A Conference by Rail Partners at RSN 2023 - 6 July - Derby

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A Conference by

6 July 2023 - Derby Arena - 10am to 3pm

The conference will explore how owners, operators and suppliers of trains can deliver for both the customer and the environment in a series of valuable presentations from rail industry speakers, complemented by a lively debate with industry panellists.

A Conference by Rail Partners is FREE TO ATTEND. Register at www.rsnevents.co.uk One registration provides access to the Conference and Expo

Take your seat at a Rail Partners’ Conference

A Conference hosted by Rail Partners at RSN 2023 will feature industry leading speakers from East Midlands Railway, Eversholt Rail, Rail Forum, The Department for Transport, Transport Focus, First Rail, GBRTT, Hitachi Rail, GB Railfreight and will be compered by Mark Gaynor of Rail Partners.

The conference draws upon Rail Partners’ position as a specialist trade organisation with an international representation portfolio comprising of many operator groups and freight companies. The conference will examine key topics on delivering for customers and delivering for the environment in a series of valuable presentations from the contributing rail industry speakers.

Rail Partners will provide a fresh and exciting perspective to the RSN event.

The conference will provide superb content for those looking toward the passenger and freight markets and the challenges that the railway faces, both operationally and environmentally.

Following an introduction by Andy Bagnall the chief executive of Rail Partners, the morning session will examine how the railway can deliver for its customers. In the first presentation, Will Rogers, managing director at East Midlands Railway will look at the introduction of new rolling stock and the challenges and opportunities this brings to satisfy the key objective of improving the passenger / customer experience.

Shakil Ismail, head of fleet at Eversholt Rail will then take the stage to detail from a RoSCo perspective the plans to enhance the customer experience, balancing expectation with affordability to provide the most beneficial solutions.

The morning speakers will be joined by Elaine Clark of Rail Forum, Jag Maitala of the Department for Transport and Dan Taylor of Transport Focus to discuss the realities of a cost constrained world whilst balancing the needs and expectation of customers.

The afternoon session will focus on the challenges faced in delivering for the environment and decarbonising the railway.

First Rail is an operator group operating three major UK TOCs including Avanti West Coast, Great Western Railway (GWR), South Western Railway (SWR) and two open access passenger rail services, Hull Trains and Lumo. Their speaker, Johnathan Waters, principal rolling stock engineer, will provide the first presentation in the afternoon session, which will expand upon the importance of decarbonising rail from an owning group perspective.

Change driven by decarbonisation has its consequences for strategic planning of rolling stock, the depots in which they are maintained and upon the programme for electrification. Rich Fisher head of strategic planningnetwork and integration at GBRTT will explain the outlook and the impact of decarbonisation policy on the wider railway, reflecting on the unique challenges that such a complex transportation system faces.

The afternoon panel session will see Lorna McDonald of Hitachi Rail and Robert Tiller of GB Railfreight join the afternoon speakers to provide analysis and objective consideration to the pace at which decarbonisation can be progressed in an effective, but affordable, manner.

We expect significant audience participation in the panel sessions as the topics all have impact on the many organisations that together deliver the operational railway.

Attending this high-quality event is open to all RSN delegates free of charge.

Providing delegates with a unique opportunity to hear from industry leaders and to be involved at the Rail Partners Conference at RSN 2023....the only real question is can you afford not to be there?

The event is free to attend for all delegates to RSN 2023.
Visit www.rsnevents.co.uk
to see the full programme and to register.

Rail Partners’ conference at the Rolling Stock Networking event

Join us at a Rail Partners conference which will run between 10am and 3pm at the Annual Rolling Stock Networking Event.

The conference features twelve leading industry professionals who will share their knowledge and experience during a series of presentations and audience participation sessions. With sessions throughout the day and speakers drawn from all sectors of the rail industry, the topics will be varied and will undoubtedly have much to interest all delegates.

Find us to the left of the entrance on the raised area within the main hall at Derby Arena.

Meet the compère, speakers and participants

Mark has most recently been the head of railway strategy at the Rail Delivery Group where his focus was on improving the performance and planning of the railway. Mark also led on sustainability within RDG as a member of the Rail Industry Decarbonisation Taskforce – which has developed a vision for how the railway can fully decarbonise – and the Sustainable Rail Leadership Group.

Your host and compère

Mark worked at the Department for Transport, before joining RDG in 2017. During his time in the department he worked on issues including the development of road vehicle safety standards, introducing new tax systems and incentives to encourage cleaner vehicles, developing the business cases for rail electrification schemes and leading the rail input to the Transport Infrastructure Skills Strategy.

Andy has over twenty years of experience within government, across the private sector and most recently as the director general at the Rail Delivery Group (RDG), where he coordinated policy and advocacy activities.

Will Rogers managing director

Access and parking

Andy has held a number of policy and communications jobs, initially joining Rail Delivery Group as the director of strategy and communications and then becoming chief strategy officer. Prior to this Andy was KPMG’s director of external affairs, and spent five years at the CBI as director of campaigns. He was previously a special adviser to the UK government, serving two cabinet ministers in three departments over four years.

Will is managing director of East Midlands Railway, operator of intercity and regional services from the East Midlands to London, Lincolnshire and Liverpool. Following 20 years in the rail industry, in a range of roles and companies, Will knows that trusting collaborative relationships with an unwavering focus on customers is at the heart of success. He is passionate about leading his team to make a difference to customers and communities and leave a lasting legacy.

A chartered mechanical engineer, Will uses his curiosity and desire to understand how things work to find simple solutions to problems. He is often found by his flipchart, marker in hand!

