The report specifically comments in its recommendations on a “lack of appreciation of the vulnerability of track to buckling”; “under resourcing of the maintenance team, leading to continual reprioritisation and cancelling of maintenance tasks”. It identifies management oversight as a cause. The railway at Langworth is two-track with a 75 mph speed limit for passenger trains but 50 mph for freight. The report states that the Track Engineer had been in the job for 8 years and been assessed by Network Rail as “competent in a number of maintenance disciplines”.

Track safety responsibilities Inspections in August 2014 recorded insufficient ballast at 101B points and a Works Order to correct this was issued in March 2015. Maintenance staffing was for 22 including 6 for track inspections. Of 14 available posts only 9 were filled at the time of the derailment. The section planner was absent long term sick. The report quotes the Track Maintenance Engineer’s comment that “the team delivers what they can with the resources they have”. Remembering the pressures that can arise from my own experience I am left wondering at what point a track engineer would have imposed a speed restriction or closed the line as unsafe? On that same day three other track buckles were recorded at Cardiff, Worcester and Stowmarket. RAILSTAFF.UK | @RAILSTAFFUK | FACEBOOK.COM/RAILSTAFF

Trains running on unsupported rails at Baildon Between 1745 and 1750 hours on 7th June this year two passenger trains passed over a section of single line where part of the embankment had been washed away leaving between three and four metres of rail unsupported. The driver of the 1716 Bradford Foster Square to Ilkley train saw the washout at 1745 but was unable to stop so went over it at 45 mph. Rainfall had been heavy and a member of the public had seen it and reported the problem at 1625. Flooding had been reported elsewhere in the area. A track inspection was made but the washout was not found and the railway was re-opened at 50 mph. A second call was received from a member of the public who had seen the first train but it was too late for the call to prevent the second train passing over. The RAIB investigation is currently underway, although the incident was not reported to them until June 24th! To return briefly to Lord Cullen’s Report into Ladbroke Grove published back in 2001. For safety’s sake everyone needs to remember that it is leadership that gets things done not management records. The practice of good leadership means getting out there and listening and talking to the people doing the work. It should also mean ensuring that people feel able to speak of and discuss their concerns. To ensure the safety of the line track engineers in particular need to know that their engineering judgement will be supported when and if they consider it necessary to impose a speed restriction or block the line. Within the industry the current safety record is excellent, but the examples I have written about illustrate just how close we have been to a fatality. I recall the concept of work sites being introduced and as I recall the principle was to use work sites within possessions so that individuals carrying out work could protect, organise, take responsibility for and control individual jobs.


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Humble beginnings This year, City Surveys is sponsoring the Rail Person of the Year category at the RailStaff Awards. All companies have to start somewhere. For City Surveys - one of Network Rail’s trusted principal contractors, a multi-million pound turnover business - it began with a second-hand printer and a small loan to buy a single survey instrument. From just one employee in 2003, the company now employs 60 people out of three offices around the country. Services offered to the rail sector include track surveys and monitoring, ground investigations, ecology surveys and utility mapping. This year, City Surveys is sponsoring the Rail Person of the Year category at the RailStaff Awards. ‘The team has worked incredibly hard to achieve some pretty significant milestones over recent years, most notably our PCL and a framework agreement with Network Rail,’ said managing director Richard Furlong. ‘Through dedication and innovation, we intend to consolidate this relationship and continue to exceed our clients’ expectations on the railway infrastructure.’

Remarkable change In the 13 years since Richard acquired that first instrument and began work, the industry has moved on significantly. ‘The most remarkable change has been the technology,’ says Richard. ‘Instruments and software now allow large-scale mapping to be completed in a number of ways only dreamt of before. ‘From track-mounted scanning instruments to drones, the availability of innovative technology is changing the way we think about mapping the infrastructure as we strive to remove the person from harm’s way by reducing track time.’



Rail Person of the Year is a deliberately open category; it courts nominations for achievements that are hard to define or too numerous to narrow down. Last year, the award was presented to Bridgeway’s John Matheson. His nomination described a young man who, having joined the company as a labourer in 2010, had dedicated himself to gaining new qualifications and moving through the ranks. Though, no doubt, Bridgeway had nurtured his enthusiasm to study and improve, the award was recognition for the time he had dedicated and the sacrifices he would in turn have made.

Personal contributions ‘Whilst I fully appreciate that teams and organisations bid for, win and successfully manage projects, too often the individuals within those organisations - and their personal contributions and achievements - are overlooked,’ said Richard, asked about the focus the Awards gives to individual achievement. ‘Too often people take for granted that teams are made up of individuals rather than being a single entity. These individuals have their own stories and motivations, something that we as employers and managers should strive to recognise. ‘The rail sector as a whole should embrace and encourage these factors, publicly recognising achievement and allowing people to fulfil their ambitions. I believe that, by doing this, we will see improved job satisfaction and an improved quality of life for employees as well as significantly higher levels of innovation and productivity.’



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New blood This year, the Apprentice of the Year category is being sponsored by Gore and Ballyclare, which together have been supplying rail PPE products to the industry for the past 25 years.

The RailStaff Awards sells itself on variety. One moment a longserving employee can be receiving a lifetime achievement award for their rich, sometimes transformative, body of work; minutes later an apprentice who has spent less than a year in the industry can be standing on the same stage. This year, the Apprentice of the Year category is being sponsored by Gore and Ballyclare, which together have been supplying rail PPE products to the industry for the past 25 years. ‘There’s new blood coming to the rail market which is really exciting,’ says Maggie Shaw, sales manager at Ballyclare, explaining the company’s decision to back this year’s event.

Orange Army The Orange Army is the go-to term which has been adopted by Network Rail and the government when referring to the gangs of railway workers delivering repairs and improvements around the network. The trademark orange PPE is part of the railway’s identity. But of course it also plays a critically important safety function. It must achieve certain minimum standards and, for the wearer, it needs to be comfortable. ‘It gives procurement, HR and safety the biggest headache because it’s so personal to the individual,’ Maggie added. ‘Individuals can actually be out there for 12 hours in the rain, wind and snow. They’ve got to be kept dry, they’ve got to be kept warm.’



GORE-TEX® Fabrics has built its reputation on the combination of its waterproof and breathability qualities. Gore supplies technical textiles and laminates to Ballyclare who, as a licenced manufacturing partner, design and produce durable GORE-TEX® rail garments. Completed garments are tested to meet the EN 14360 standard. The testing process is rigorous. Using a purposebuilt rain tower, Gore is able to simulate realistic wet-weather conditions to put its products to the test. Gore Associate Jonas Andersson said the company was also keen to engage with end users, through events like the RailStaff Awards, to gather feedback which can inform the future research and development of its products. Says Jonas, ‘That direct dialogue with the people actually doing the job out there is really important for us.’

