Louise Cheeseman

UK: Louise Cheeseman stepped down as Managing Director of FirstGroup’s open access operator Hull Trains on July 12, ahead of joining Transport for London as Director of Buses on August 2.

Andy Mellors, Managing Director of Non-Franchised Businesses for the parent company’s First Rail business unit, will lead the operator while a successor is found.

Cheeseman joined the rail industry as a guard at Hull Trains in 2001, and has held operations and safety roles with Arriva Trains Northern, Keolis Amey Docklands and RATP Metrolink. She has headed Hull Trains since June 2018.

‘During Louise’s time as Managing Director she successfully oversaw the introduction of a new fleet of state-of-the-art bimode trains, significantly improving reliability and transforming the customer experience’, said First Rail Managing Director Steve Montgomery.

‘She also guided the business safely through the uncertainty of coronavirus, including a successful return to service following a period when we had to suspend operations. Louise leaves Hull Trains in a strong position and I’d like to thank her for her significant contribution to the business.’

Gareth Powell, Managing Director of Surface Transport at TfL, said ‘Louise’s proven track record of success in operations and people leadership stood out in a high-calibre field of candidates.’

Cheeseman said ‘I am immensely proud to be joining TfL, an iconic organisation I have long admired. The opportunity to run the London bus network, the beating heart of the capital’s transport system, is enormously exciting and I can’t wait to get started.’