Light rail and trams

Blackpool Tramway extension: What's in store

Blackpool Tramway extension: What's in store

24.11.17: Cllr Gillian Campbell, deputy leader of Blackpool Council, outlines the proposals for the extension to the existing tramway from North Pier to Blackpool North railway station. Blackpool is undergoing major regeneration between 2017 and 2019...

Metrolink: 25 years and counting

Metrolink: 25 years and counting

02.11.17: Danny Vaughan, head of Metrolink at Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM), celebrates the network’s 25-year anniversary, which comes packed with expansion promises to further improve connections in the region. In Metrolink’s S...

Contractors invited to tender for £165m Edinburgh tram extension

Contractors invited to tender for £165m Edinburgh tram extension

30.10.17: Edinburgh City Council has started its search for contractors to deliver the city’s major tram extension. Tendering has begun on the project, which has been divided into two lots: lot 1 - the infrastructure and systems contract, and lot 2...

Nexus to lead north east bid for 5G connectivity testbed

Nexus to lead north east bid for 5G connectivity testbed

26.09.17: Transport authorities in the north east have today voiced their ambition to set up a national testbed for 5G connectivity in the region. In a bid to establish the area as a leader for 5G in England, the North East Combined Authority (NECA)...

Delayed Sheffield tram-train starts services on light rail network

Delayed Sheffield tram-train starts services on light rail network

15.09.17: The delay-hit tram-train project has finally reached an important landmark as it launched its first passenger service yesterday. Rail minister Paul Maynard was in attendance with transport leaders from across Sheffield to introduce the firs...

Tram-train: where did we go wrong?

Tram-train: where did we go wrong?

14.09.17: Andrew Braddock, chairman of the Light Rail Transit Association (LRTA), argues against the ‘not invented here’ syndrome that has kept the UK from implementing a tram-train scheme quickly and successfully. The majority of tramway...

Lack of communication main reason key Leeds transport projects failed

Lack of communication main reason key Leeds transport projects failed

13.09.17: A lack of communication with vital partners and the public was a key reason for the failure of Leeds’ New Generation Transport and Supertram projects, a report has this week revealed. Publishing its draft report, the council’s i...

Iconic Birmingham statue makes way for start of tram expansion project

Iconic Birmingham statue makes way for start of tram expansion project

06.09.17: The Midland Metro tram expansion has taken a key step forward as one of Birmingham’s iconic landmarks, the Iron: Man, was lifted out of Victoria Square to make way for construction. Two cranes were used to raise the six-tonne metal sc...

Midland Metro extension work to start ‘within weeks’ as DfT funds secured

Midland Metro extension work to start ‘within weeks’ as DfT funds secured

01.09.17: The Midland Metro expansion that will link Birmingham city centre with Edgbaston has been given the green light by government after the project’s funding was formally confirmed. The 2km-long extension, which forms the last stretch of...

Work begins to transform Crumpsall Metrolink stop ahead of £350m expansion

Work begins to transform Crumpsall Metrolink stop ahead of £350m expansion

25.08.17: Work to transform the Crumpsall Metrolink stop ahead of the operator’s £350m expansion to Trafford Park has started this week. The stop will undergo a significant upgrade as the new six stop line is planned to run direct from in...

TfGM starts search for Metrolink renewals and enhancements partners

TfGM starts search for Metrolink renewals and enhancements partners

04.08.17: TfGM has today announced that it is taking a “very different approach” to its procurement strategy as it announced the start of the competition for Metrolink Renewals and Enhancements Framework contracts. The light rail operator...

Nexus starts work on £5.5m Tyne and Wear bridge replacement

Nexus starts work on £5.5m Tyne and Wear bridge replacement

02.08.17: Major work has begun this week to replace a rail bridge that serves the Tyne and Wear Metro service. Nexus, the operator who runs light rail in the region, said that the bridge over Killingworth Road in the Gosforth area had now been remove...

TfGM award contract for Trafford Park extension

TfGM award contract for Trafford Park extension

12.07.17: TfGM has revealed that the contract to extend the Metrolink network has been awarded to MPact Thales (MPT) and WSP. MPT, a consortium of Laing O’Rourke, VolkerRail and Thales, will again collaborate to design and construct the new lin...

Costs of Sheffield tram-train pilot soar to five times its original budget

Costs of Sheffield tram-train pilot soar to five times its original budget

04.07.17: The costs of the beleaguered Sheffield tram-train project are expected to have run over five times the original budget after months of delays and uncertainty, a scathing report has today revealed. Releasing its independent findings, the Nat...

WMCA submits £200m Midland Metro expansion plans to DfT

WMCA submits £200m Midland Metro expansion plans to DfT

26.06.17: Ambitious £200m plans to expand the Midland Metro network have been presented to the DfT. Following Transport for West Midlands (TfWM) taking over the running for the service from National Express in March, mayor of the West Midlands...

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Potential Leicester to Coventry rail link mulled over in updated Leicestershire transport vision

22/02/2019Potential Leicester to Coventry rail link mulled over in updated Leicestershire transport vision

The potential of a Leicester to Coventry rail link has been revived again as one of the key highlights of a new transport masterplan outlined by ... more >
Queues of 15,000 and Eurostar chaos at St Pancras in no-deal Brexit

22/02/2019Queues of 15,000 and Eurostar chaos at St Pancras in no-deal Brexit

Eurostar queues of up to 15,000 passengers could mount up at London’s St Pancras International station in the event of a no-deal Brexit, ac... more >
New head of safety and environment for Hull Trains announced

21/02/2019New head of safety and environment for Hull Trains announced

A new head of safety and environment has been announced by Hull Trains, with Mark Shepherd due to replace Phil Green in the role. Bringing m... 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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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 >