Outside work Will is a proud dad and uses his spare time to enjoy the Derbyshire countryside.

The Derby Arena is easy to find – it’s the rounded gold-coloured building standing on Pride Park next to the Derby County football stadium. Just a short walk from Derby Station those travelling by road can just enter DE24 8JB or search for Derby Arena. Parking is £3 and can be paid in advance via MiPermit or with three pound coins in machines.

Rail Partners’ conference

Shakil joined Eversholt Rail in 2014 and was appointed as the head of fleet in November 2021. He leads the fleet team as the primary technical interface with customers and suppliers along with the hands-on asset inspection team. The team provides a central point of knowledge for the fleet to input into innovation, climate solution and major asset uplift projects; all with the aim of preserving the residual value of our assets.

Shakil began his career on the railway at Bombardier Transportation in 2007 as a graduate trainee, developing into a fleet engineer with experience across various depots and operators around the UK. Shakil has an MEng in electrical engineering.

Elaine leads the Rail Forum team; she is responsible for the Rail Forum’s strategy and ensuring the delivery of a strong value proposition across all membership activities.

A Chartered Engineer, Elaine has 40 years business and industry experience gained in the electricity, chemicals and skills development sectors.

Dan is the policy lead on rolling stock design at Transport Focus and has contributed to each of its research rolling stock projects seeking to understand passenger expectations of new and refurbished trains. He led Transport Focus’s work on the new Merseyrail trains and has recently worked with Porterbrook to identify passenger needs from their Turbostar refurbishment programme. He also works on a range of policy issues including accessibility, passenger information during disruption and personal security.

Jag has worked in various parts of the rail industry for over 20 years. This has included working at Network Rail, TfL and DfT. He is currently accountable for DfT’s rolling stock policy and contracts, which includes the IET contract.

Previous roles have included introducing new trains into service, as well as optimising train maintenance regimes. Jag was also the lead specifier for train services and rolling stock for SWR franchise and project director for the CrossCountry contract.

Jonathan is a Chartered Engineer with the Institute of Mechanical Engineers. He has 11 years of rolling stock experience, starting his career as a graduate trainee at Eversholt Rail in 2012.

In 2017 Jonathan joined Agility Trains where he worked on the successful delivery, introduction, and ongoing engineering management of fleets for the Intercity Express Programme.

Jonathan joined First Rail at the start of 2023, he is currently supporting operators with fleet strategy and procurement.

Shakil Ismail head of fleet Elaine Clark chief executive Dan Taylor senior policy advisor Jag Maitala deputy director markets strategy and planning Johnatan Waters principal rolling stock engineer

Rail Partners’ conference

Rich has over 20 years of industry experience from a wide variety of roles within both train operators and Network Rail. He currently leads on key aspects of the long term strategy for rail (including rolling stock, decarbonisation, operations and major programmes) which is seeking to examine how rail can contribute to key public priorities (environmental and financial sustainability, meeting customers’ needs and growing the economy).

Lorna begun her career as a motor vehicle engineer before joining Humberside Police where she was the lead for community cohesion as well as a child protection officer. Lorna also spent time working in the Counter Terror Command in London.

Having spent 22 years in policing, Lorna decided that joining the rail industry would be an exciting career change. After a year in central government at BEIS as the lead for the UK rail supply chain, she joined Hitachi as a business manager. She is currently responsible for introducing battery technology into the UK rail market. She is committed to supporting the UK supply chain and works alongside various rail trade associations supporting new entrants into the market place.

Rob started his railway career in 1976 as a BR Old Oak Common apprentice and worked through to become engineering director of UK’s leading railfreight business.

Rob is now responsible for the repower of EE class 56 locomotives to EMD class 69 and the design and award of the new Class 99 bimode, the future of UK rail freight traction.

Paul joined Eversholt Rail in 2006. Paul began his career on the railway at London Underground in 1999 as a graduate trainee. Following this he moved to South West Trains and worked on rolling stock maintenance and major projects. Paul was appointed as client services director in January 2020 where he has responsibility for fleet, projects, customer engagement and product development.

Paul is a Chartered Engineer and fellow of the Institute of Mechanical Engineers with BEng (Hons) in mechanical engineering.

Fisher head of strategic planning network and integration Lorna McDonald head of sales - commuter Robert Tiller engineering specialist Paul Sutherland client services director

Rail Partners’ conference programme

Time​ Agenda item​ Speaker

10:00​ Welcome and morning introduction​

10:05​ An introduction to Rail Partners

Mark Gaynor (Host)​

Andy Bagnall, Rail Partners

Morning session: Delivering for customers




Introducing new rolling stock and depots to improve customer experience – a TOC perspective

Will Rogers, East Midlands Railway

RoSCos - enhancing the customer experience ​ Shakil Ismail, Eversholt Rail

Panel session: How can we improve customer experience in a cost-constrained world?

Moderated by host

Will Rogers​, East Midlands Railway

Paul Sutherland, Eversholt Rail

Elaine Clark, Rail Forum

Jag Maitala, DfT

Dan Taylor, Transport Focus​

12:00​ Morning session ends​

​Afternoon session: for the environment

13:30​ Welcome back and afternoon introduction​




The importance of decarbonising rail – an Owning Group perspective

Impact of decarbonisation on strategic planning for rolling stock, electrification and depots

Panel session: How can rail decarbonise more quickly and affordably?

Mark Gaynor (Host)​

Johnathan Waters, First Rail

Rich Fisher, GBRTT ​

Moderated by host

Johnathan Waters, First Rail

Rich Fisher, GBRTT

Lorna McDonald, Hitachi

Robert Tiller, GB Railfreight

15:00​ Wrap up and close​

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