Back stronger Earlier this year, Ballyclare was re-appointed by Network Rail as its official PPE supplier. ‘This is a way of saying that we’re back,’ said Maggie.


‘We’re back stronger than ever.’ It was also a chance for the two companies to recognise those in industry who maybe don’t receive the thanks they deserve. Last year, the award went to an apprentice with the Costain/Skanska Joint Venture (CSJV) working on Crossrail, Ben Cox. ‘I think it’s nice for them to have some appreciation and it’s great when it’s an apprentice that’s new to the industry,’ says Maggie. ‘Nobody really sees what these guys actually do to make that repair or improvement to make sure that we all get from a to b.’



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Building a stronger workforce for the future The demand for experienced railway trainers is as high as it has ever been. People often refer back to inspirational teachers from their formative years when asked why they pursued a particular career path. Even for those who may have felt let down by their school education, there will be a trainer or mentor somewhere along the line who they owe some portion of their success too. The demand for experienced railway trainers is as high as it has ever been. This particular period of time, where around £40 billion has been earmarked for railway projects around the country, could even be described as exceptional. This year’s Trainer/Training Team of the Year category is being sponsored by Construction and Rail Training Ltd (CART) - a new NSARaccredited training and assessment company looking to become a leader in its field.

Solid foundation CART was established in 2015. The team, which have accumulated more than 40 years of experience within the rail and construction sectors, initially operated from a single site in Baldock, Hertfordshire. In just 12 months, the company has added a satellite training centre in Sheffield and is preparing to open a second in Essex. Alex Pedley, business development and funding director at CART, believes the company is well placed to meet the training needs of the industry during the current control period. ’Strategically placed, we are able to offer railway safety critical training and assessment, construction, health and safety training and OHL electrification training and have forged a solid foundation of quality operational and delivery staff to make this happen,’ says Alex. He went on, ‘The railway is currently delivering a £36 billion budget to enhance the daily operation and journey improvement times of all services across



its network and all within an ambitious five-year timescale with one of the largest investments in electrification, which brings fantastic opportunities for industry workers, training and commuters. ‘We can appreciate that training facilities can be somewhat of a challenge for a national reach of this but we believe that our partnerships through collaboration with leading industry providers will help suffice this need. ‘Offering training both commercially and through funded provision allows our customers a cost effective solution to their training requirements whilst maintaining their employee competence levels and building upon already attained skills. This is why we aim to offer skills support for the employed and apprenticeships within both sectors to allow our customers to build a better and stronger workforce for the future.’


Exceptional work In 2015, it was a team from Abellio Greater Anglia which won the Trainer/Training Team of the Year category for the successful implementation of a customer service training programme across the business. ‘In our field of work, we are all about two things: the quality of what we deliver and the people we are delivering to,’ says Alex. ‘We enjoy meeting and conversing with people of all walks of the railway life, and, engaging with more people will only help progress both the company as a whole and ourselves as professionals.’ He added, ‘We feel it is very important for the winners and those nominated to be recognised for the exceptional work they do. The RailStaff Awards is a fantastic platform for individuals and teams to be recognised for the work and dedication they put in to keeping the railway industry moving forwards.’



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A family affair Teams that form a strong bond often refer to themselves as a family. Hitachi’s Ashford train maintenance crew - the winners of the Depot Team of the Year category at last year’s RailStaff Awards would agree. Sometimes the term is completely accurate. It used to be common to follow members of your family on to the railway; it still happens today even if it is not as familiar a story. The railway relies on family ties and family-run businesses.

The family connection doesn’t stop there. Shane’s partner, Maggie, is the company’s accounts manager, his daughter Laura is the office manager and his youngest son, David, is the training and development manager.

Branching out

Valuable assets

Set up in 1995, Seaton Rail is managed by father-and-son team Shane and Matthew Seaton. The company, which is based in Bridlington, initially offered possession and works planning services, but in 2008 branched out, adding contingent labour supply, training and on track protection and warning services. Seaton Rail, an approved Rail Training Accreditation Scheme provider (RTAS) through the National Skills Academy for Rail (NSAR), is a member of the Association of Railway Training Providers (ARTP) and the British Safety Council. The business continues to add and expand its activities in the sector. In June, the company announced it had received its accreditation to provide drugs and alcohol screening services. A former British Rail signalling and telecommunications engineer, Shane took voluntary redundancy in the mid-1990s to establish the company, which is sponsoring the Depot Team of the Year category for 2016. Depot Team of the Year is the only category which specifically sets out to reward the hard-working teams that strive to ensure the reliability of the trains and maintenance vehicles that operate across Britain’s rail network. As well as his role as managing director, Shane is also the company’s compliance manager, which involves doing the inductions for new staff, delivering training sessions, distributing safety bulletins and chairing safety meetings. His son, Matt, followed him into the industry and is now Seaton Rail’s director of operations - a role that involves managing the allocation of staff and working with clients to plan projects.

A significant chunk of Shane’s time is spent developing new and existing staff. He has recently trained three new trainers for the business who he hopes will soon gain their NSAR accreditation to deliver track safety training. Seaton Rail initially specialised in planning projects and would use a third party labour supply agency to carry out the work. The company has now taken that element in-house - it currently employs around 100 sponsored staff as well as 27 full-time employees. Shane says this gives the company a better




understanding of his workforce - what they are trained and equipped to do - and avoids scenarios in which works have to be cancelled because the technicians that have turned up on site aren’t able to carry out the required tasks. ‘Recognising and rewarding staff is essential’, says Shane. Seaton Rail won’t be using the evening to entertain clients, instead members of frontline staff have been invited to attend. ‘Our employees are a valuable asset to us and how they perform makes a big difference to our business,’ said Shane.



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SNC-Lavalin flying the flag for rail managers 2016 has been a big year for us says SNC-Lavalin managing director Richard George

In the company’s own words, it has been a year of transition. On 1 January 2016, the Derby-based engineering consultancy Interfleet became SNC-Lavalin Rail & Transit after assuming the name of the company that acquired it back in 2011. RailStaff spoke to Richard earlier this year. He had initially been anxious about what impact the re-branding could have on the company, but was subsequently buoyed by the early reaction. ‘Around the world the profile has now changed and that will take time to come through, but it certainly has not done us any damage at all and there are some opportunities that have been opened up as a consequence.’ SNC-Lavalin has continued to publicise its new image over the last few months, as it looks to grow its technical capability and workforce in the UK and overseas. This month we can announce that SNC-Lavalin is sponsoring this year’s RailStaff Awards Rail Manager of the Year category. A traditionally well-contested category, the trophy was presented to Heathrow Express’ Brian Keenan last year after he saved the life of a passenger. Below, Richard explains why the company is supporting this year’s event and what value he believes it brings to the industry. Q: Why are you supporting the awards this year and specifically what drew you to the Rail Manager of the Year category? 2016 has been a big year for us - as it kicked off with our re-brand adopting the name of our owning company SNC-Lavalin has given us the opportunity to go out and wave the flag a bit more than we might have done in other years. But as always, it’s also been a big year for the rail industry as a whole, with many things keeping us in the news. The challenges of railways always take good management; we wanted to celebrate this, and sponsoring Rail Manager of the Year seemed like a good way to do so.



