Interviews

01.01.13

A depot for Derby

Source: Rail Technology Magazine Dec/Jan 2013

Network Rail’s East Midlands route managing director Martin Frobisher explains the work behind a new rail maintenance depot planned at Derby.

A new maintenance centre is being planned in Derby at Pride Park to support the electrification of the Midland Main Line. The project brings together six smaller depots around the area, to better plan and resource maintenance operations.

Network Rail has submitted plans to Derby City Council for the new centre.

RTM spoke to Martin Frobisher, East Midlands route managing director, about the new centre, the new practices that would be introduced, and the impact of electrifi cation on the route.

The modern facility includes an increase in offi ce space and will provide a central workplace for up to 400 maintenance staff. Frobisher told RTM: “All the little depots in and around Derby will be consolidated into one modern facility and the people will be based there in the future – it’s great.

“As a project it’s got a great business case because it’s a much more effi cient way of working. It allows us to be much more fl exible in terms of the way we deploy our people. Having everybody in one modern open-plan offi ce improves communication.

“Having one stores facility means we don’t have the same amount of working capital. At the moment we’ve got same components in six little stores; having one big facility is much more efficient.”

Electrification

The plans for the depot were recently resubmitted to account for the High Level Output Statement (HLOS), which announced the electrification of the Midland Main Line.

The updated plans cover the need to create a team to maintain the new assets as Frobisher explained: “It just seemed absolutely crazy for us that we’d build a modern facility and then end up putting some portable cabins up to house the overhead line maintenance team.”

The team will be joined by around 50 new electrifi cation maintenance specialists, and short-term job opportunities will be available during the building phase of the depot.

In terms of integrating the new team together, Frobisher acknowledged that this would take signifi cant consultation, and working carefully with individuals to ensure everything goes smoothly.

He said: “In practice it means moving people out of leaky old portable cabin facilities into a modern state-of-the-art building with good transport connections.”

The move is something that could be replicated across the network, following on best practice from other such consolidations as in the West Midlands and in Gateshead. Frobisher explained that the plans for electrifi cation would mean considerable changes to maintenance procedures.

“As we electrify the line then that means a change from diesel rolling stock to electric rolling stock and therefore on the train operator side there will be some significant changes in terms of maintenance regimes because the rolling stock has changed.

“There are already some good facilities such as at Etches Park at Derby and I’m sure the train operators will be able to adapt to that change and make the changes that are necessary.”

Big changes

He continued: “From our point of view there will be some big changes. If you look at today’s railway on the East Midlands, it’s a diesel railway. The power signal boxes were all built in the 1960s and 1970s. All the interlocking is done through old 1960s electrical relays. Over the course of the next seven years we’re going to modernise that and it’ll all be computer-based system based in the East Midlands Control Centre in Derby.”

Electrification will require new skills to be developed and could offer opportunities through greater passenger demand.

Frobisher said: “We’re growing at 5% per annum on passenger 10% on freight. There’s load of growth, loads of opportunity, with some new skills to learn but we’re up for it.

“We’ve got lots of training to do. We’ve already started. We’ve recognised that we need to get some overhead line electric skills and this year we’re taking on more overhead line apprentices than we ever have in the past because in seven year’s time the people who are apprentices today, will be fully trained and great members of the team.”

Tell us what you think – have your say below, or email us directly at opinion@railtechnologymagazine.com

Comments

There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment

 

rail technology magazine tv

more videos >

latest rail news

Greater Anglia brings in extra support for busy periods

21/11/2019Greater Anglia brings in extra support for busy periods

Office staff at Greater Anglia are being trained to help customers when stations are busy due to big events or disruption. Customer Action T... more >
Greater Anglia announces delays cut by almost half

21/11/2019Greater Anglia announces delays cut by almost half

Between December 2018 and October 2019, delay minutes for its Class 317 commuter trains, which run through Cambridgeshire, Hertfordshire and Esse... more >
Metrolink contactless payment system hits millionth journey

20/11/2019Metrolink contactless payment system hits millionth journey

Transport for Greater Manchester announced today (20th Nov) that at the weekend Metrolink’s contactless payment system hit the million-jour... 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

Maximising efficiency requires investment in data, but it’s rewards for rail could be extensive

14/11/2019Maximising efficiency requires investment in data, but it’s rewards for rail could be extensive

Rail Technology Magazine’s Matt Roberts explains the significant role data can play within the future development of the rail industry. Standing as a cornerstone of the UK transport network, the rail industry is forever striving to innovate and maximise efficiency in all aspects of its work. Data is just one such way of achievi... more >
read more blog posts from 'the sleeper' >

comment

The challenge of completing Crossrail

05/07/2019The challenge of completing Crossrail

With a new plan now in place to deliver Crossrail, Hedley Ayres, National Audit Office manager, major projects and programmes, takes a look at ho... more >
Preparing the industry to deliver trains for the future

04/07/2019Preparing the industry to deliver trains for the future

The move to decarbonise the rail network involves shifting to cleaner modes of traction by 2050. David Clarke, technical director at the Railway ... more >
Sunshine future beckons for South Wales Railways, says 10:10 Climate Action’s Leo Murray

02/07/2019Sunshine future beckons for South Wales Railways, says 10:10 Climate Action’s Leo Murray

Smart electrification is the way to boost clean energy resources, argues Leo Murray, director at 10:10 Climate Action. Contractors are clear... more >
Ambition doesn’t have to be expensive, says Midland Connect's Maria Machancoses

02/07/2019Ambition doesn’t have to be expensive, says Midland Connect's Maria Machancoses

The TCR Midlands conference is only days away and tickets are going fast for the sector event of the year at the Vox Conference Centre in Birming... more >

rail industry focus

  • 15/11/2019A workforce which reflects society

    Loraine Martins MBE, Director of Diversity and Inclusion at Network Rail, joins us in the studio for the third episode of our RTM podcast, talking at...
  • 02/11/2019Monica Barbosa: Women In Rail

    Director of business development and communications at Xrail, Monica Barbosa, thinks women are missing out on exciting opportunities because the...
  • 01/11/2019The dangers of fatigues

    Working long hours, poor health, too little sleep, a demanding job and more can all make us tired and affect our mental and physical performance...
View all News

interviews

Andrew Haines, CE of Network Rail, tells BBC News his organisation could issue future rail franchises

24/06/2019Andrew Haines, CE of Network Rail, tells BBC News his organisation could issue future rail franchises

Andrew Haines, the Chief Executive of Network Rail, has told the Today programme on Radio 4's BBC’s flagship news programme that he wo... more >