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XCLife Summer 2011

The magazine for CrossCountry people

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OO Gauge Class 221 Voyager model

X PAGE 15


Our value for money progress reflects well on whole rail industry

Paul Worthington, right, Service Centre Team Leader at Bristol Temple Meads station, and Team Member Rob Jones with the five star rating certificate awarded by city council food safety inspectors.

by Andy Cooper MANAGING DIRECTOR, CROSSCOUNTRY

YOU cannot fail to have spotted the recent publication of the McNulty Rail Value for Money Study. This is the first major review of the rail industry, on matters other than safety, since privatisation. Set up by the last Government and supported by the present, the review looked at what one might have expected from industry costs in recent years. The study examined European rail experiences and also assessed what impact the growth in UK rail travel might have been expected to deliver. It did not consider any cuts in services or the network, and so took a very positive view of prospects for the future if the value for money (VFM) issues can be tackled. It concludes that UK rail costs are higher than one might expect. It also revealed that surprisingly, the cost per passenger mile has not been falling as travel has increased, despite the high level of railway fixed costs. The study makes a number of recommendations to Government which the Department for Transport is considering. Network Rail has already responded and begun to de-centralise its operations, placing more resource and greater responsibility under the control of new Route Managing Directors. This has possible implications for NRs ‘secondary’ customers on parts of the network, for example CrossCountry in Wessex where South West Trains inevitably leads the way. We are in close dialogue with NR about these changes. Searching out productivity improvements and seeking greater value for money is nothing new for us. Faced with very significant fixed costs – in rolling stock leases, inherited train maintenance contracts, track access charges, and so on – coupled with a large, fixed train service commitment in our franchise agreement, we have had to examine our remaining costs very closely. After almost four years, we have made good progress in securing better value. How have we gone about it? While we contract out many of our activities – it’s the nature of our franchise – we have brought several activities back in house, improving financial results and quality of service. We took back our catering supply chain and service centres from Rail Gourmet; we now manage ‘Journeycare’ assisted travel bookings in house and even sell that service to Arriva Trains Wales too; we manage group travel now rather than relying on thetrainline. Harnessing the opportunities presented by changing technology has been another route to improvement. We have made great progress in attracting people to buy tickets via our website which has reduced our costs of sale. We have introduced e-tickets which have reduced the cost of getting tickets to customers. We are well advanced with our ‘ten minute reservations’ soon to be joined by ‘ten minute retailing’ of tickets, capturing the advantages coming from the growth in the use of Smartphones. We will continue to ‘do our bit’ to improve rail industry credentials by offering value for money and lower costs. We recognise though, as does the McNulty study, that infrastructure costs present the overwhelming opportunity and we will continue to challenge and to work with Network Rail to secure a healthier financial picture for UK Rail.

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XC Life Summer 2011

Surprise visit leads to

five star award B

RISTOL service centre is a five-star operation – and it’s official! An unscheduled visit by the city council’s Food Safety Team resulted in CrossCountry’s team being awarded the maximum five stars. A sticker setting out the tip-top rating is now proudly displayed on a window inside the centre adjacent to Temple Meads station. Under Bristol City Council’s ‘Scores on the Doors’ initiative the catering services and equipment at the service centre are now designated top of the range. Paul Worthington, Service Centre Team Leader, said: “The environmental

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health officer did a lot of health and safety checks on the equipment and found it was 100%. “He was very happy and could not fault the facilities – in fact, he said our outfit was way beyond what was expected from this type of operation. “The inspector was also impressed with our training operation, which goes beyond the legal minimum.” The eight staff at the service centre order products in advance and store them in a freezer before distributing them as required to the trains. Their five-star rating is an improvement on the four stars which they achieved previously.


Engineer scoops

top accolade S

TACY Thundercliffe is already well-known as a high-achieving engineer – and now she has a prestigious award to prove it. The sole female on the CrossCountry team overseeing train maintenance, Stacy won an accolade at the Institution of Mechanical Engineers’ young engineers presentation evening. She competed against three others in front of 50 IMechE members at Manchester Metropolitan University and landed a trophy for her report on the impact of severe weather on passenger trains.

Experiences Stacy, who has a BEng in Mechanical Engineering and an MSc in Maintenance Engineering and Asset Management, said: “I drew on my experiences in a previous job at First TransPennine Express and my subsequent time at CrossCountry to research weather-related problems, solutions and the outcomes.” Stacy, aged 28, who recently gained Chartered Engineer status with ImechE, is Voyager and Fleet Contract Manager at CrossCountry. She added: “I look after the Voyager fleet and my job involves working very closely with Bombardier in all aspects of fleet management including safety, performance, availability, train presentation and commercial issues.”

X Voyager and Fleet Contract Manager Stacy Thundercliffe with the Institution of Mechancial Engineers’ award.

Paul restores Lambrettas... with all ‘M d cons’ COVER STORY

PAUL Dixon brings Lambretta scooters ‘back from the dead’ in a blaze of sixties glory. The iconic road runners, which were featured in the ‘Mod’ film Quadrophenia, usually arrive at the Manchester Train Manager’s house in a state of decay. But after months of painstaking restoration, and the addition of a mind boggling array of accessories, the scooters look just as they did in the heyday of The Who. Paul’s latest work of revival magic was on an Li125 Series 1 with a Tartan seat, which was a rusting

wreck after standing unused for 40 years. “It was really rough,” he said. “Rust had eaten into the mudguards, the floor runners and the leg shield. I had a lot of welding work to do to bring it back to the standard of the Swiss-made original.” Seven Lambrettas have so far been given the restoration treatment in Paul’s workshop at his home in Crewe. One of them arrived in boxes with hardly a nut and bolt joined together. “My new project is a TV 175 Series 2, which someone restored 20 years ago but which has not been touched since,” he added.

SCOOTER MAD: Paul Dixon with two magnificent Lambrettas he has lovingly restored.

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XC Life Summer 2011

3


XC Life focuses on Bournemouth Centre, as new network services strengthen its position as a major gateway serving south coast tourism and business

Exciting era beckons as a

key south coast hub B

Bournemouth operation lynchpins are, left to right, Team Organiser Caroline Teggin, Driver Team Manager Tom Silsbury, Customer Service Manager Terry Roberts and Driver Team Manager Peter Rapley.

Teams live up to high standards THE lynchpins of the Bournemouth operation are Peter Rapley, Tom Silsbury, Terry Roberts and Caroline Teggin. Driver Team Manager Peter, aged 53, who lives at Verwood, Dorset, is a proud father of four children with ages ranging from 14 to 26. His main leisure pursuit is walking in the countryside with the family husky dog. Driver Team Manager Tom Silsbury, aged 39, who lives in the village of Knowle, Hampshire, is a keen fisherman.