Q: Do you feel it is important to have an event in the calendar which recognises individuals in the rail industry rather than companies? Absolutely. Our business is firmly grounded in the experience of our staff. It is their combined skills and experience which make us a leader in our field. Each company - no matter what size - is made up of individuals, and it’s important to recognise this. At the end of the day, people do business with other people. Q: In terms of retention and development, how important do you feel this sort of recognition is for staff? Very important. We hold our own employee recognition awards internally, as part of our Great Place to Work initiative. Since introducing this scheme,


we’ve seen staff retention improve and satisfaction levels increase. I think it’s fantastic that the RailStaff Awards do this on a bigger scale, on behalf of the entire industry. Q: The RailStaff Awards bring together people from all different kinds of rail industry roles. Is there value in bringing together people in the industry who probably have very little interaction with one another normally? Yes, 100 per cent. Occasions like this provide a great opportunity to network, meet new people and catch up with familiar faces that you haven’t seen in a while. Obviously it’s a social event so it’s not all about ‘talking shop’, but there will be lots of guests sharing experiences and swapping stories; and that is invaluable.



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What it's all about Coyle Rail is sponsoring the Rail Team of the Year category at this year's RailStaff Awards.

‘It’s all about teamwork isn’t it,’ says Roger Stewart, a director at Coyle Personnel, one of the largest suppliers of contingent labour to Britain’s rail industry. For a company that is a primary sponsor for around 900 staff, you can understand why teamwork is so important. As well as its 900 or so sponsored staff, Coyle Personnel employs teams of full-time management and administrative staff at 10 offices around the country: Harrow, Walsall, Cardiff, Central London, Chelmsford, Glasgow, Ashford, Reading, York and Manchester. Coyle Personnel was incorporated in 1988. The company had initially specialised in construction labour before building a presence in the rail industry. Now a supplier of electrification and plant works (E&P) and signalling contingent labour to Network Rail, Coyle Rail has grown into a £50 million turnover business, supplying some of the biggest names in the fields of signalling, electrification and rolling stock.

many trained to engineering supervisor (ES), person in charge of possession (PICOP) or machine controller levels. ‘The reward for the guys is being treated fairly,’ says Roger.

Reward Last year, a team from Knutsford station in Cheshire took home the Rail Team of the Year trophy. They had received

Retention The shortage and subsequent demand for engineering skills has put a strain on the industry. The reasons are diverse. ‘It’s the work patterns that is the biggest problem,’ says Roger. ‘Construction in the South East is growing so a lot of people have left the rail industry.’ Coyle Rail, like many other companies, is looking at the training it offers to bring new entrants to the industry, but retention of existing staff is equally important. More than 500 of Coyle Rail’s sponsored staff have been with the business for 10 years or more. ‘I know both sides of the coin,’ says Roger, who began his own career as a track worker. In fact, many of the company’s managers dotted around the country have some form of practical railway experience, with




various glowing reports detailing the ways in which they had worked to improve the station for passengers and the community. Says Roger, ‘It’s good to reward people whether it’s for the office or for the workers themselves.’ He added, ‘It’s all about teamwork isn’t it. To work in the industry we work in, it’s got to be down to teamwork.’



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he recent Digital Rail Summit, organised by Rail Media at Addleshaw Goddard’s impressive facility near London’s Barbican and sponsored by digital imaging specialists Hanwha Techwin, examined the whole topic of the future digital railway. Experts in their fields, including the DfT, Network Rail Digital Railway, London Underground, RSSB and suppliers, explained what is being planned, when it will be implemented and how it will affect everyone involved in the railway today.


The British rail network carries twice as many passengers as it did just two decades ago, but demand is projected to rise dramatically in the years ahead. The major initiative to address the capacity constraint is to digitalise the railway. This will enable more trains to run on existing tracks, safer, faster and more economically, complementing the additional capacity increases from new railways. But exploiting digital technology is not just about additional capacity. New technology and ways of working will have the same, if not a greater, impact on the whole industry. This includes an enhanced passenger experience that will commence from considering a journey, through the station and platform experience, to on-board. Digital rail will bring a wealth of new thinking from the supply chain as the industry exploits what is possible without the constraints of old technology. With the fastest growing network in Europe, many key routes are overcrowded, not just in London but in cities like Birmingham, Manchester, Leeds, Newcastle, Glasgow and Edinburgh, where peak-time travel is already standing room only. If passenger growth in the next twenty years matches that experienced over the last 20, there will be a billion extra journeys by 2035. At the same time, the network needs more space for freight trains, which now travel 600,000 miles a year and carry 75 per cent more consumer goods than they did in 2005.


Traditional options cannot deliver on the scale the economy demands. While schemes like Crossrail and HS2 are vital to help meet this need in key economic hotspots, traditional options such as building new tracks or extending trains and platforms will not, on their own, deliver the space for extra trains we need across the network.


The concept of railway fixed-block signalling has not really changed in over 100 years. Yes, colour light signalling with auto sections has replaced semaphore signalling (but not everywhere) and track circuit block has supplemented absolute block. Signalling control areas have become larger, but the method of fixed-block signalling is a constraint on running more trains over the network. While digital electronic interlocking systems have been used since the 1980s, and digital electronic telecommunication systems since 1966, there are many mechanical signal boxes still in use. The oldest was installed at Monks Sidings near Warrington in 1875. Skilled staff to service and maintain this technology is becoming scarce, but it is somewhat ironic that relay and early electronic signal boxes installed in the last 20 to 40 years are even more of a concern from an asset maintenance perspective. European Train Control System (ETCS), together with GSM-R and traffic management, form the European Train Management System (ERTMS). This tried-and-tested system will replace traditional railway signals with a computer display inside every train cab, reducing the costs of maintaining the railway, improving performance and enhancing safety. ERTMS is now in service on the Cambrian route, is providing excellent performance and is well received by the train crew.

WHY THE DIGITAL RAILWAY? The challenge is unlocking the growth potential of rail. The ambitious programme of railway investment is at a record high: £38 billion between 2015 and 2019. Demand, however, continues to grow, outpacing capacity. Keeping up with demand is key to economic growth.





New methods and technology in other transport sectors have provided dramatic results. For example, TfL has increased capacity by up to 40 per cent, Heathrow airport by 60 per cent and smart motorways by 80 per cent. Rail simply needs to do the same, while improving the passenger experience.

