BSL totem

South Western Railway is undertaking a six-month test at London Waterloo station with technology which converts live journey information into British Sign Language shown through a figure on digital totem screens from LB Foster’s Inform Media. ‘Public transport can present many barriers for deaf people and people with hearing loss, with live information such as platform changes often communicated over a speaker system’, said Teri Devine, Director for Inclusion at hearing loss charity RNID.

Palace of Westminster clock tower.

The Railway Industry Association has submitted six recommendations to HM Treasury’s consultation on the Spring Budget, which is scheduled to be announced by Chancellor Jeremy Hunt on March 15. RIA calls for investment pipeline certainty and transparency; investment in major infrastructure projects; decarbonisation and green growth; getting on with rail reform; unlocking innovation; and growing UK rail exports.

Image of CrossCountry train going through Worcestershire Parkway

On February 2 CrossCountry announced the secondment of John Robson to Regional Director for East Midlands & East Anglia ’in a bid to further strengthen the regional leadership team and reflect the current business and industry priorities’. He is succeeded as Regional Director for West Midlands & North West by Nick Chadwick, previously Regional Driver Manager for the West Midlands & North West.

GTR Thameslink train and passengers (Photo GTR)

Ralph Pidsley has been appointed Chief Financial Officer at Govia Thameslink Railway, after holding the position on an interim basis. Chris Fowler, previously Customer Services Director at Southern & Gatwick Express, has become Network Operations Director, a joint position between GTR and Network Rail. Sophie Hill has become Head of Gatwick Express, succeeding Stephen MacCallaugh who becomes Head of Stations for Southern.

Siemens plc has been fined £1·4m with costs of £99 285 after pleading guilty to an offence under the Health & Safety at Work Act 1974. This follows a prosecution brought by the Office of Rail & Road after a self-employed contractor was killed by a falling traction motor during maintenance work on June 13 2017. ORR’s investigation found defects in task planning, including a failure to carry out an appropriate task-specific risk assessment and a lack of clear allocation of responsibility for supervision of the task.

TfL Image - Elizabeth line train at Heathrow

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan is to extend staff free travel to all sub-contracted cleaners on TfL sponsored services, including the Elizabeth Line and London Overground. ‘This is another step in the right direction by the Mayor of London and we’re calling on him to extend it to all TfL sub-contracted workers’, said General Secretary of the RMT union Mick Lynch on February 2.

Greater Anglia car park

Greater Anglia has reduced car parking costs at 14 stations in a three-month trial which aims to attract people back to rail.

Will Wilson

Former Siemens Mobility UK Chief Executive Will Wilson has joined Global Centre of Rail Excellence Ltd as an independent non-executive director. ‘We must increase the pace of innovation and bring new ideas and new technologies to market faster’, he said. ‘That’s one of the critical areas in which the GCRE facility can help and one of the major attractions for me of joining the board.’