Married with two children aged six and two, he enjoys sea fishing and restoring Hot Rods from the 1940s. He currently owns a 1949 Chevrolet pick-up truck. Customer Service Manager Terry Roberts, aged 59, sums up the Bournemouth philosophy in this way: “At CrossCountry everyone gets on with each other and everyone looks after one another. I like to think that I have high standards and most of my crews at Bournemouth live up to them!”

Terry has been an ace clay pigeon shooter in his time, although he has not had time to pursue the hobby recently. Caroline Teggin, aged 32, is the team organiser at Bournemouth. Caroline, who lives in Poole, provides administrative support to the management and on-board crews. Since she took up her post at the centre she has given birth three times – to Nadine, Alfie and Sasha. They are now aged eight, four and two.

Relishing the challenges of growing passenger volumes

Long serving Train Manager Malc Jarrett catches up on the latest notice board updates.

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XC Life Summer 2011

MALC Jarrett has been on the railways for 21 years and is enjoying the challenges of Bournemouth’s expanded service. The Train Manager sees Bournemouth as a friendly centre and going to work every day is a pleasure. He is also relishing working the new schedules where passenger volumes are steadily growing. “The trend is upwards and there’s no doubt that we are supplying a service that is very much appreciated,” he said. crosscountrytrains.co.uk

For Malc, aged 37, who lives in Eastleigh, the main challenges of the job revolve around overcrowding and luggage management. “Working out of a busy tourist resort the issue of luggage is always going to be high on the agenda,” he said. “I also remain vigilant for the minority of people who try to get away without paying.” Malc is single and has a son Luke, aged 11. He enjoys travel and also helps a friend run a charter train company in his spare time.

OURNEMOUTH is entering an exciting new era following the strengthening of its importance as a south coast hub by the addition of key new services. Much-needed new links out of Southampton have been added to the vital South-North services, operated as far as Birmingham by Bournemouth traincrew. As well as providing a transport hub for thousands of tourists, cruise passengers and business commuters annually, the centre also meets the needs of the many students travelling to and from the resort’s language schools. Bournemouth’s 51 drivers and 27 train managers (recently boosted by 13 and six respectively), together with its 13 retail service managers, are relishing the extra challenges that came with the launch of the Southampton services last December. The drivers already had a varied route pattern on their journeys northward, with the option of two diversionary routes to Reading, via Guildford and Laverstock Junction. “The new Southampton routes have brought with them an irregular stopping pattern because of pathway restrictions, but our drivers are well equipped to cope,” said Driver Team Manager Peter Rapley. “For the next two or three years they will also have to deal with engineering works related to the remodelling of Reading station.” The centre runs an hourly service daily out of Bournemouth to Manchester, between 0640 and 1945, with 13 trains. From Southampton, six services staffed by Bournemouth traincrew who have made the 30-mile connecting journey run every other hour to

Driver Keith Niblock – one of 51 drivers based at Bournemouth.

Newcastle between 0946 and 1746. Customer Service Manager Terry Roberts said: “There’s a great source of pride attached to working at Bournemouth. The addition of the Southampton services is welcomed because they add to the security of the job.” Terry pinpoints luggage management as

the key challenge for his train managers – an especially demanding task in the major holiday location. The Bournemouth centre includes a main office for the managers, a mess room, kitchen and open learning room – all situated within the station complex.

Bournemouth FACTFILE: ■ The 1885-built station is Grade II listed and was revamped in 2000 in a joint initiative by Network Rail, Bournemouth Council and the Heritage Fund.

Driver Simon Davies books on for duty.

■ The train shed roof was replaced following damage by high winds. ■ Trains are stabled in Eastleigh depot, on the other side of Southampton. ■ Bournemouth has the fourth-longest platform

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in Britain, a quarter of a mile long. ■ There were originally two stations in the resort, Bournemouth Central and Bournemouth West. The latter closed in 1967. ■ The station’s annual passenger throughput is 2.8 million. ■ The old steam sheds were situated on the site of the current station car park.

XC Life Summer 2011

5


XC Life focuses on Bournemouth Centre, as new network services strengthen its position as a major gateway serving south coast tourism and business

Exciting era beckons as a

key south coast hub B

Bournemouth operation lynchpins are, left to right, Team Organiser Caroline Teggin, Driver Team Manager Tom Silsbury, Customer Service Manager Terry Roberts and Driver Team Manager Peter Rapley.

Teams live up to high standards THE lynchpins of the Bournemouth operation are Peter Rapley, Tom Silsbury, Terry Roberts and Caroline Teggin. Driver Team Manager Peter, aged 53, who lives at Verwood, Dorset, is a proud father of four children with ages ranging from 14 to 26. His main leisure pursuit is walking in the countryside with the family husky dog. Driver Team Manager Tom Silsbury, aged 39, who lives in the village of Knowle, Hampshire, is a keen fisherman.

Married with two children aged six and two, he enjoys sea fishing and restoring Hot Rods from the 1940s. He currently owns a 1949 Chevrolet pick-up truck. Customer Service Manager Terry Roberts, aged 59, sums up the Bournemouth philosophy in this way: “At CrossCountry everyone gets on with each other and everyone looks after one another. I like to think that I have high standards and most of my crews at Bournemouth live up to them!”

Terry has been an ace clay pigeon shooter in his time, although he has not had time to pursue the hobby recently. Caroline Teggin, aged 32, is the team organiser at Bournemouth. Caroline, who lives in Poole, provides administrative support to the management and on-board crews. Since she took up her post at the centre she has given birth three times – to Nadine, Alfie and Sasha. They are now aged eight, four and two.

Relishing the challenges of growing passenger volumes

Long serving Train Manager Malc Jarrett catches up on the latest notice board updates.

4

XC Life Summer 2011

MALC Jarrett has been on the railways for 21 years and is enjoying the challenges of Bournemouth’s expanded service. The Train Manager sees Bournemouth as a friendly centre and going to work every day is a pleasure. He is also relishing working the new schedules where passenger volumes are steadily growing. “The trend is upwards and there’s no doubt that we are supplying a service that is very much appreciated,” he said. crosscountrytrains.co.uk

For Malc, aged 37, who lives in Eastleigh, the main challenges of the job revolve around overcrowding and luggage management. “Working out of a busy tourist resort the issue of luggage is always going to be high on the agenda,” he said. “I also remain vigilant for the minority of people who try to get away without paying.” Malc is single and has a son Luke, aged 11. He enjoys travel and also helps a friend run a charter train company in his spare time.