DON’T FORGET THE PASSENGER Passengers require three fundamental things; affordability, reliability and no overcrowding. They don’t understand (or need to know) what digital rail means, so digital needs to be explained as providing solutions to these three requirements while, at the same time, improving the journey experience with simpler ticketing, information and infotainment. The supply chain is the key to the success of digital rail. Ideally, it needs certainty in the plans for the future, but the base requirement is to have confidence in the planning, visibility of the road map, and to see the momentum being maintained. System engineering is another key element, with a far wider scope than ever before with digital parameters affecting many disciplines and assets in different ways, but the supply industry is well-placed for the challenge. Brexit will provide challenges and risks, but also benefits. Will the large signalling suppliers still invest in the UK? Will there be more opportunity for smaller companies to prosper and innovate? Could CBTC provide solutions for captive parts of the network? Cyber Security is a risk to be managed in digital rail, but it is clear the rail community is now well on board with what is required and is learning fast from other control system industries. Rail is an exciting place to be. Other industries would just love the problem of how to deal with significant growth. It just needs to get on with plans to deliver tomorrow’s railway.

In some of our major cities, one in eight people commute by train. Enabling future growth through conventional upgrades alone would be too costly, slow, and disruptive and, on many routes, not possible at all. Therefore, improving utilisation of the existing network is the most economically viable solution to deliver a fast-growing railway. ERTMS will offer a host of benefits to the railway and the application of the technology will spell the end for traditional signalling. Instead of lineside signals, a computer in the driver’s cab controls the speed and movement of the train, whilst taking account of other trains on the railway. By bringing the control system inside each individual train, ERTMS allows specific customised control. This allows the drivers to always run at the optimum safe speed helping more trains to run faster and recover from delays more quickly. Installing ERTMS across the country as signalling becomes lifeexpired will save an estimated 40 per cent over conventional systems. Each train will run at an appropriate safe speed, allowing more trains onto the tracks. ERTMS will improve train performance and reduce energy consumption. Communications-based train control (CBTC) is similar to ERTMS, but is manufacturer-specific rather than being a standard of interoperable systems. Using CBTC technology, metros and other railway systems such as Transport for London (TfL) have improved headways from typically 27 to 36 trains per hour, while maintaining and improving safety and performance. At the same time, digital technology has dramatically improved the customer experience with ticketing and train information. There is concern from some quarters that the claimed capacity improvements from ERTMS may not be realised on all parts of the network, particularly without level 3, which is still some way off. Level 3 will, however, provide further savings with fewer trackside assets. The traffic management part of ERTMS will provide the ‘most bang for your buck’ and should be a priority within the digital programme.

ASSURED is knowing your surveillance system has NetworkRail PADS certification











he Brexit vote has triggered debate across all sectors and businesses in Britain. With so many articles and blog posts with differing theories about its impact, it’s like the run-up to the referendum all over again: a lot of alarming claims but little substance. A recurring topic in terms of the potential knock-on effect to the rail industry is technical standards - an area in which EU legislation has sought to create greater harmony across the continent over the decades. No longer bound by European technical specifications, Britain could rewrite the rulebook and build new railways how it wants. This is an extreme interpretation which some engineers believe would amount to throwing the baby out with the bathwater. That’s certainly the view of Stuart Gough, the man tasked with expanding the activities of the Network Certification Body (NCB) - an independent subsidiary of Network Rail which provides conformity and assessment services to the rail industry. NCB has been involved in projects like Borders Railway, Reading station and the Edinburgh Glasgow Improvement Programme (EGIP). Stuart moved to NCB almost a year ago. Prior to that he had worked within Network Rail, joining the organisation from the power industry, where he had spent the previous eight years. He sees lots of similarities between the two sectors. ‘People need to commute, people need power to do it, and to live and to prosper.’


AN EVOLUTION IN STANDARDS NCB’s core business is ensuring new products and infrastructure comply with technical specifications for interoperability (TSIs). These TSIs were established to create a standardised European railway which would make it easier for operators to run cross-border trains and for manufacturers to export products around the continent. It was NCB which did the conformance testing for the UK’s first interoperable electrification project: phase one of the North West electrification programme between Manchester and Newton-le-Willows. What we may see over the next few years is an ‘evolution’ in Britain’s technical standards, Stuart believes, but with the forethought not to throw out any positive European imports. ‘I think the UK recognises the value in what European legislation is trying to achieve in terms of opening up the transport network,’ says Stuart. ‘I don’t see why the UK shouldn't want to be part of that still.’

NCB was launched in 2012 in order to create an independent unit for what had been Network Rail’s internal certification faculty. It was a ‘recognition that the landscape was changing’ says Stuart. ‘A recognition that for Network Rail to continue what it was doing it couldn’t do it as an internal organisation.’ Before Brexit, NCB was targeting growth in the market. ‘It’s very much business as usual,’ says Stuart, setting out the company’s plans. Its connection with Network Rail means it is viewed primarily as an infrastructure business. One goal is to expand its services in the rail vehicles market. But NCB also has aspirations to win clients overseas and play a part in the delivery of Britain’s new high-speed railway, HS2.




Stuart Gough.

To realise its ambitions, NCB is adding to its workforce. The company currently employs 53 people; by the end of the financial year, it expects that figure to be around 60. NCB says it wants to enhance the careers of experienced engineers but also develop new engineers for the industry. ‘Our projects and our customers expect a high level of expertise on their projects,’ says Stuart. ‘For our recruitment strategy, we recognise the value of attracting not only experienced engineers but the diversity of bringing engineers from outside the industry. We also see our role to develop aspiring engineers and that’s an important part of our support to the wider industry.’ Last month, NCB announced that it is now an accredited Plant Assessment Body (PAB). The new accreditation replaced the Vehicle Acceptance Body (VAB) process and this represents new opportunities for NCB. In terms of passenger rail vehicles, NCB was appointed last year as the assessment body to oversee manufacture of the new fleet of AT200 Hitachi EMUs for Abellio ScotRail. Further indications of the company’s plans to play more of a role in rail vehicle conformance. NCB was created to address a need within the industry, Stuart explains. ‘The important thing is to recognise that the market is growing.’ He went on, ‘We’re here to better the rail industry. It’s about collaboration and the expertise of our engineers is more important than ever in that regard.’ FACEBOOK.COM/RAILSTAFF | @RAILSTAFFUK | RAILSTAFF.UK




