Rail jobs, staff issues and training

DfT calls for new technology to transform transport accessibility, but union warns against ‘faceless’ railway

DfT calls for new technology to transform transport accessibility, but union warns against ‘faceless’ railway

14.05.19: The DfT has called for new technologies to revolutionise travel for older people and those with disabilities, but the RMT has “reacted with disgust” to its suggestions that travel apps can replace staff. Jessie Norman, the futur...

Arriva Rail becomes second operator to sue DfT over East Midlands franchise

Arriva Rail becomes second operator to sue DfT over East Midlands franchise

13.05.19: Arriva Rail has launched legal action against the DfT over its handling of the East Midlands rail franchise, the second operator in a week to sue the government. Arriva, owned by Germany’s state-backed Deutsche Bahn, is suing the gove...

NSAR: Tackling the digital skills shortage

NSAR: Tackling the digital skills shortage

13.05.19: The National Skills Academy for Rail (NSAR) chief executive Neil Robertson returns to write for RTM, this time, to assess the digital skills shortage facing the rail sector. How often do you look in the mirror and ask yourself the question:...

RAIB to investigate track worker near miss in Wales

RAIB to investigate track worker near miss in Wales

09.05.19: The RAIB has launched an investigation into a near miss incident where a track worker narrowly avoided being hit by a passenger train. The train was travelling between Dovey Junction and Borth stations at approximately 59mph on 2 April when...

Stagecoach launches legal action against government over rail franchise disqualification

Stagecoach launches legal action against government over rail franchise disqualification

09.05.19: Stagecoach has taken legal action against the DfT over its decision to disqualify the operator from the East Midlands rail franchise. The railway operator claims the government has “breached its statutory duties” in its decision...

Network Rail announces £136m contract winner to manage its road vehicle fleet

Network Rail announces £136m contract winner to manage its road vehicle fleet

08.05.19: Network Rail has awarded a £136m contract to Hitachi Capital to manage its road vehicle fleet for the next four years. The railway infrastructure manager described the road maintenance contract as an “integrated one-stop shop&rd...

Advancing the rail industry with management degree apprenticeships

Advancing the rail industry with management degree apprenticeships

08.05.19: In answering the pressing questions of how current and future generations of managers can provide solutions to high-profile infrastructure projects across the UK, Pearson Business School, part of Pearson College London, offers the Chartered Mana...

RAIB to investigate Welsh runaway train incident

RAIB to investigate Welsh runaway train incident

07.05.19: The RAIB has launched an investigation into a runaway train on the Welsh Highland Railway which passed through level crossings and a train station, and passed signals placed at danger points without authorisation. The light diesel locomotiv...

First new driverless Subway trains arrive in Glasgow for testing

First new driverless Subway trains arrive in Glasgow for testing

07.05.19: The first of Glasgow’s new subway fleet has arrived in Scotland and begun an intensive testing programme in preparation for their launch as the first driverless trains in the UK. Operator Strathclyde Partnership for Transport (SPT) ca...

Stagecoach says it was disqualified because it rejected £1.6bn rail pensions risk

Stagecoach says it was disqualified because it rejected £1.6bn rail pensions risk

03.05.19: Stagecoach has said it was disqualified from three rail franchise competitions because it refused to accept a pensions risk “well in excess of £1bn.” The transport group has said projections offered by the DfT were “...

Crossrail clung to ‘unrealistic’ timeline as contract renegotiations cost an extra £2.5bn, NAO reports

Crossrail clung to ‘unrealistic’ timeline as contract renegotiations cost an extra £2.5bn, NAO reports

03.05.19: Crossrail “clung to an unrealistic view” throughout its delivery and has damaged public value, but is now “past the point of no return” and must focus on meeting its new target, a report from the National Audit Office (NA...

