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North west teams triumph in Gen Y Rail final

Two teams from the north west triumphed in the national final of Gen Y Rail, held at Network Rail’s Westwood training facility in Coventry.

In the under-16s category, EBA Bright Lights, an all-girl team from Eaton Bank Academy, took the top honours for their innovative and eco-friendly railway station design.

The team conceded that their design concept had come in a few million over the £30m budget, but they convinced the judges that the money could be recouped from the various revenue generating areas within the station, which included meeting rooms to hire, a cinema and high street stalls.

All the girls from the team said that they had been inspired by the Gen Y events, and at least two of the five-strong team are seriously considering engineering careers following their journey through the competition.

In the over-16s category, where the competition was just as fierce, it was a three-man team from Stockport College who came out on top.

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Total Train Integration came up with a minimalist design concept focused around creating a shopping hub. The design came under budget at £27m, with the opportunity to reduce costs if needs be.

However, the confident presentation to the Dragons’ Den-style panel paid off, as the team also highlighted how important it is to deal with stakeholders at all the critical points in building a new station.

Team members Lewis Rodgers, Alex Robinson and Parsa Jafarian are all studying for their BTEC in Engineering, are also now genuinely considering the opportunities rail has to offer them once they’ve completed their studies.

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Gen Y Rail is a competition launched by the RTM’s UK Rail Industry Training Trust to inspire and engage young people aged 11-19 about the exciting and diverse career opportunities in rail. It has received cross-industry support from rail businesses and educational institutions including Network Rail, Hitachi Rail Europe, Siemens, Northern Rail, Manchester City Council, the Birmingham Centre for Railway Research and Education, Newrail at Newcastle University, Newcastle College, WMG, AECOM, Telent, Pera Training, South West Trains, The Big Bang, Mission Room, Manchester Metropolitan University, HS2 and many more.

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Nick Spall, route delivery director LNW (N) at Network Rail and one of the judges for the final, said: “It has been a cracking day and it has been great to see so much youthful enthusiasm and creativity. It was really hard to judge.

“Hopefully it has inspired a few of them to consider a career in rail. It was certainly heartening to see so many girls taking a keen interest in the events, but all-round the event has been fantastic.

“I certainly hope that Gen Y Rail can catch on and it is essential to trying to catch the interest of the youngsters – who will be delivering the rail programmes of the future – at an early age.”

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Full coverage of the Gen Y Rail final will be in the June/July edition of Rail Technology Magazine. 

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Above: The winners with Nick Spall (left) and Roy Rowlands (right), Trustee of the UK Rail Industry Training Trust and Gen Y Rail organiser.

The finalists were:

North East 

On the train of thought – Framwellgate 

Bright Sparks – Oxclose Community Academy 

Wild Cats – Queen Elizabeth College 

Trainiacs – Stockton Sixth Form College 

North West 

EBA Bright Lights – Eaton Bank Academy

Chorlton Carriages – Chorlton High School  

Total Train Integration – Stockport College 

Stock-portables – Stockport College 

West Midlands 

Team Bruce Wayne – Adcote School For Girls 

3 Amigos – William Brookes School 

Team 13 – William Brookes School 

The Future – Sandwell College 

4 Lions – City College Coventry 

East Midlands 

West Park School 

Bemrose School 

Derby College

Tell us what you think – have your say below or email [email protected]


Sherry   27/06/2014 at 22:14

I'm so proud of you Parsa . You are the future ..........

Sherry   29/06/2014 at 07:45

I'm so proud of you Parsa . You are the future ..........

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