High ambition for Haigh Rail Limited


hris Haigh, founder and managing director of Haigh Rail Limited, has been making ambitious leaps in his career ever since he started working in the rail industry as a trainee. Now he’s channeling this ambition into Haigh Rail, and the company’s resulting growth doesn’t look to be slowing down any time soon. Born in Huddersfield 34 years ago, but raised in Preston, Chris set his sights on a career in construction from an early age. His first interview for a role as a trainee engineer raised the question: ‘Would working on the railways suit you?’ The answer was a resounding yes. In 1998, he joined Centrac (now Carillion) as a trainee technical engineer. Here, he gained a BTEC in civil engineering and invaluable on-the-job training. He was soon promoted to Track Renewals supervisor, a role which saw him delivering major projects on the West Coast Main Line, before continuing his already impressive career with major rail companies such as Babcock Rail and Network Rail. While working for the managing authority of the UK’s infrastructure network, Chris was the contractor’s responsible engineer for track works on the Water Orton and Walsall re-signalling projects. He had overall responsibility for the day-to-day management of all works including cost/budget, planning, safety, compliance, delivery and handback of these works. He also managed the production of CPP, WPP and task briefs, staff inductions and safety tours. Gaining all of this experience at a relatively young age fuelled Chris’s passion for the rail industry, and boosted his aspirations to build on his experiences with these rail infrastructure giants through the tailored and flexible service offering that only a smaller rail infrastructure contractor can provide. RAILSTAFF.UK | @RAILSTAFFUK | FACEBOOK.COM/RAILSTAFF

AMBITIOUS PLANS In 2011, Haigh Rail Limited was established to fulfil the industry’s need for a provider that delivers on skills, mobilisation, experience and cost efficiency – something which larger rail contractors are often unable to do. Utilising his excellent leadership skills and industry partnerships, Chris was able to assemble a team of industry professionals to undertake welding and permanent way projects for large rail companies and blue chip clients, delivering quality in the most efficient way possible. Haigh Rail has seen huge growth since it was founded, and Chris’s ambitious plans for the company show no sign of waning. Last year, the company increased its service provision capability with the addition of a welding division, based in Doncaster, which has created new business opportunities both with new clients and an increased offering for existing clients. The company’s success has spurred a move into their new head office in Bamber Bridge, a modern, open-plan space which has already seen huge improvements in the team’s efficiency and output, which has enabled Chris to look optimistically to Haigh Rail’s future. As a man used to spending his working days on the country’s railways – winter or summer, rain or shine – Chris also likes to spend much of his spare time outdoors. Pursuits such as fishing, shooting and taking his dog on walks keep him active, as do regular trips to the gym. Chris has two older sons, and the birth of his baby daughter in May this year has placed new demands on his time.

HAULAGE DIVISION Looking to the future of Haigh Rail and its ever-growing provision, Chris has been working tirelessly over the summer to secure the final details of the company’s forthcoming

haulage division, set to be up and running in October. A new Scania truck is being modified with a specialist body, which includes a 40 tonne/metre Effer crane which is able to carry RRV trailers in its rail gauge running rails. It has a purpose-built, removable rail-carrying frame that can transport 8 x 60-foot rails. The truck features a twin sleeper cab, a Euro 6 engine and Beaver tail fold flat ramps, providing plant access and all the latest industry safety systems. The significant investment in a fully compliant Scania truck that can operate both for the rail industry and in a non-rail capacity will allow Haigh Rail to diversify its service offering, proving that good things really do come in small packages. As has been clear from early in his career, Chris never tires of trying to find ways to improve the rail industry, and this drive has found a perfect outlet in Haigh Rail. The addition of welding and haulage divisions won’t be the end of the business’s growth, with supplementary plans already in the planning stage, and other goals in the pipeline. One sure sign of this is a Provisional Principal Contractor's License, received on 25th August.


We need your expertise We are currently looking for skilled engineers with experience in rail infrastructure and vehicle projects, to help us deliver exceptional service in a rapidly developing sector. Network Certification Body (NCB) is supporting some of the biggest rail projects both in the UK and overseas. The expertise of our engineers assess whether rail projects are fit to tackle the challenges of our rapidly developing networks. Successful candidates can expect a rewarding future participating in some of the most significant rail projects, developing skills amongst some of the most notable experts in the field. Want to hear more?

Visit or email for further details.






his month sees the start of the new academic year, and with it comes the promise of fresh opportunities for the Young Rail Professionals (YRP) and the young people it seeks to promote, inspire and develop. With this in mind, September is the month we have chosen to launch our fantastic, newly revamped website! PAULEY (Interactive) has long been a supporter of the rail industry and kindly offered, free of charge, to undertake a facelift of the website and back-office system. With YRP regularly receiving feedback from our web page users regarding the functionality and accessibility of the page, the upgrade of this has been a main priority of this year’s chair’s office. YRP chairwoman Sabrina Ihaddaden said of the facelift, ‘We are very pleased to see our website rejuvenated and mobile-friendly thanks to the hard work done by PAULEY (Interactive). It was a pleasure working with them.’

MODERN FACE OF THE INDUSTRY A massive thanks to PAULEY (Interactive) for their contribution to Young Rail Professionals across the country - ease of use and accessibility to relevant careers and schools information is one of the most important facets of our website. Communication is how we reach out to young people to encourage them to join the industry. When young people can access our content more easily, with an attractive interface, we can deliver our message far more effectively, and continue our efforts to bridge the skills gap in the rail industry. Our new website shows off the modern face of the industry, and we are delighted to launch in time for the new academic year. The support PAULEY (Interactive) has provided to young people in the industry is remarkable, with company director Phil Pauley stating, ‘We looked at this webpage and saw room for improvement, and with this in mind offered our services to the Young Rail Professionals. ‘They are a fantastic bunch of young people working hard to deliver benefits to the rail industry, and we at PAULEY (Interactive) are delighted to support these endeavours through providing them with a cutting-edge and mobile-friendly platform to engage their key audience.’


INTO RAIL The new website will feature information on one of our key delivery programmes, ‘Into Rail’ - the rail industry’s university engagement programme. As the delivery partner of ‘Into Rail’, YRP aim to engage as many university students as possible to address the growing skills gap, improve diversity and inspire young engineers to choose a career in rail. George Chilcott, strategic lead of ‘Into Rail’, and a systems development engineer at global professional services consultancy WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff, said, ‘2015 saw an enormous expansion of YRP’s university engagement initiative. We are now improving further the programme with a complete rebrand from Routes into Rail University Presentations Programme (RiRUPP) to ‘Into Rail’ with a renewed focus on promoting the industry via presentations from YRP Ambassadors at schools for instance, as cutting-edge, aspirational and full of fantastic opportunities for the brightest graduates. ‘We are proud of the work accomplished by all the volunteer YRP Ambassadors who enthusiastically inspire students to consider a career in rail, and of the ‘Into Rail’ team for being committed to enabling their success.’ Cross-industry cooperation is essential to the success of ‘Into Rail’. Finance and governance is directed by Routes into Rail, a collaborative group comprising of nine professional institutions, including the National Skills Academy for Rail (NSAR) and several other major rail employers such as Network Rail and TfL; brand design and identity guidance is provided by branding agency Sheerman Blunt; and presentation and promotional material development is delivered by WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff. In addition to delivering presentations to universities, ‘Into Rail’ has teamed up with NSAR to support the delivery of a pioneering placement


brokering service. The web-based platform, called NSAR-CONNECT, seeks to connect university students (as well as apprentices and graduates) with rail industry placements, intelligently assigning candidates to suitable roles. We are delighted to be working with NSAR on this initiative, reinforcing the ability of ‘Into Rail’ to attract aspiring engineers into the industry and at YRP, we are looking forward to promoting this service through our new website and via our YRP Ambassadors.