OURNEMOUTH is entering an exciting new era following the strengthening of its importance as a south coast hub by the addition of key new services. Much-needed new links out of Southampton have been added to the vital South-North services, operated as far as Birmingham by Bournemouth traincrew. As well as providing a transport hub for thousands of tourists, cruise passengers and business commuters annually, the centre also meets the needs of the many students travelling to and from the resort’s language schools. Bournemouth’s 51 drivers and 27 train managers (recently boosted by 13 and six respectively), together with its 13 retail service managers, are relishing the extra challenges that came with the launch of the Southampton services last December. The drivers already had a varied route pattern on their journeys northward, with the option of two diversionary routes to Reading, via Guildford and Laverstock Junction. “The new Southampton routes have brought with them an irregular stopping pattern because of pathway restrictions, but our drivers are well equipped to cope,” said Driver Team Manager Peter Rapley. “For the next two or three years they will also have to deal with engineering works related to the remodelling of Reading station.” The centre runs an hourly service daily out of Bournemouth to Manchester, between 0640 and 1945, with 13 trains. From Southampton, six services staffed by Bournemouth traincrew who have made the 30-mile connecting journey run every other hour to

Driver Keith Niblock – one of 51 drivers based at Bournemouth.

Newcastle between 0946 and 1746. Customer Service Manager Terry Roberts said: “There’s a great source of pride attached to working at Bournemouth. The addition of the Southampton services is welcomed because they add to the security of the job.” Terry pinpoints luggage management as

the key challenge for his train managers – an especially demanding task in the major holiday location. The Bournemouth centre includes a main office for the managers, a mess room, kitchen and open learning room – all situated within the station complex.

Bournemouth FACTFILE: ■ The 1885-built station is Grade II listed and was revamped in 2000 in a joint initiative by Network Rail, Bournemouth Council and the Heritage Fund.

Driver Simon Davies books on for duty.

■ The train shed roof was replaced following damage by high winds. ■ Trains are stabled in Eastleigh depot, on the other side of Southampton. ■ Bournemouth has the fourth-longest platform

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in Britain, a quarter of a mile long. ■ There were originally two stations in the resort, Bournemouth Central and Bournemouth West. The latter closed in 1967. ■ The station’s annual passenger throughput is 2.8 million. ■ The old steam sheds were situated on the site of the current station car park.

XC Life Summer 2011

5


Long service & leavers

As a supplement to the XC Life focus on Bournemouth on the previous pages, Driver Assessor MIKE GUBBINS, aged 62, born and bred in the town, tells us why he likes living there.

BEST wishes to Leeds Train Manager Roy Clark and Birmingham Senior Conductor John Nixon who recently retired from the company.

Mike Gubbins at the seafront in Bournemouth with the resort’s famous pier in the background.

Congratulations to the following who have received long service awards: 25 YEARS Mark Adams, Cambridge Driver; Karen Chedgzoy, Plymouth Train Manager; Tim Rushton, Cannon House Duty Control Manager; Samuel Stewart, Birmingham Senior Conductor; Iain Sturch, Birmingham Senior Conductor; Michael Maddicks, Plymouth Driver. 10 YEARS Caroline Armstrong, Plymouth Retail Service Manager; Caroline Archibald, Birmingham Train Manager; Donna Broomhall, Cannon House Traincrew Diagramming Manager; Simon Stratford, Bristol Train Manager; Morys Southern, Plymouth Retail Service Manager; Richard Freeth, Birmingham Driver; Stefan Fletcher, Newcastle Driver; Mark Dyson, Plymouth Service Centre Team Member; Kathy Grant, Birmingham New Street Customer Service Team Member; Saj Mahmood, Birmingham New Street Customer Service Team Member; Eddie Martin, Bournemouth Train Manager; Karen Jardine, Edinburgh Train Manager; Tee-Jay Homer, Birmingham Train Manager; Rachel Johnson, Bristol Driver; Manjit Bahia, Cannon House Fulfilment Support Agent; Kuldip Uppal, Birmingham New Street Customer Service Team Member; Steve Hodge, Plymouth Retail Service Manager; Zoe Loudon, Bristol Driver; Michael Greaves, Plymouth Retail Service Manager; Ryan Blackie, Plymouth Train Manager; Emma West, Plymouth Train Manager; Christopher Verity, Plymouth Driver; Rachel Kennedy, Plymouth Train Manager; Frances Meaker, Plymouth Retail Service Manager; Sal Dad, Cannon House Accounts Payable Assistant; Adam Mapstone, Birmingham Retail Service Manager; Karl Wilson, Birmingham Retail Service Manager; Steve Beesley, Birmingham Driver; Steve Guildford, Leeds Driver.

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XC Life Summer 2011

Idyllic beaches and a good place to live

‘‘ B

OURNEMOUTH people are fortunate because they are blessed with a warm climate and seven miles of sandy beaches that run from Hengistbury Head in the east to Sandbanks, in Poole, in the west. The town is only a short distance away from the New Forest, which I visited often when young as a member of the school nature club. We used to cycle there – a 30-mile round trip. The Forestry Commission allowed us to use three acres of the forest to study plants and wildlife. I remember deer and adders which were basking in the undergrowth if it was a fine day. It was idyllic on the Bournemouth beaches as a child. It’s an attractive sea front with Central Gardens behind it – a big public park running several miles down the valley of the River Bourne to the sea. Bournemouth is very much a popular tourist

destination and the Bournemouth International Centre is used by the main political parties for their conferences. My family and I have been to a number of shows at the International Centre, including Ken Dodd and Cliff Richard. Together with my wife Sue, daughters Joanne and Lauren and granddaughter Amelia I have also watched pantomimes there. The town is a good place to live, with a lot of friendly people around. It’s a good mix – tourists, students from the University and language schools, together with business people and local residents. There’s a thriving watersports community and I have recently joined the North Haven Yacht Club. I am proud to have served on the railways in Bournemouth since 1964, when I started as a cleaner and then a fireman on steam trains.

’’

Hot coals charity run... and just one blister STEVEN Elliott ran barefoot 20 metres over hot coals to raise money for the Rainbow Trust children’s charity. To prepare him for his exploit during fund-raising at Lumley Castle by the Durham Round Table, the Newcastle train manager went through a two-hour ‘mind over matter’ seminar. “One of the hot coals got stuck

between my toes,” said Stephen. “However the preparation was effective and I ended up with just one blister.” Steven, who has been fund-raising for the Round Table for seven years and has been chairman of the Durham branch, went on a few weeks later to tackle the Three Peaks Challenge.

