Light rail and trams

£1bn Metro strategy includes new £550m fleet and service expansion

£1bn Metro strategy includes new £550m fleet and service expansion

20.07.16: A new rail strategy for the Metro system, including £1bn investment over the next 20 years and plans to kick-start an expansion scheme, has been approved by the North East Combined Authority (NECA). The ‘Metro and Local Rail Str...

Metrolink expands free travel offer for service personnel

Metrolink expands free travel offer for service personnel

23.06.16: In-uniform service men and women will be able to travel for free on Metrolink, the Manchester tram network announced to mark Armed Forces Day. Metrolink has traditionally offered free travel to personnel on Armed Forces Day, which takes pla...

Midland Metro extension to Wolverhampton approved

Midland Metro extension to Wolverhampton approved

22.06.16: The £18m Midland Metro tram extension to Wolverhampton was given formal approval yesterday by the transport secretary. Work on the extension can now begin later this year, and it is due to open in 2019. The route, part of a &poun...

UK light rail usage at record high

UK light rail usage at record high

09.06.16: Tram usage in England is at a record high, with increased numbers of passenger journeys and vehicle miles, the latest annual figures from the Department for Transport (DfT) show. In 2015-16, the number of passenger journeys increased by 5.8...

Next stage of Midland Metro opens after delays

Next stage of Midland Metro opens after delays

31.05.16: Trams began running across the centre of Birmingham yesterday on the extended Midland Metro, after the launch was delayed due to safety concerns. The first Midland Metro trams, which ran from Bull Street to New Street station and the Grand...

Metrolink keeping a ‘watchful eye’ on tram-train developments

Metrolink keeping a ‘watchful eye’ on tram-train developments

27.05.16: Manchester's Metrolink is keeping a “watchful eye” on the £60m tram-train study in South Yorkshire as it could pave the way for future opportunities and developments for the city’s light rail network, RTM has been to...

Tram passenger satisfaction at record high, but Midland Metro slips

Tram passenger satisfaction at record high, but Midland Metro slips

26.05.16: Tram passenger satisfaction is higher than it has ever been following network improvements, the latest Transport Focus passenger survey has found. The 5,707 tram passengers, surveyed by Transport Focus in autumn 2015, gave the tram network...

McLoughlin overrules planning inspector to give Birmingham tram extension go-ahead

McLoughlin overrules planning inspector to give Birmingham tram extension go-ahead

19.05.16: The Birmingham tram extension from New Street to Centenary Square has gained planning permission after transport secretary Patrick McLoughlin overruled the planning inspector’s decision. McLoughlin said he disagreed with planning insp...

Midland Metro extension introduction delayed over safety concerns

Midland Metro extension introduction delayed over safety concerns

18.05.16: Birmingham’s Midland Metro extension is facing further delays after testing identified safety concerns. Trams were scheduled to run from Bull Street to Stephenson Street from 22 May, but the service has now been put on hold indefinite...

Campaigners urge Sadiq Khan to develop London tram network

Campaigners urge Sadiq Khan to develop London tram network

10.05.16: London’s tram network should be developed along its existing bus routes, campaigners have said as they called on the newly-elected mayor of London to make developing the capital’s tram network a priority. TramForward, the campai...

Trams set to run on Midland Metro extension after safety checks

Trams set to run on Midland Metro extension after safety checks

26.04.16: Birmingham’s Midland Metro tram extension from Birmingham New Street to the city centre is due to run from next week after successfully passing electrical safety checks. The results of the checks are now being reviewed by Midland Metr...

Luton Airport 24-hour light rail link to open in 2020

Luton Airport 24-hour light rail link to open in 2020

18.04.16: London Luton Airport (LLA) has announced plans to build a 24-hour light rail link between the airport and Luton Airport Parkway station. The 1.2 mile long rail link mass passenger transit, similar to those already used at Birmingham and Gat...

Blackpool tram extension comes closer as new terminal building approved

Blackpool tram extension comes closer as new terminal building approved

05.04.16: Plans to buy a building to become the terminal for a new Blackpool tram extension have been approved. Blackpool Council voted in favour of plans to buy the Wilkinson’s building on Talbot Road last night. The £22m extension...

Tyne & Wear Metro to be publicly-run after passengers ‘let down’ by DB Regio

Tyne & Wear Metro to be publicly-run after passengers ‘let down’ by DB Regio

15.03.16: Council leaders in the north east have stated that the seven-year Tyne & Wear Metro contract with DB Regio, which is due to end in March 2017, should not be extended. In a report to the North East Combined Authority (NECA) it was noted...

Leeds could get tram-train link to airport

Leeds could get tram-train link to airport

01.03.16: A tram-train service has been mooted as the preferred option for a direct rail link between Leeds and Leeds Bradford Airport. Engineering consultants WSP/Parsons Brinckerhoff suggested in a draft report submitted to West Yorkshire Combined...

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North of England leaders demand ‘Northern Budget’ to boost region

16/08/2019North of England leaders demand ‘Northern Budget’ to boost region

Key leaders from across the North of England have called for Government commitment to a ‘Northern Budget’ which could be used to deli... more >
Metrolink customers complete 170k trips using contactless system

16/08/2019Metrolink customers complete 170k trips using contactless system

Since its launch four weeks ago, more than 170,000 journeys have been made using the new contactless payment system on the Metrolink network... more >
Government announces £25m Brexit high-speed medicines train

15/08/2019Government announces £25m Brexit high-speed medicines train

In the event of a No Deal Brexit, the Government has announced the setting up of a high-speed train service to ferry medicine to the UK from Fran... 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

Network Rail’s Anna-Jane Hunter on, NPR, TRU, HS2 and supply chain opportunities

12/08/2019Network Rail’s Anna-Jane Hunter on, NPR, TRU, HS2 and supply chain opportunities

Anna- Jane Hunter, is a ‘proud northerner’ and is passionate about continuing the investment and success story of rail across the North.  She plays a key role in working with government and northern leaders to enable the network to carry on thriving. We caught up with Anna-Jane, for her expertise and insight into connecti... more >
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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 >

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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 >