CONTINUING PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT Also, just in time for the new academic year, YRP are delighted to announce its accreditation via the Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Certification Service. We are now be able to offer CPD certificates to our members for attending certain professional development activities we run, such as workshops, seminars, conferences, events and training courses. We believe CPD certificates are a fantastic way to reward our members for taking the time to develop their skills and knowledge through YRP,

and provide evidence to both employers and professional bodies of their commitment to development and professionalism. CPD forms an integral part of the expected requirements to meet a number of professional standards across a whole range of disciplines: for example, those set out by UK-SPEC to attain recognition as EngTech, IEng or CEng. Over the coming year, each region will be hosting at least one CPD accredited event. In this way, we hope to allow as many of our members as possible to benefit from our events. Sabrina Ihaddaden, YRP National Chair says: ‘This is a fantastic milestone for YRP, and demonstrates that we are able to deliver quality development events, across the country. Well done to the team!’ The new website will be instrumental in providing the support to YRP members to gain their CPD certificate, so at YRP we would like to say a wholehearted thank you to Phil Pauley and the PAULEY (Interactive) team for their continued support of YRP and their delivery partners, through their assistance and input to our website design.



As the delivery partner of 'Into Rail', YRP aim to engage as many university students as possible to address the growing skills gap, improve diversity and inspire young engineers to choose a career in rail.

New to the industry?


Let us welcome you to our network! Our exclusive events for new starters in the rail industry will be taking place across the country this September and October. Come along to learn more about the YRP and the events and opportunities we can offer you; to be inspired by industry experts; and to meet the other people who will be helping you shape the future of rail.

Find an event near you and book at:





1,000 HOURS AND COUNTING T he Association of Railway Training Providers (ARTP) is proud to announce the recognition of the 1,000th hour of continuing professional development (CPD) achieved by railway trainers and assessors and delivered by the association. The rail industry is in a constant state of change, with the introduction of new technology, processes and thinking. There is a need for more cross-industry training programmes, creating broader opportunities and strengthening career paths across the sector. Railway trainers and assessors are at the forefront in the promotion of these changes to frontline staff. But who trains the trainer? In order to continue to provide a great service to their clients, trainers and assessors also need to undertake their own development to keep up to date with these changes, as well as extending their knowledge of educational theory. ARTP leads the way in supporting its members, and to achieve this, for the past 18 months, has invested in the development of activities which meet the criteria for a valued CPD scheme.

'ARTP has provided us with CPD opportunities, industry updates, workshops, networking & support and an excellent platform for collaboration within our sector. I would highly recommend ARTP membership to any railway training organisations.' QTS Training TRAIN THE TRAINER It is not always easy to train the trainer but members have responded in great numbers to the opportunities offered by the ARTP. These opportunities have included face-to-face training events on inspirational delivery, webinars and networking meetings. Members have shared experience and best practice at Special Interest Group meetings and worked with Network Rail to improve the training delivered. However, it was also recognised that time is valuable and with its members spread far and wide across the country, a range of distance learning packages have also been developed. These include subjects such as motivational theory and emotional intelligence. Trainers and assessors have been able to utilise the skills developed from this learning in order to improve the experience for the delegates attending their training events. Every CPD activity is rewarded with a CPD certificate issued directly to the trainer or assessor. Since its introduction in January 2015, 140 members from 58 different training and assessment providers have completed development. Nick Smith from OLE Training was recently awarded a CPD certificate, which recognised the 1,000th hour of CPD activity delivered to ARTP members since January 2015. RAILSTAFF.UK | @RAILSTAFFUK | FACEBOOK.COM/RAILSTAFF

HISTORY OF ARTP For over 20 years, ARTP has been providing support to training and assessment providers within the rail industry giving them a united voice, during a period which has seen constant and significant change. This ability to adapt has continued to the present day, with the focus on collaboration with Network Rail and major suppliers. The key ARTP aim is to support training and assessment providers in rising to the challenges, so they can support the rail industry through delivery of outstanding training and assessment services. Training and assessment providers have embraced the opportunities presented over the past few years, including the introduction of e-learning, ongoing improvements to Sentinel and track safety training. This, coupled with the rapid changes in technology and processes within the industry, has provided new challenges in maintaining knowledge and understanding of working practices both with Network Rail and major clients.




PRESIDENTIAL APPOINTMENT The ARTP board has also recently announced the appointment of Don Clarke as president of the Association. Don’s experience as a previous approved rail training provider managing director and owner and his wide industry connections, including current links with RICA, RISQS and CIRAS, will provide guidance and support to both the board and ARTP members. The ARTP continues to forge links with other rail organisations to ensure collaboration, so whenever changes are identified, the training community has a valuable contribution to make. The issue of a monthly newsletter allows busy trainers and assessors to keep up to speed with developments in our ever-changing industry. If you are interested in finding out more about the Association or to discuss becoming a member or require any information on current ARTP initiatives then please contact

Recent changes to the NSAR accreditation frameworks have challenged training and assessment providers to review their own working practices, ensuring continuous improvement and compliance. These challenges are best met by collaboration, and the ability to network through the ARTP has proved to be of great benefit. Members have been able to share concerns and resolve issues at the Special Interest Group meetings. Feedback from the ARTP membership identified their need for support in developing and delivering CPD for trainers and assessors. The ARTP introduced its CPD programme in response to this need, and this programme has already provided training sessions on communication skills, distance learning packs, quarterly CPD Journals, OLE conferences and webinars.

Don Clarke, president, ARTP.





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ensuring its learners receive an outstanding level of training and development. We are determined to raise the status of skills based learning and training – wrapping employability skills around its core programmes within an initiative for all learners. Our training suites and models are designed to industry standards and include an impressive array of facilities and training aids that allows learners to experience and develop their knowledge of railway equipment.   Take advantage of our 10 per cent discount by quoting MDASEPT1. This is valid for bookings made before 31 October 2016.







cot-Train offers quality-focused, comprehensive training and development services for a variety of skills and qualifications. We have over three decades of group experience in the rail industry, with a deep understanding of the best approach to training for this high-risk sector. As an NSAR (National Skills Academy for Rail) approved and Network Rail licensed training company, Scot-Train is a one-stop facility for all rail courses, from Personal Track Safety (PTS) training up to Senior Person in Charge of Possession (SPICOP) training. Training and management development courses can be designed to meet clients’ requirements, and we also carry out assessments and mentoring for all grades and skills. We provide on and off-site training, with SWGR offices located nationwide. Our Glasgow rail training site has all the facilities needed to carry out rail courses to the highest possible standard, and we even have a non-operational training track in our depot – one of only three such bespoke tracks in Scotland. Our one-stop facility also has a purpose-built medical centre, offering occupational health services such as pre-employment medicals and drug and alcohol checks, providing you with everything you need to get on track.