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Ashley Brown in period uniform at the Crich Tramway Village

Tramway TAKES ASHLEY ON A

Business STATS PERIOD 12

A

SHLEY Brown travels 260 miles to go back in time in his spare-time role as a conductor at Crich Tramway Village in Derbyshire. The Edinburgh Customer Service Assistant got to know the home for preserved trams when his parents lived there during his childhood. In 2004 he joined them as a volunteer at the age of 16, and now as well as guiding visitors while they travel on the historic vehicles he puts in shifts as a trainee overhead line engineer. Ashley dresses in period costume and uses old-fashioned techniques to maintain the wires which he has just helped to tighten after they

became slack in last summer’s intense heat. “It’s great to be part of an enterprise which protects a transport heritage which otherwise would vanish.” he said. “I go down to the Tramway Village on long weekends or during my annual leave. I am assigned a tram for a whole day, or I provide lunch-time cover for the entire fleet. Each tram is different – they all have their own quirky identity with individual braking systems and bells.” Ashley is currently extending his overhead line expertise after gaining qualifications to drive the vehicle which tows the tower wagon into place.

Actor lands part in fantasy drama AMATEUR actor Craig Lawrence has landed a part in an outdoor Theatre in the Park production with Rugby Theatre. The keen thespian will play a wizard in a fantasy drama themed around the Goodly King Caldecott (Summer) and the Ice Queen (Winter). Fellow actors will play an array of fantastical creatures from magpies to giants. It is the latest role for CrossCountry’s Learning Development Consultant Craig, who in the past has played Slim in Oklahoma with the

Leamington and Warwick Music Society and movie producer Mr Kleiman in Mack and Mabel. “My most challenging show was Guys and Dolls where I played four different parts,” said Craig. “I like acting because the buzz it gives you is great and the camaraderie between the cast is incredible. “At times it’s like being a swan – apparently all professional and serene but backstage caught up in pure mayhem with costume changes, getting props, swapping mikes, having make-up redone and costume problems sorted.”

crosscountrytrains.co.uk

(four weeks to 05/03/11) PERFORMANCE: 89.8% DELAY CAUSE: Network Rail 65.8%, XC 9.6%, other train operators 24.7% DELAY CAUSED BY XC: 39.4% within target AVERAGE PERFORMANCE OVER THE LAST YEAR: 87.9% FLEET MILES BETWEEN FAULTS OVER THE LAST YEAR: Class 170 – 22,863 (+22% year-on-year) Class 220 – 67,460 (+53% year-on-year) Class 221 – 94,036 (+20% year-on-year) HST – 14,658 (+19% year-on-year) CATERING SALES: +6.1% on last year AVERAGE TICKET PRICE: £11.38 (+2.3% year-on-year) PASSENGER COUNTS: The % of counts successfully completed 73% (last year 74%) XC Life Summer 2011

7


Meet the Department whose task is to ensure the company sells the right seat... to the right customer... at the right time... and for the right price

Head of Revenue Garry Tyrrell, right, in discussion with Yield and Capacity Manager Pal Singh.

Many factors make up the

crucial balancing act T

Business Analyst Patrick Sibley contacts the Association of Train Operating Companies for an economic review.

Commercial actions

To bring staff up to speed on the ins-and-outs of revenue, some train managers and senior conductors are being given the opportunity of spending a day at Cannon House to watch the team in action. They will be shown how the department manages the availability of products using the data supplied by traincrew through on-train passenger counts. The day will also involve insight into how the team distributes retail information to other train operators and sales outlets such as The Trainline and travel agents. Other key areas of revenue are managing demand and capacity on CrossCountry’s services and working to ensure the right quota of Advance Purchase tickets is available on the appropriate services. The different members of the Revenue Department all play an important part:

Garry said: “We aim to sell the right seat to the right customer at the right time for the right price. “It is the department’s aim to ensure that commercial actions are understood at all levels within CrossCountry in order for these actions to have maximum revenue impact.”

Yield Analysts Camelia Bujoreanu, Nicky Chiejina, Lisa Beaumont and Bob Bromwich maximise revenue for individual routes while using the Revenue Management System and the National Reservation System. They form an integral part of the Commercial team and forge strong

HE Revenue Department’s role in maximising CrossCountry’s income makes it one of the most vital – and sometimes contentious– areas of the business. Its work in balancing the complex ticket pricing structure can lead to complaints from customers that prices are too high, and from colleagues that they are too low. But setting fares for paying passengers is not the department’s only task – the 10-strong team led by Head of Revenue Garry Tyrrell looks after all issues surrounding revenue, passenger demand and ticket retailing. At the core of its operation is the monitoring of how much revenue is generated by ticket sales and setting the prices for tickets in all CrossCountry’s markets.

links with the company’s internal business departments. Yield and Capacity Manager Pal Singh maximises revenue by managing CrossCountry’s short and long-distance markets to get the best yield. He ensures trains are open for reservations at 84 days before departure. Pricing and Revenue Analyst Peter Mason is in charge of the XC Fares database, from bringing in fares changes to making sure the company keeps within regulations. He analyses CrossCountry revenue to understand the spread of ticket types on trains, passenger volumes, ticket values and demographics. Distribution Manager Daniel Waine is responsible for ticket sales through all non-CrossCountry distribution channels. He monitors and forecasts the cost of having tickets printed and issued. Daniel also works closely with onboard staff, ticket offices and third party retailers to solve any issuing problems reported through the Ticket Irregularity Report (TIR) process. Business Analysis Manager Patrick Sibley models and forecasts revenue and passenger growth on the CrossCountry

network. He produces regular detailed reports to understand current trading trends and comes up with ideas to stimulate additional passenger growth. Pricing and Revenue Assistant Peter Rothery provides data and insight to the Pricing and Revenue Analyst and the Business Analysis Manager. He analyses the potential revenue effect of pricing strategies and helps to bring in general fare changes and iron out anomalies.

Yield Analyst Lisa Beaumont, left, talks with Train Manager Lucy Chesterfield about the availability of advance tickets.

Summing up the department’s role David Watkin, Commercial Director, said: “The Revenue team is absolutely critical to the commercial success of the company. It sets and manages the prices that we charge. At the same time it maintains an often tricky balance between encouraging new customers and earning as much as we can from existing customers without causing overcrowding or – perhaps worse – empty seats that we otherwise could have filled!”

