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14.09.16

Rail Forum East Midlands elects new chair and first president

Rail Forum East Midlands (RFEM) has elected a new chair, whilst the outgoing chair has become its first president.

Members of the RFEM, which brings together rail businesses and local and national government in the Midlands, elected Paul Francis (pictured), the managing director of Porterbrook, as their new chair at their AGM on 31 August.

Francis replaces Colin Walton, who served as chair for over 10 years and was unanimously elected to the new role of RFEM president.

Francis said: “I would like to congratulate Colin on his election as Rail Forum President and I am very pleased that he has agreed to continue working with our members to promote the East Midland’s rail industry.

“Transport Secretary Chris Grayling MP recently called our region ‘Britain’s transport engine room’. And so it is. As chair of the Rail Forum I am determined that we will build on this reputation by helping to grow skills; stimulate innovation and increase exports; so that the East Midlands rail industry can lead the way in delivering post Brexit prosperity.”

Francis is also a council member for the Railway Supply Group, a board director at the National Skills Academy for Rail, and a governor of the Derby Manufacturing University Technical College.

Walton is a former chair of Bombardier and inaugural chair of the Local Enterprise Partnership for Derby and Derbyshire and Nottingham and Nottinghamshire.

As RFEM president, he will provide advice and support to the new chair and represent RFEM in rail industry forums.

(Image c. RFEM)

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