£1.46bn railway arches sale ‘overlooked’ tenants and businesses, says NAO

£1.46bn railway arches sale ‘overlooked’ tenants and businesses, says NAO

02.05.19: Network Rail’s £1.46bn sale of railway arches “overlooked” small firms and businesses operating in the arches, the National Audit Office (NAO) has found. The sale saw 5,261 commercial properties sold to US firm Teler...

London Underground workers to strike over ‘safety-critical cuts’

London Underground workers to strike over ‘safety-critical cuts’

02.05.19: London Underground maintenance and engineering workers are preparing for three-days of strike action in a row over cuts to train preparation and inspection schedules. The RMT said over a thousand of its members will walk out from 17 May to...

London Overground workers prepare for further strike action over ‘insulting’ pay freeze

London Overground workers prepare for further strike action over ‘insulting’ pay freeze

01.05.19: London Overground workers are to stage another walkout over a pay freeze which “effectively means a slide into poverty pay,” the RMT has announced. Members of the union will walk out for 24 hours on 16 May, their second set of i...

RAIB releases safety report after dog killed in train dispatch accident

RAIB releases safety report after dog killed in train dispatch accident

01.05.19: The RAIB has made safety recommendations to a train operator and the Rail Delivery Group after a train dispatch accident resulted in the death of a dog. A passenger and her dog were exiting a train at Elstree and Borehamwood station in Sept...

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Scrap HS2 and use its £56bn budget to fund 28 alternative projects, urges TPA

14/05/2019Scrap HS2 and use its £56bn budget to fund 28 alternative projects, urges TPA

Scrapping the £56bn HS2 project could pave the way for 28 separate local infrastructure schemes to be funded instead with the case “g... more >
DfT calls for new technology to transform transport accessibility, but union warns against ‘faceless’ railway

14/05/2019DfT calls for new technology to transform transport accessibility, but union warns against ‘faceless’ railway

The DfT has called for new technologies to revolutionise travel for older people and those with disabilities, but the RMT has “reacted with... more >
First leg of HS2 ‘passing the point of no return’ due to amount of money already invested, says NAO head

13/05/2019First leg of HS2 ‘passing the point of no return’ due to amount of money already invested, says NAO head

HS2 is on the “verge of passing the point of no return” and the amount of money spent would make scrapping the flagship project &ldqu... 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 sleeper's' daily blog

Making the railways safer and more reliable with Ze-Power

13/05/2019Making the railways safer and more reliable with Ze-Power

Professor Meiling Zhu, chair of mechanical engineering and head of the Energy Harvesting Research Group (EHRG) at the University of Exeter, introduces us to Ze-Power (Zero Power, Large Area Rail Track Monitoring): an innovative Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) funded project aiming to make the railway tracks safer and more reliable. In the UK, rail passengers make around 1.7 billion journeys every year, while 4... more >
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The railway franchising model is broken, and passengers are paying the price

13/05/2019The railway franchising model is broken, and passengers are paying the price

Meg Hillier, MP for Hackney South and Shoreditch and chair of the Public Accounts Committee (PAC), gives her view on the state of the UK’s ... more >
NSAR: Tackling the digital skills shortage

13/05/2019NSAR: Tackling the digital skills shortage

The National Skills Academy for Rail (NSAR) chief executive Neil Robertson returns to write for RTM, this time, to assess the digital skills shor... more >
Delivering cost-effective electrification

13/05/2019Delivering cost-effective electrification

David Clarke, technical director of the Railway Industry Association (RIA), sets out the findings of a new report on how rail electrification can... more >
5G: An opportunity to revolutionise on-train connectivity

13/05/20195G: An opportunity to revolutionise on-train connectivity

Simon Holmes, group head of digital (engineering) at FirstGroup, introduces us to the 5G solution being delivered for the rail sector.  ... more >

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Advancing the rail industry with management degree apprenticeships

08/05/2019Advancing the rail industry with management degree apprenticeships

In answering the pressing questions of how current and future generations of managers can provide solutions to high-profile infrastructure projec... more >