Pricing and Revenue Analyst Peter Mason, left, and Pricing Revenue Assistant Peter Rothery check the journey planner and fare at Birmingham New Street booking office.

The Revenue Department welcomes comments and feedback from colleagues. You can contact them at revenue.team@ crosscountrytrains.co.uk

The Revenue Department at Cannon House.

Yield Analysts, left to right, Nicky Chiejina, Camelia Bujoreanu and Bob Bromwich study the revenue management data.

8

XC Life Summer 2011

Distribution Manager Daniel Waine talks with Virgin Trains’ Customer Service Assistant Maria McCarron about ticket regulations.

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XC Life Summer 2011

9


Meet the Department whose task is to ensure the company sells the right seat... to the right customer... at the right time... and for the right price

Head of Revenue Garry Tyrrell, right, in discussion with Yield and Capacity Manager Pal Singh.

Many factors make up the

crucial balancing act T

Business Analyst Patrick Sibley contacts the Association of Train Operating Companies for an economic review.

Commercial actions

To bring staff up to speed on the ins-and-outs of revenue, some train managers and senior conductors are being given the opportunity of spending a day at Cannon House to watch the team in action. They will be shown how the department manages the availability of products using the data supplied by traincrew through on-train passenger counts. The day will also involve insight into how the team distributes retail information to other train operators and sales outlets such as The Trainline and travel agents. Other key areas of revenue are managing demand and capacity on CrossCountry’s services and working to ensure the right quota of Advance Purchase tickets is available on the appropriate services. The different members of the Revenue Department all play an important part:

Garry said: “We aim to sell the right seat to the right customer at the right time for the right price. “It is the department’s aim to ensure that commercial actions are understood at all levels within CrossCountry in order for these actions to have maximum revenue impact.”

Yield Analysts Camelia Bujoreanu, Nicky Chiejina, Lisa Beaumont and Bob Bromwich maximise revenue for individual routes while using the Revenue Management System and the National Reservation System. They form an integral part of the Commercial team and forge strong

HE Revenue Department’s role in maximising CrossCountry’s income makes it one of the most vital – and sometimes contentious– areas of the business. Its work in balancing the complex ticket pricing structure can lead to complaints from customers that prices are too high, and from colleagues that they are too low. But setting fares for paying passengers is not the department’s only task – the 10-strong team led by Head of Revenue Garry Tyrrell looks after all issues surrounding revenue, passenger demand and ticket retailing. At the core of its operation is the monitoring of how much revenue is generated by ticket sales and setting the prices for tickets in all CrossCountry’s markets.

links with the company’s internal business departments. Yield and Capacity Manager Pal Singh maximises revenue by managing CrossCountry’s short and long-distance markets to get the best yield. He ensures trains are open for reservations at 84 days before departure. Pricing and Revenue Analyst Peter Mason is in charge of the XC Fares database, from bringing in fares changes to making sure the company keeps within regulations. He analyses CrossCountry revenue to understand the spread of ticket types on trains, passenger volumes, ticket values and demographics. Distribution Manager Daniel Waine is responsible for ticket sales through all non-CrossCountry distribution channels. He monitors and forecasts the cost of having tickets printed and issued. Daniel also works closely with onboard staff, ticket offices and third party retailers to solve any issuing problems reported through the Ticket Irregularity Report (TIR) process. Business Analysis Manager Patrick Sibley models and forecasts revenue and passenger growth on the CrossCountry

network. He produces regular detailed reports to understand current trading trends and comes up with ideas to stimulate additional passenger growth. Pricing and Revenue Assistant Peter Rothery provides data and insight to the Pricing and Revenue Analyst and the Business Analysis Manager. He analyses the potential revenue effect of pricing strategies and helps to bring in general fare changes and iron out anomalies.

Yield Analyst Lisa Beaumont, left, talks with Train Manager Lucy Chesterfield about the availability of advance tickets.

Summing up the department’s role David Watkin, Commercial Director, said: “The Revenue team is absolutely critical to the commercial success of the company. It sets and manages the prices that we charge. At the same time it maintains an often tricky balance between encouraging new customers and earning as much as we can from existing customers without causing overcrowding or – perhaps worse – empty seats that we otherwise could have filled!”

Pricing and Revenue Analyst Peter Mason, left, and Pricing Revenue Assistant Peter Rothery check the journey planner and fare at Birmingham New Street booking office.

The Revenue Department welcomes comments and feedback from colleagues. You can contact them at revenue.team@ crosscountrytrains.co.uk

The Revenue Department at Cannon House.

Yield Analysts, left to right, Nicky Chiejina, Camelia Bujoreanu and Bob Bromwich study the revenue management data.

8

XC Life Summer 2011

Distribution Manager Daniel Waine talks with Virgin Trains’ Customer Service Assistant Maria McCarron about ticket regulations.

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XC Life Summer 2011

9


Right Royal

Reading First Class Host Amy Ferneyhough.

Recipes CrossCountry’s very own Royal chef Jules Bacon, who was once cook to the Queen Mother at the Royal Lodge, offers you a recipe for a summer dish.

Picnic Pie PASTRY: 1lb plain flour, 8oz butter cubed pinch of salt, water to bind, ten-inch flan dish FILLING 6 rashers of smoked back bacon 2 large jacket potatoes,one large onion 4 medium tomatoes,4 medium eggs 8oz grated cheese,salt and pepper METHOD Pastry: 1 Put the flour, salt and cubed butter into a large bowl.

2 3 4

Use your fingertips to rub in the butter until it resembles breadcrumbs. Using a knife stir in just enough water to bind the dough together. Wrap the dough in cling film and chill for 10 to 15 minutes.

While the pastry is chilling, prepare your filling for the pie: 1 Part-cook the two large jacket potatoes in the microwave for 10 minutes. 2 Lightly fry off the bacon and place to one side. 3 Slice up your tomatoes and onion.

4

Slice up your part-cooked jacket potatoes.

Line your quiche dish with half of the pastry and put the other half to one side for the lid. In the lined quiche dish, place the rashers of cooked bacon on the bottom, then place the sliced jacket potatoes on the bacon covering all. Place the sliced onion and tomatoes on top of the potatoes. Cover all this with the grated cheese. Make four little indentations in the cheese, then crack a raw egg into each pocket. Sprinkle some salt and pepper and roll out the rest of the pastry to make a lid to place over the top of the pie. Egg wash the top of the pie for a nice glaze. Place in oven at 180 degrees or gas mark 4 for 45 minutes to an hour until golden brown.