A one-stop facility for advancement in rail Rated outstanding by the National Skills Academy for Railway, we provide training, mentoring and assessments for all rail courses, from PTS to SPICOP training. Our dedicated training facility in Glasgow has everything you need to master vital skills, and we also provide occupational health services such as pre-employment medicals and drug and alcohol testing.

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Call Lorika Proudman on 01664 668 120 for more information


The main business focus for OLE Consulting Ltd has been mainly overhead line construction training to assist and support the UK railway industry during a period of unprecedented investment in electrification projects. This will also include Isolation planning and delivery (Authorised & Nominated Person). Whilst the name of the company suggests OLE training and assessing, the company actually does much more. Rail plant, associated with OLE construction, is a massive part of training, and also track safety competencies and DC lines assessments. OLE Consulting has a wide client base nationally and in March and August 2016 were invited and undertook training of OLEC 1, 2 & 3 in Australia and New Zealand. Our flexibility in being able to train at our client’s locations

ensures costs are kept to a minimum, making OLE Consulting extremely competitive in the training and assessing market. The four full-time trainers currently employed, who have over 140 years of rail experience, are used to great effect to assist learning on courses. There is a wide knowledge base amongst the trainers to choose from to assist all learners.




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ESTABLISHED PROVIDER RAIL WELDER TRAINING COURSES Railtech and Thermit aluminothermic. ELECTRIC ARC WELDING COURSES MMA and FCAW. TRACK SAFETY COURSES PTS, Lookout, SWL and COSS, NWR Engineering Plain Line Maintenance, S&C Maintenance, 1054 and 0053 inspections and Off Track Asset Drainage.

CALL OR EMAIL FOR MORE INFORMATION T// 01622 854732 / 850129 E// Ashmill Business Park, Ashford Rd, Lenham, Kent, ME17 2GQ


Inline Track Training has been established in its current location since 2004, providing rail welder training courses of the Railtech and Thermit aluminothermic welding, including oxy/fuel gas. Electric Arc welding courses including MMA and FCAW. In the past two years, we have expanded our ability to deliver track safety courses in the following: PTS, Lookout, SWL and COSS, NWR Engineering Plain Line Maintenance, S&C Maintenance, 1054 and 0053 inspections and Off Track Asset Drainage. We currently have three dedicated classrooms, complete with interactive white boards, and the ability to expand to five should

the need arise. Our practical welder training facilities currently consist of seven electric welding bays, three simulated track stillages complete with fume extraction, an external set of switches for switch inspection (0053) and electric weld repair, five rail crossings for practical electric welding and inspection (1054). We are currently looking to install a length of plain line for other courses required by clients. We like to work closely with our clients and trading partners to meet the challenges to improve ourselves in a motivated and encouraging way. We are RISQS, NSAR and Network Rail approved with ISO 3834 accreditation for the welding training with ARTP membership.

Our People, Our Values At Carillion our Values make a difference to the way we make tomorrow a better place. We care about our colleagues and we have one safety objective; we achieve together by building strong relationships with colleagues, clients, suppliers and partners; we improve by constantly identifying better ways of working and we deliver by getting the work done night after night, shift after shift.

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ulling cable through the interconnected tunnels of London Overground’s East London Line while most people are asleep is a world apart from the predictable hours of most office jobs. As one of Carillion’s signalling and telecoms apprentices, Ben Dawson, puts it, ‘There’s a bit of graft involved.’ The East London Line reopened in 2010 following a three-year reconstruction project delivered by Carillion and Balfour Beatty. Carillion was subsequently awarded a seven-year maintenance contract for the line, which connects Highbury & Islington with New Cross, Croydon and Clapham. Carillion’s responsibilities include everything from repairing the track and signals to removing graffiti and litter. In August, Ben travelled down from his home depot in Crewe to London to help run some new signalling cable between stations. He would sleep during the day, visiting the capital’s sights when he got a chance, before descending into the tunnels around Wapping station at night. Halfway through his apprenticeship, Ben is now looking at what opportunities lie ahead, but signalling was not the career path he had originally planned. Ben left school at 16 and immediately joined the army. While there he trained as an avionics technician, but part way through he sustained an injury and had no choice but to leave. ‘I was gutted to be honest with you, absolutely devastated,’ said Ben. ‘I didn’t really want to do anything else, I’d never seen myself doing anything else but you just had to take it for what it was really.’ Returning home to Stoke to recover, Ben, 18, found some information online about Carillion’s signalling and telecommunications apprenticeship scheme. Ben’s application was accepted and he was invited down to Bletchley to get his PTS. Apprentices initially work towards an NVQ Level 3 in electrical engineering and an NVQ in signal installation, completing placements within different areas of business while attending college on day release once a week. For the placements, apprentices are sent to offices and sites around the country. For some of the apprentices, it will be the first time they’ve been away from home for days/weeks at a time. ‘It makes you quite independent,’ says Ben’s friend and fellow apprentice, Adam Critchley. It is also an opportunity to visit new places. Says Ben, ‘Especially when you’re working night shifts because you can wake up at a reasonable time in the day and go out, see things, come back, have a sleep and go to work and have a laugh with the lads as well.’ This month, Ben will begin his final placement and in December he’ll start applying for jobs within Carillion’s signalling business. ‘I’m hoping to progress through the grades as quickly as possible and get as many safety courses under my belt,’ says Ben, who would eventually like to go on and train to be a controller of site safety (COSS). ‘It’s a bit more responsibility… It’s good if you want to put yourself out to go for them jobs.’


FROM CLASSROOM TO SITE Adam is in the same position. The 21 year old from the Wirral spent two years looking for an apprenticeship after completing his A-levels before joining Carillion; he came across the opportunity on the government’s apprenticeship website and applied. Like Ben, Adam knew he wanted to do something practical, more handson, and he too is already looking to progress through the ranks. ‘I think it’s a great opportunity for me. I’ve got a whole career ahead of me now as well.’ Although Ben admits to not being a fan of the classroom, he says he really enjoyed the training elements and was full of praise for his two trainers, Jim Furlong and John Foster. ‘They won’t just throw a book at you. They’ll get you out on the training area and they’ll explain because they’ve been there themselves.’ He added, ‘You can get on with them as well. You can always go and talk to them about things if you’re struggling or anything like that.’





