Awards, contracts & appointments

DfT denies ‘experimenting’ with new East Coast Partnership, promises better franchise bids assessment

DfT denies ‘experimenting’ with new East Coast Partnership, promises better franchise bids assessment

27.11.18: The DfT has defended its reportedly experimental plans for the refreshed East Coast Main Line franchise, arguing that its process for assessing bids is now “more robust” after a critical report into the failings that led to the colla...

Thameslink director appointed as East West Rail’s first CEO

Thameslink director appointed as East West Rail’s first CEO

23.11.18: East West Rail has announced its first chief executive as Simon Blanchflower, the programme director for Thameslink. Blanchflower will lead the East West Railway Company through its next phase of development, delivering a new railway l...

Network Rail seeks £45m integration partner for ECML digital railway

Network Rail seeks £45m integration partner for ECML digital railway

20.11.18: Network Rail has today launched the search for a private-sector partner to deliver a major digital railway transformation across the East Coast Main Line (ECML). In September, Network Rail launched the procurement for a long-term train...

Wales and Borders rail to receive £2bn government funding

Wales and Borders rail to receive £2bn government funding

19.11.18: Network Rail Wales and Borders has announced £2bn in government funding to be spent on a project to maintain and renew the Wales and Border railway routes. The funding represents a 28% funding increase compared to the last five-year f...

Talgo names Fife as the chosen site of its first UK train factory

Talgo names Fife as the chosen site of its first UK train factory

14.11.18: Spanish train manufacturer Talgo has revealed that is new train-building factory will be built at Longannet in Fife, bringing more than 1,000 jobs to Scotland. Talgo will build its first UK manufacturing base at the site of a decommissioned...

Crossrail contractors in row over overtime pay

Crossrail contractors in row over overtime pay

14.11.18: A pay row has broken out over overtime payments for contractors working on the Elizabeth Line as it raced to get the project finished on time. TfL and Crossrail are said to be questioning bills from contracts after workers undertook overnig...

Arcadis lands £7m Old Oak Common HS2 station systems design deal

Arcadis lands £7m Old Oak Common HS2 station systems design deal

13.11.18: Arcadis Consulting has been awarded a £7m contract to design the rail systems at the new Old Oak Common HS2 station. The contract encompasses the design services for the railway systems in and around the proposed station and integrate...

Labour call for renationalisation ahead of Scottish Parliament vote on ScotRail contract

Labour call for renationalisation ahead of Scottish Parliament vote on ScotRail contract

12.11.18: Scotland’s government is set to vote on the future of ScotRail’s train services amidst calls from Labour to renationalise the franchise. MSPs are due to vote on Wednesday on whether the government should enforce a break clause i...

Siemens CEO says it is ‘willing to make concessions’ to secure EU approval for Alstom merger

Siemens CEO says it is ‘willing to make concessions’ to secure EU approval for Alstom merger

09.11.18: The chief executive of Siemens has said he is “willing to make concessions” if necessary in order to gain EU approval for its proposed rail merger with Alstom. Joe Kaeser, head of the German rail giant speaking at Siemens’...

HS2 engineering consultancy relocates to new £7m Birmingham headquarters

HS2 engineering consultancy relocates to new £7m Birmingham headquarters

06.11.18: The engineering company responsible of the redesign and delivery of HS2’s Curzon Street Station has completed its relocation into its new £7m Birmingham headquarters. WSP, a global engineering consultancy, moved over 700 staff f...

High Court ruling awards Siemens £1.5bn Underground contract

High Court ruling awards Siemens £1.5bn Underground contract

06.11.18: Siemens has won a £1.5bn contract with London Underground to replace some of its oldest trains with almost 100 new models after a High Court ruling lifted the suspension on the contract. London Underground originally awarded the contr...

Northern Rail and German owner in crisis talks with government over risk of £282m bailout

Northern Rail and German owner in crisis talks with government over risk of £282m bailout

05.11.18: Northern Rail are locked in crisis talks with the government along with its owner, Germany’s nationalised train operator Deutsche Bahn, as massive levels of disruption cripple the rail franchise’s finances. The Telegraph reveale...