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XC Life Summer 2011

AMY’S TATTOOS ARE

poetry in motion A

MY Ferneyhough is one of CrossCountry’s tallest employees – and she’s almost certainly the most tattooed. The 6ft 3in First Class Host is the proud owner of 20 different ‘inks’ including a poem by W. B. Yeats which stretches from her shoulder blades to her middle back. She had her first tattoo – a seahorse – 10 years ago and her biggest is an octopus which sprawls across her left arm. During her day job Reading-based Amy keeps her astonishing artwork discreetly out of view, but in her spare time she is proud to show it off as a model. She is signed up to four modelling website companies and has also been featured in tattoo books. “I have always loved tattoos because of their uniqueness – if we were all meant to look the same tattoos would never have caught on,” said Amy. “Although the alternative look is very much in demand, it’s very difficult to break into modelling. I have been able to do so mainly because of my height.” X Amy shows her biggest tattoo – an octopus on her left arm. W Left, a modelling photo of the poem tattooed on her back.


XClassified CrossCountry staff are invited to advertise for free in this quarterly ‘small ads’ column. The section is open to anyone who has something to sell, rents out holiday accommodation, runs a mobile disco, is organising a football match or an excursion to celebrate a birthday, wanting to let people know about a night out ...or is simply looking to place an appeal for a specific item. To place an advert here contact us at: – communications@crosscountrytrains.co. uk or ron.quenby@btconnect.com

Andreas Schilling, left, is given a tour of Central Rivers depot by Bombardier’s Senior Project Manager Paul Woolley.

HOLIDAY DISCOUNTS

German MD praises business excellence T

HE Managing Director of DB Regio’s RheinNeckar business made a visit to CrossCountry during April – and declared that he was “really impressed” by what he saw. Andreas Schilling spent time at Cannon House, Birmingham New Street station and Bombardier’s Central Rivers depot to share best practice. At Cannon House he spent time with the marketing and revenue teams, and was given an insight into how we are taking forward online retailing and ten minute reservations. Herr Schilling remarked on similarities – and occasional differences – with the operations of the ‘S-Bahn’ commuter railway he runs, which is based in the city of Mannheim. He said: “Your focus on operational excellence is the key to your success in your franchise. I am really impressed with the way your business covers the country, co-ordinated from your base on one floor of Cannon House. “It is clear that you are both flexible and practical, and that you really try to bring information to your people in a

Former employee Tony Morris is offering holiday discounts to all employees of CrossCountry. Tony, Personal Travel Advisor at Kwik Travel Ltd, can be reached on 0800 023 7684 or tonym@kwiktravel.com The range of holidays on offer can be viewed on the Kwik Travel website at www.kwiktraveldeals.co.uk/ tony-morris. Kwik Travel, a member of ABTA, offers short breaks in the UK, cheap last-minute holidays, luxury round-the-world cruises and a variety of other breaks. It uses trusted tour operators including Thomson, Thomas Cook, Virgin Holidays and Cosmos.

POUNDSINYOUR POCKET.COM THE UTILITY WAREHOUSE provides more than 350,000 customers in the UK with great savings on their utility bills, as well as other savings from high street shopping to family holidays. It can help save 25% on shopping and reduce household bills. Recommended by Which magazine, it offers free global calls and cheap online shopping, with reduced mobile phone tariffs. Contact Luan on 07985 079849 or email: Luan.spreadbury@poundsin yourpocket.com The website is at www.poundsinyourpocket.com

Herr Schilling with CrossCountry’s Head of Fleet Will Rogers during the fleet meeting at Central Rivers. way they can understand, so that they know what is going on. “It is also interesting to see that the differences between our companies are not so great. We have to communicate with each other to learn from the minor differences.” On the second day of his visit Herr Schilling attended one of CrossCountry’s regular Fleet Performance meetings at Central Rivers. There he made a fact-finding

tour of the site to see first-hand how CrossCountry and Bombardier work together, and discussed a variety of rolling stock matters with Head of Fleet Will Rogers. After returning to Birmingham in the cab of a Voyager Herr Schilling visited the service centre at New Street, where he was shown round by Senior Customer Service Manager Dave Eaton and took the opportunity to chat with staff.

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CALLING ALL FOOTBALLERS Andrew Evans, Retail Service Manager at Bournemouth, is looking to set up an 11-a-side football team. He has already organised six-a-side matches against Reading, but would like to run a more established squad to play further afield. If you are interested phone 07816 488712.

THESE ADVERTS ARE ALSO INCLUDED IN THE SOCIAL SECTION OF THE CROSSCOUNTRY INTRANET SITE, WHICH IS AVAILABLE AT ALL CENTRES. XC Life Summer 2011

11


LOUISE’S SKILL IS

icing on the cake

Lousie Ellard with one of her novelty icing cake creations – a happy-looking penguin, complete with a Gucci handbag.

F

ORMER Chef Louise Ellard is in demand for her themed celebration cakes which are causing a stir among her colleagues in Edinburgh. Staff are queuing up to avail themselves of the train manager’s dazzling icing skills. Louise makes cakes for retirements, special events and birthdays, decorating them with themes ranging from motorbikes to football. Her most unusual commission to date has been a replica of the Informatics Forum at Edinburgh University weighing two and a half stones. “Two years ago I made a cake for my sister’s 40th birthday,” she said. “I realised that I really enjoy the whole process, from making the designs to putting on the decorations.”

Business STATS PERIOD 13 (four weeks to 31/03/11) PERFORMANCE: 90.2% DELAY CAUSE: Network Rail 61.1%, XC 10.4%, other train operators 28.5% DELAY CAUSED BY XC: 35.5% within target AVERAGE PERFORMANCE OVER THE LAST YEAR: 88.0% FLEET MILES BETWEEN FAULTS OVER THE LAST YEAR: Class 170 – 23,974 (-23% year-on-year) Class 220 – 67,622 (+51% year-on-year) Class 221 – 35,479 (+10% year-on-year) HST – 22,101 (+12% year-on-year) CATERING SALES: +3.4% on last year AVERAGE TICKET PRICE: £11.69 (+2.5% year-on-year) PASSENGER COUNTS: The % of counts successfully completed 75% (last year 74%)

