Evo 5G On Train

The Rail-5G project to deploy fast onboard Wi-Fi for South Western Railway customers between Basingstoke and Earlsfield has reached a key milestone, with engineers from supplier Evo-Rail and Network Rail installing in late October the first masts for 5G data transmission along the lineside. Access to the 5G-streamed Wi-Fi service is expected to go live in early 2023.

New toilet pod exterior

Northern Trains and Transport for Greater Manchester unveiled a novel accessible toilet pod at Guide Bridge station on November 1. Designed by Seed Architects, it is the first of 83 fully-accessible toilets due to be installed at stations across Greater Manchester in the next three years. Each pod incorporates baby changing facilities. They will be accessible using a radar key, a rail ticket QR code or by requesting from Northern’s customer contact centre over a video link.

South Western Railway and AmeyTPT are inviting charities and community groups in Surrey to submit proposals for the use of redundant space at Witley station. ‘We’re excited to see what ideas community groups can come up with to best use this amazing space, said Paula Aldridge, SWR’s Community Rail Manager. ’If your dreams and schemes are being held back by the lack of a base, tell us how you’d use the space and the best proposal will get to move in and start making their dreams for the local community come true.’

A second cohort of 10 young people has successfully completed training courses at the QTS Rail Skills Academy. Delivered by QTS Training and funded through the East Ayrshire Council’s Young Person Guarantee programme, the scheme covered recognised railway competencies, including PTS and track induction as well as health and safety protocols, handling of tools and small plant, and first aid.

Mike Muldoon-Systra

Mike Muldoon has joined Systra Ltd as Business Development Director for UK & Ireland and a member of the Executive Board. He joins from Alstom, where he was head of Business Development for the UK & Ireland.

Rolling stock leasing and rail services business Porterbrook has appointed Brian Ferguson as General Manager of the Long Marston Rail Innovation Centre, which Porterbrook has been managing since June 2021. He will join in December from Gemini Rail Group, where he is currently Operations Director. As General Manager he will lead all operational aspects of the Long Marston site and oversee the company’s programme of investment. He will also be responsible for Porterbrook’s heavy maintenance and asset protection functions.

AmcoGiffen has opened an office in Warrington to serve as a central hub for its activities in northwest England.

Former East West Railway Co CEO Simon Blanchflower and commercial lawyer Gail Hawthorne have been appointed as non-executive directors of the Global Centre of Rail Excellence, while Celtic Energy Chief Executive Will Watson has stepped down from the same role. Rob Thompson has joined GCRE as Director of Implementation, having served as Operations Director for Celtic Energy, which previously owned the Onllwyn site now being redeveloped to house the railway test track and research facility.