Council launches campaign to extend Crossrail to Southend-on-Sea

Council launches campaign to extend Crossrail to Southend-on-Sea

01.11.18: A council campaign to get Crossrail extended to Southend and for a further river crossing east of the Lower Thames crossing has been kick-started. Southend-on-Sea Borough Council has unveiled its five-year draft plan outlining its ambitions...

EU Commission sends out antitrust warning over Siemens-Alstom merger

EU Commission sends out antitrust warning over Siemens-Alstom merger

01.11.18: The EU Commission has sent a series of objections to Siemens and Alstom over their plans for a European railway merger, increasing the possibility of substantial asset sales needed to secure EU approval. The move by the European Union&rsquo...

HS2 begins consultation for contractors to build £3.5bn western leg of Phase Two

HS2 begins consultation for contractors to build £3.5bn western leg of Phase Two

30.10.18: HS2 has started contractor consultations for Phase 2a to build the high-speed railway between the West Midlands and Crewe. The largely rural route forms the first part of the western leg of HS2 Phase Two and is expected to cost £3.5bn...

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‘Time is running out’: MSP and union leaders call for government intervention into Springburn depot

19/02/2019‘Time is running out’: MSP and union leaders call for government intervention into Springburn depot

Scottish Labour and union leaders have called on the government to take the Springburn depot under public control as ministers debate the depot&r... more >
South Western Railway strikes suspended after ‘significant breakthrough’ in guard dispute

19/02/2019South Western Railway strikes suspended after ‘significant breakthrough’ in guard dispute

Strike action by workers on the South Western Railway (SWR) have been suspended after a “significant breakthrough” was made in the lo... more >
MPs make joint-pledge to back rail investment in Liverpool Manchester corridor in Parliament

19/02/2019MPs make joint-pledge to back rail investment in Liverpool Manchester corridor in Parliament

More than 20 MPs from Liverpool and Manchester have signed a commitment to support rail investment in the north west. The pledge, which was ... more >

editor's comment

23/01/2018Out with the old...

Despite a few disappointing policy announcements, especially for the electrification aficionados amongst us, 2017 was, like Darren Caplan writes on page 20, a year generally marked by positive news for the rail industry. We polished off the iconic Ordsall Chord (p32), hit some solid milestones on Thameslink (p40), progressed on ambitious rolling stock orders (p16), and finally started moving forward on HS2 (p14) ‒ paving the way for a New Ye... read more >

last word

Encouraging youngsters to be safe on the railway

Encouraging youngsters to be safe on the railway

This summer, Arriva Group's CrossCountry and the Scout Association joined to launch a new partnership to promote rail safety among young people. Chris Leech MBE, business community manager at the... more > more last word articles >

'the sleepers' daily blog

Williams Rail Review: The end of saying sorry?

05/02/2019Williams Rail Review: The end of saying sorry?

Keith Williams’ ongoing Rail Review presents a golden opportunity to rebuild the industry’s weakened relationship with its users and set it on a better track for the future, argues David Sidebottom, passenger director at Transport Focus. Passengers waiting at stations today are not peering down the line looking for a strategy ... more >
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TrackWater: Embracing data in flood prevention

05/02/2019TrackWater: Embracing data in flood prevention

Mike Harding, from Lancaster University’s Data Science Institute, introduces us to TrackWater: an innovative project between Lancaster Univ... more >
High-speed rail cannot stand in isolation

05/02/2019High-speed rail cannot stand in isolation

Last year, the Scottish Government announced two feasibility studies to better understand the economic and environmental implications of options ... more >
Flying Banana reaps the fruit of its labour

05/02/2019Flying Banana reaps the fruit of its labour

Steve Quinby, Network Rail’s head of data collection, gives us the rundown on the state-of-the-art ‘Flying Banana’ train. ... more >
Introducing the new Passenger Assist app

05/02/2019Introducing the new Passenger Assist app

Jacqueline Starr, managing director of customer experience at the Rail Delivery Group, explains how a new app developed for the rail industry wil... more >

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interviews

TfN Strategic Transport Plan: not just for transport's sake

22/01/2019TfN Strategic Transport Plan: not just for transport's sake

Peter Molyneux, Transport for the North’s (TfN’s) strategic roads director, has been leading on the development of the seven economic... more >