12

XC Life Summer 2011

Drivers take up cycling and walking challenges for charity CROSSCOUNTRY drivers are clocking up the miles the hard way – by getting on their bikes and walking to keep fit and raise money for charity. While most of the country was watching the Royal Wedding, Birmingham Driver Jake Medley and 15 colleagues spent the three-day Bank Holiday break cycling 170 miles from Morecambe to Bridlington. Eleven Birmingham Drivers, a Bristol Driver, a Control colleague and three Bombardier fitters missed the wedding on TV but celebrated the big day at a street party and fireworks display during their first overnight stop at Grassington, North Yorkshire. Jake said: “Most of us started cycling two years ago to lose weight and I’ve shed two stone. We faced a headwind most of the way but the hardest part was a one in five climb at Settle. However we all enjoyed the challenge and we’ll use next year’s ride to raise money for charity.” Leeds Driver Dean Scarth and nine friends are stepping out on a sponsored two-day 26-mile coastal walk on the weekend of 10/11 June along the Cleveland Way from Robin Hood’s Bay to Filey,

handing out CrossCountry plastic wallet ticket holders as they go. The walkers hope to raise more than £5,000 from sponsors and a bucket collection along the way for the West Yorkshire Forget Me Not Trust hospice charity. This donation will be boosted later in the year with a raffle for two first class tickets offered by CrossCountry for any destination on the company’s network. Leeds Driver John Graham and his friend, known collectively as The Two Fat Lads, will be shedding pounds to raise pounds in a two-week sponsored cycle ride of almost 1,000 miles from Land’s End to John O’Groats this summer, along with another friend joining them on the ride. John who can be sponsored on www.justgiving.com/twofatlads aims to raise £2,000 for Macmillan Cancer Support in memory of his cousin Stuart Waring who died of cancer last year. John said: “I’ve already lost three stone in training for the ride. None of us are exactly skinny, but we probably will be by the time we reach John O’Groats.”

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An unexpected result!

Sheffield Wednesday goalkeeper Nicky Weaver, centre, pictured with, left to right, Mark Sheldon, Matt Sheldon, Martin Fake and Russ Gorman when they were special guests of the club for the game against Plymouth Argyle.

OWLS LAY ON TREAT AFTER PRAISE FOR FANS

M

ATT Sheldon got an unexpected result when he sent a letter to Sheffield Wednesday praising their fans for being well-behaved on his train. Officials at the club were so pleased that they sent him an invitation to attend their home match against Plymouth Argyle as a special guest. His letter describing the supporters as “a real credit to the club” had been posted on the Owls’ website and had drawn a warm response from the Hillsborough management. Matt took up the offer and was thrilled to be introduced on arrival to goalkeeper Nicky Weaver, a former England Under-21 international. After a tour of the ground he watched the game

in the comfort of the directors’ box accompanied by his brother Mark and CrossCountry colleagues Martin Fake, Derby Driver, and Russ Gorman, Birmingham Revenue Protection Inspector. Matt, Birmingham Train Manager, said: “I was so impressed with the good humour of the Wednesday fans when they travelled on the 1825 Exeter to Leeds service after their team had been through a 5-1 drubbing at the hands of the Grecians in December last year, that I wrote to the club. “To be offered complimentary tickets to the Plymouth match as a result came as a complete shock. I would like to thank Sheffield Wednesday for giving me and my friends an experience I will never forget.”

Clampdown on cable theft NEW initiatives are underway to tackle the serious problem of cable theft, with a dedicated British Transport Police task force leading the way. Action is being taken to disrupt thieves targeting power and signalling cables for their copper content as well as track, overhead line equipment and even clips used to hold the rails in place. During 2010 a total of 2,770 cable-related offences were recorded – a significant rise on previous years – while to date, in 2011, more than

900 offences are on record. CrossCountry Head of Performance Philip Meikle said cable theft is one of the largest causes of delay and cancellation to CrossCountry, and effects thousands of our customers each month. He added: “We work very closely with Network Rail to monitor cable theft hot spots and we make sure Network Rail and British Transport Police make every effort to control the situation as best they can.” Working with Network Rail, the BTP has set up Operation crosscountrytrains.co.uk

Leopard to bring in a new streamlined approach including helicopter patrols, intelligence-led policing and disruption of the supply chain for stolen copper. Following a pilot scheme in Yorkshire all scrap metal merchants in Sheffield, Rotherham and Doncaster are now fully registered with local authorities and all have been visited to make sure book-keeping is up to scratch. A number of recent court cases have reinforced the railway authorities’ intention to bring offenders to justice.

Business STATS PERIOD 01 (four weeks to 30/04/11) PERFORMANCE: 89.0% DELAY CAUSE: Network Rail 68.1%, XC 9.6%, other train operators 22.3% DELAY CAUSED BY XC: 21.6% within target AVERAGE PERFORMANCE OVER THE LAST YEAR: 88.1% FLEET MILES BETWEEN FAULTS OVER THE LAST YEAR: Class 170 – 20,241 (+19 year-on-year) Class 220 – 65,130 (+52% year-on-year) Class 221 – 55,864 (+13% year-on-year) HST – 31,227 (+14% year-on-year) CATERING SALES: +2.3% on last year AVERAGE TICKET PRICE: £11.33 (-1.1% year-on-year) PASSENGER COUNTS: The % of counts successfully completed 79% (last year 72%)

XC Life Summer 2011

13


My Life

Emma at work at her desk in Cannon House.

Emma Mason, Personal Assistant to Managing Director Andy Cooper Emma, aged 33, who is based at Cannon House, is a member of PEARS, the Personal Executive Assistant Regional Society. Her main job is providing administrative support to the Managing Director and assisting the Executive team.

0740 I make the 20 minute drive in to work. I arrive early – my actual start time is 0830. I have my own work area next to Andy Cooper’s office on the 5th floor of Cannon House. On arrival I grab a coffee, check my emails and prepare for the day ahead. I work with a day-to-day ‘to do’ list which helps me prioritise my workload.

0845 Catch up on any outstanding issues with Andy. Go over any diary changes, make sure he is prepared for meetings later in the day.

0900 Check everything is ready for this morning’s board meeting. I have made up executive packs for the seven directors, comprising of matters arising from the previous board meeting, meeting agenda and directors’ reports and any proposals submitted by each of the department heads. Place any last minute documents in the Board Room, replenish the tea and coffee facilities, make sure the flip chart has enough paper and download any presentations.

1000 Monthly board meeting begins. I make a note of any action points that are discussed or agreed during the meeting. Highlight issues that will need to be developed afterwards.

1230 Short break for lunch – the timing is flexible.

1400 Board meeting ends. I start to write up my

notes, check any messages, emails and answer any immediate queries. Log any post that has arrived and scan letters into electronic file ready for Andy’s review.

1430 To Birmingham Hippodrome where I meet the events organiser to discuss the arrangements for the six-monthly Senior Management Conference which is to take place shortly. I chose the IMI suite sponsored by the Royal Ballet as the venue for these conferences, soon after I started my job. It has natural light – very important.