APPRENTICESHIP ROUTE Last month, students around the country were collecting exam results. Record numbers have been offered a university place since, suggesting that high tuition fees aren’t having a marked impact on the numbers choosing to pursue undergraduate degrees. But the argument for apprenticeships as an alternative is compelling. A report produced by Barclays and the Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr) has shown just a meagre 1.8 per cent gap between the lifetime earnings of graduates and apprentices. What’s more, it suggested that in some sectors apprentices could earn 200 per cent more over the course of their careers. Convincing young people of this is still a challenge says Paul Martin, Carillion’s signalling apprenticeship manager, but there is no shortage of people looking to fill Carillion’s apprenticeship positions; more than 900 applications were received for the four places offered during the most recent intake. Paul, who gained his qualifications as an apprentice in the 1980s, spoke about his expectations for new starters today. ‘They’re really employed to be there to learn, to ask as many questions as possible and get involved.’

Although he hadn’t envisaged a career in rail engineering, Ben has quickly identified the opportunities that exist, particularly with the emergence of programmes such as Digital Railway. ‘It’s not just the new technology, it’s the new training that will be given for it. It’s extra qualifications. It all stands you well for promotion. It is exciting.’ Both Ben and Adam, who are based at Carillion’s depot in Crewe, say they are keen to support new apprentices joining the company. Ben recently travelled down to Bletchley to speak to a new class and answer questions about the scheme. It points to the friendships that are formed in these tight-knit groups. Every year, Carillion apprentices from all parts of the company organise a five-a-side football competition. ‘It’s a good relationship because all the apprentices are kept together as a group,’ said Ben. ‘We’re all in the same class at college; it’s a good environment to be in.’ Adam agreed. ‘At the start of the apprenticeship you are being introduced to the railway so you’re taking on a lot of knowledge. It’s nice to have those guys around you.’

‘We’re all in the same class at college; it’s a good environment to be in.’






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CONTROLLER OF SITE SAFETY Initial – 5 days 10/10/16 West Malling, Maidstone


CONTROLLER OF SITE SAFETY OLP & CRP MODULES Initial – 1 day 17/10/16 West Malling, Maidstone

CONTROLLER OF SITE SAFETY Recertification – 3 days 11/10/16 Nottingham

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Initial – 1 day 10/10/16 Nottingham

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Recertification – 1 day 27/10/16 Nottingham

PERSONAL TRACK SAFETY (Practical event) Initial – 1 day 11/10/16 West Malling, Maidstone

PERSONAL TRACK SAFETY (Practical event) Initial – 1 day 18/10/16 Nottingham

PERSONAL TRACK SAFETY (Practical event) Initial – 1 day 25/10/16 West Malling, Maidstone

PERSONAL TRACK SAFETY (E-LEARNING) and industry common induction Initial – 1 day 24/10/16 West Malling, Maidstone

PTS AC AND DCCR Recertification –1 day 04/10/16 West Malling, Maidstone

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Delivering the best in training and rail personnel Looking to book a Rail Training Course? Orion Group provide on-site training facilities offering a unique live training environment. • Live Rail Track specifically designed for training and testing. • Plant and machinery training areas. • E-Learning Training rooms. • Signal Training room. • Classroom environment training. BOOK A COURSE



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ADVANCE-TRS CELEBRATES ANNIVERSARY Since being established five years ago in September 2011, Advance-TRS has grown from one man’s idea into an £18 million turnover business, boasting 30 staff and some of the best recruiters in the industry.


Group managing director Andy Ridout’s unique energy and dedication has inspired and driven the team to place over 1,170 rail professionals in the past five years. This has made the company one of the sector’s leading suppliers of contractors and permanent staff. With plans to more than double the workforce again in the next three years, the rapidly growing team shares Andy’s commitment to providing excellent customer service to both candidates and clients alike, finding the best candidates for each role. Building on more than 70 years of combined industry experience and mobilising the dynamism of new recruits, the team is going from strength to strength. In the last year alone, the company has nearly doubled in size, expanding the admin, finance, marketing, compliance and sales teams. In order to accommodate this extraordinary growth, the team recently celebrated an office expansion which has doubled office space, spanning two large floors in central Guildford. All of this has been achieved whilst maintaining a singular dedication to excellent customer service. Following a collaborative consultation process with directors and staff, the company’s Core Values of Quality, Commitment, Integrity, Honesty and Loyalty were rolled out at this year’s Annual Summer Conference.  With business development plans firmly rooted in these five principles, AdvanceTRS aims to continue this pattern of growth whilst maintaining its strong reputation as dependable, effective and honest. Advance-TRS’s high standards have also been recognised by a number of awards and qualifications. This includes operating ISO 9001 certification, the world’s most popular quality management system, attaining OHSAS 18001, the internationally recognised hallmark for occupational health and safety management best practice and placing as a finalist in the coveted Recruitment Excellence category at the 2016 UK Rail Industry Awards. Following success in the rail sector, Andy Ridout identified opportunities to expand into three new sectors in autumn 2015, expanding the business to incorporate the water and utilities, telecoms and energy sectors. ‘Advance-TRS’ success has been proof that hard work and a dedication to delivering excellent service pays off.’ Andy explains, reflecting on the last five years. ‘Now the team and I are more motivated than ever to continue this sensational track record of growth and are excited for what the future brings.’ Advance Training & Recruitment Services is a specialist rail recruitment consultancy, experts in recruiting highly skilled professionals in signalling, telecoms, civils, p-way, electrification, M&E and project services. Find your next career move today, visit   ‘Together we can all advance’




Global Scale. Local Focus. – Rail and Infrastructure Vacancies Currently Available – Rail Conformance Engineer Birmingham, London, York and Derby Degree educated, NEC experience £450/day

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Deploy UK Rail are a specialist blue and white collar supplier to the Rail Industry and LUL in Power, Signalling, Electrification, Telecoms and Civils. We have in-depth knowledge of supplying and planning Rail Safety Critical, Civils, Cabling, Troughing, Trades and Electrical resources to the industry specialising in 3rd Rail environments. Deploy UK Rail hold the following qualifications: • RISQS Approved via Audit 5* • RCC (Rail Contractor’s Certificate) to supply SWL (Safe Work Leaders) • RIPS (Railway Interface Planning Scheme) 5* • ISO 9001, 18001, 14001 • ROSPA Bronze We are part of the DE Group of companies which all hold individual RISQS Certification as a contractor which complements the services we offer in Rail by providing expertise in Demolition, Asbestos Surveying and Removal and H&S consultancy specialising in Principle Design Services to clients for CDM. We work closely with our clients to help them achieve their project goals by delivering a professional reliable service which is flexible and adaptable to the ever changing Rail and LUL environment. The core of our business is built up of professionals who have serviced both the recruitment and site requirements for over 10+ years each. We have strong client relationships built on trust and delivery. As a business we are able to supply a turnkey solution P.S.D.S (Plan – Supply – Deliver – Safely). Deploy UK Rail was created with the vision that we can provide a one stop solution to delivering client needs by going above and beyond expectation.

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Profile for Rail Media

RailStaff September 2016  

RailStaff September 2016

RailStaff September 2016  

RailStaff September 2016

Profile for railmedia

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