Chris Burchell to chair the RDG
Chris BurchellThe managing director for UK Trains at Arriva, Chris Burchell, has been appointed chairman of the Rail Delivery Group (RDG) and will take up the role in January. He succeeds the previous chairman Martin Griffiths, chief executive of Stagecoach Group, who has chaired the RDG Board for three years.

Chris began his railway career as area production manager at Railtrack, and after a stint as business implementation manager at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office worked as director of operations at Thames Trains. He was managing director at Southern Railway between 2004 and 2014 before taking up his current full-time role at Arriva. He was also chair of the railway industry’s cross-industry National Task Force between 2010 and 2016.

Chris Burchell said: “The RDG exists to enable train companies and Network Rail to succeed in transforming and delivering the modern, successful railway that Britain needs and wants, and I am proud to have been asked to lead its important work delivering that.”

Richardo expands US presence
Brian RuddyRicardo Rail has welcomed Brian Ruddy to the new role of business development manager for the US, where he will focus specifically on the American domestic market. Brian joins Ricardo from ERICO International and brings more than 18 years’ experience of the US rail industry. During this period he has built an impressive network of contacts at both boardroom and operational level.

As business development manager, Brian will oversee the establishment of a full service portfolio in the US, including technical consultancy, independent assurance and technology products.

He will be able to draw upon domain expertise from Ricardo’s Rail Technical Centres across Europe and Asia. Meanwhile, the US team expects to be recruiting specialists in safety, rolling stock, signalling, RAMS and human factors, amongst others, to support US industry clients.

Brian will be based at the Chicago Technical Centre in Burr Ridge, Illinois

Andy Hayes takes on a new challenge
Andy HayesAndy Haynes has moved from the post of project director on Network Rail’s Greater West Programme to take a new lead as the company’s contracts and procurement director.

Andy has extensive experience working in Network Rail, having been with the business for over 16 years. He has acquired a wealth of knowledge from a range of procurement, finance and delivery roles. Most recently he has safely delivered major track and signalling projects on Western Route, and has been accountable for the commercial strategies and procurement of Crossrail surface works and Reading station.

Andy is now a member of the Route Services senior management team, and reports directly to Susan Cooklin. On his appointment she said: “I am delighted Andy is joining Route Services to manage our commercial contracts and build stronger supplier relationships.”

Andy will lead the delivery of route services’ contracts to bring a more efficient national service to Network Rail’s devolved route businesses.

Northern’s new head of trains takes up post
Ian HydeIan Hyde, who was appointed head of new trains at Northern last month, has taken on responsibility for overseeing the construction and rollout of 281 new carriages due to arrive on the Northern network from late 2018 onwards. He will also oversee the complete refurbishment of all other Northern carriages.

Having begun his career as an assistant engineer for British Railways in the early 1990s, he has worked exclusively in the rail industry, most recently as professional head of engineering for Cross Country. Ian has first-hand knowledge of what it takes to put a new train together and get it on the tracks ready for service. However, it is his 25 years in fleet management, train design, operation and maintenance, and his track record of delivering new train projects across Europe, India, China and Japan, that make him ideally suited for heading Northern’s modernisation programme. His main goal, he says, is to ensure the delivery of an improved environment for rail travellers and to do so on time.

Michael Colella returns to rail consultancy
Michael ColellaInternational transport consultancy, Steer Davies Gleave, has appointed Michael Colella as associate director based in London, to develop the business’s rail and transport capabilities.

Michael joins from TfL where he has worked on a number of high profile rail projects.

As a HS2 lead sponsor he coordinated and led TfL’s input into the project. Prior to that, as a Crossrail commercial sponsor for TfL and the Department for Transport, he played a key role in developing the Crossrail business case, including the assessment tools for Wider Economic Impacts and financing for the £14.5bn project. He has also been responsible for developing TfL’s £8bn pa business plan, and leading the commercial negotiations for the transfer of London Overground from the UK Government to TfL.

Before TfL, Michael worked at the UK Strategic Rail Authority, Stagecoach Plc and international transport consultancies on a range issues relating to UK rail franchises and light rail schemes.

Siemens UK brings in rail industry leader
Vernon BarkerVernon Barker will be joining Siemens UK in early 2017 as managing director of the Rail Systems business, where he will succeed Steve Scrimshaw.

Vernon has a proven track record in railway management with a strong focus on safety and customer service. After over 15 years in senior managerial roles within First Group’s rail businesses, including managing director of UK Rail, Vernon has been running his own consultancy for the past year providing high level strategic counsel to the rail industry. He is currently working with Transport for the North as Northern Powerhouse Rail Director. His early career was in financial consultancy, but he moved to the rail sector in 1990 and was awarded an OBE in 2011 for services to the industry.

In his new role, he will lead the Rail Systems business in the UK, overseeing some 850 employees, contracts with nine different operators, and maintenance activities at eight Siemens-built train care facilities as well as a number of shared facilities.