1530 Back at Cannon House I finalise hotel bookings for the next staff forum, where three directors take two days out of their diary to spend time on the frontline away from their office base. I’m a stickler for detail – I make sure the dietary needs of each participant are met.

0945 Meet and greet any external visitors who might be arriving in reception.

1600 I spend time catching up with Andy and reviewing any post he has received, signing invoices, discussing the appointments for the forthcoming week and giving any papers he will need for meetings first thing on Monday. I also use this opportunity to list any forthcoming priorities or meetings to schedule, ready to action on Monday.

1630 Finish for the day.

1700 Emma has a key role in the Executive Team’s administration at head office.

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XC Life Summer 2011

Back home. Have tea with my partner and then spend time in the garden where I am developing a vegetable patch.

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WIN a superb model train in our wordsearch competition

FOUR prizes including a collector’s item model are up for grabs in our Summer wordsearch. The theme is forms of transport, to reflect Ashley Brown’s volunteering work at Crich Tramway Museum. A Bachmann model of a OO Gauge Class 221 Voyager in CrossCountry livery is on offer together with three High Street vouchers. Entries should arrive no later than 31 July. Only CrossCountry employees are eligible to enter. Simply ring the words in the grid, cut it out and send it with your name, address and phone number to: Lee West, Communications Manager, CrossCountry, 5th Floor, Cannon House, 18 Priory Queensway, Birmingham B4 6BS.

THE WINNERS IN LAST ISSUE WERE: Jonny Alldridge, Driver, Birmingham Wayne Haywood, Driver, Derby Gillian Nevins, Train Manager, Leeds

Please indicate the prize you would like to win in order of preference by putting numbers in the boxes. If the top choice is the model train, write 1 in the box. For your second choice write 2 etc. OO GAUGE CLASS 221 VOYAGER

Name . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Address . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ................................................ . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Tel. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

CAR VAN BOAT TAXI TRAM BARGE COACH LINER LORRY TRAIN WAGON YACHT LANDAU SLEIGH TANDEM BICYCLE PHAETON SCOOTER HORSEBOX AEROPLANE CATAMARAN MOTORBIKE HELICOPTER HOVERCRAFT SNOWMOBILE HOT AIR BALLOON

H S L E I G H N A R A M A T A C

O C E S G O B E F D E P I A K E

V A N O S C O O T E R L M T M G

E D O N N N L Y E D O I N A B R

R I T A O B A Z I R P N R X I A

C U E G W O N A R O L T I I W B

£25 SPA FINDER GIFT CARD £20 H&M GIFT CARD £20 PLAYSTATION NETWORK CARD

R X A Z M I L Y O C A S P A E R

A W H Q O H E L U L N H O P R E

F O P U B Y P O A V E O C L I T

T E K N I R A N E B Y R T A A P

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R I A I L E D C O L R R C N O O

E V M Y E A V A H P B I D A U C

N A T V U O A C W T A E A T R I

I J E K I B R O T O M F I T S L

■ ■ ■ ■

L U O A H A B T O R O L E E O E

B I C Y C L E S X O B E S R O H

Plans to recognise railmen’s wartime contribution CROSSCOUNTRY staff are being asked for their help in identifying, finding and recording all memorials to rail staff who died in World War 1. With the centenary of the start of the conflict not far off in 2014, Customer Services Director Jeremy Higgins is keen to bring interested rail staff together in this project which he hopes will culminate in a series of services or dedication of memorials. Jeremy, who has embarked on a personal quest to find out as much as he can about those who died in the Great War, would like to hear from anyone who feels they can help. At the same time, he is appealing to ex-servicemen among CrossCountry staff, or people with relatives who have served in the Forces, to consider setting down their experiences for posterity. Due to his own regiment’s links with the Imperial War Museum Jeremy can put them in touch with a sound recording archivist who wants to collect modern Forces experiences on tape. Jeremy said: “My interest began when I was standing on Leamington Spa station after returning from service in Iraq. I saw a poster setting out the names of ex-railway soldiers who had died and I realised that nobody knows anything about the people behind the names. “Since then, through research, I have collected more than 12,000 names, together with details of where they served and what their previous job was.” Much of Jeremy’s data has been collected by matching names on railway memorials with details at the Commonwealth War Graves Commission. He added: “Five railwaymen won Victoria Crosses in World War 1. I feel it is important that the vital contribution of rail staff during the conflict should be remembered as we approach the centenary of that war.” Please contact Jeremy on jeremy.higgins@ crosscountrytrains.co.uk XC Life Summer 2011

15


George Pugh working at his computer to digitally restore old photographs.

Matt coaches young golfers

Restoring images to

revive memories G

EORGE Pugh uses computer skills to bring back memories of yesteryear for relatives and friends. The Newcastle Train Manager restores old pictures using digital technology to revive the magic

of family celebrations and achievements. He also gives slide shows at birthday parties, tracking the lives of guests of honour through pictures, many of which he has restored. His proudest restoration is a picture of his mother,

Helen, when she was crowned Miss Celtic in 1959. George also recently prepared pictures for the 75th birthday party of Mary Tweddle, the mother of one of his golfing pals. One of the restored photographs showed Mary in 1966, modelling hot pants. “It’s great to be able to revive memories for the people closest to me,” said George. “They all appreciate seeing the pictures how they originally looked.” W A ‘before and after’ example of how George transforms old photographs – this was one of his mother, who was crowned Miss Celtic in 1959.

You can view all the photographs in this issue and many others we didn’t have room for in the picture gallery on the CrossCountry intranet 16

XC Life Summer 2011

HELPING youngsters learn the art of playing golf is a priority for Matthew Stratford. The Bristol Train Manager is studying for a Level 1 PGA qualification so that he can develop his teaching role at Knowle Golf Club. He has already given useful tips to the youngsters aged six to 17 at the club, where he plays off a handicap of seven. “The qualification will put me in a good position to also help out at county level,” he said.

Geordies win challenge cup NEWCASTLE beat Birmingham 5-2 in the annual Brummie-Geordie football Challenge Cup held at Northumbria University Sports Centre. The trophy was presented in a ceremony afterwards to Tyler, the grandson of Newcastle First Class Host Steve Lowthians.

Call us with your stories IF you have a story for the staff magazine please contact Ron Quenby on 07966 424382 or at ron.quenby@btconnect.com

Published by CrossCountry Communications. Telephone 0121 2006115. communications@crosscountrytrains.co.uk

XC Life Summer 2011  

The magazine for CrossCountry people