James Howles moves to BakerHicks
James HowlesBakerHicks, the multidisciplinary design and engineering business previously known as Morgan Sindall Professional Services, has appointed James Howles as sector director for Rail. James is tasked with expanding and diversifying the company’s rail portfolio, which includes some the UK’s largest and most complex overground and underground rail projects.

He joins BakerHicks from SNC-Lavalin, where he was director for rail infrastructure with a focus on the electrification market. He has been working in the rail industry since joining AMEC-Spie (now Colas Rail) in 2003, subsequently going on to deliver a number of complex, high value rail projects for White Young Green and AECOM, both in the UK and Europe.

He brings invaluable expertise gained on the Great Western Electrification, Midland Mainline Electrification and North West Power Supply Upgrade programmes. He has also been involved in significant projects for Network Rail, London Underground, contractors and consultants involving stations, route works, gauging and safety critical surveys.

Alstom completes UK & Ireland senior management team
Alstom has announced three promotions to complete its senior management team.

Susan Evans is promoted to managing director, urban & services. She will take her experience from the Nottingham Tram Extension and apply it across Alstom’s Transport for London, Dublin and other urban businesses. She will also have responsibility for championing diversity and women in rail within Alstom UK & Ireland.

Piers Wood has been promoted to managing director, regional and intercity. He takes on responsibility for maintaining Virgin Trains’ fleet of Alstom-built Pendolinos used on the West Coast Mainline, as well as other major maintenance contracts. Piers also has responsibility for bidding for new rolling stock orders in the UK, and will be investigating the introduction of Alstom’s new hydrogen train technologies to the UK.

Jason Baldock is promoted to director of high speed rail. As HS2 moves closer to reality, Jason will be leading Alstom’s bidding team.

New officer for North Staffordshire Community Rail Partnership
Marika LathamMarika Latham has joined the North Staffordshire Community Rail Partnership (NSCRP) as its community rail partnership officer.

The post Marika stepped into on 20th March up is unique. NSCRP, which has been working in partnership with East Midlands trains for many years, has recently also joined forces with London Midland who are providing additional funding to the community rail partnership. She will therefore be working for half her time with NSCRP and extending her role to Staffordshire stations operated by London Midland.

Marika is no stranger to the partnership. She has been one of the very successful team of station adopters at Uttoxeter, where she also served as the co-ordinator of the Uttoxeter & District Forum 50 plus Group.



All change at the head of South West Trains
Margaret KaySouth West Trains managing director Christian Roth has stepped down after nearly a decade with the business and Margaret Kay, managing director of Stagecoach Supertram, has been appointed to the post for the remainder of the current franchise, which runs until summer 2017.

Margaret has worked for Stagecoach since 2000, initially as HR director for South West Trains and then East Midlands Trains, before taking up the position as managing director of Stagecoach Supertram in 2012. She was named one of the UK rail industry’s most inspirational women in the most recent Women in Rail survey. Tim Bilby, currently Supertram’s head of finance and commercial, will become interim managing director of Stagecoach Supertram.

Tim Shoveller, managing director of Stagecoach Group’s UK Rail Division, said: “Margaret is one of the most talented executives in the UK rail industry and is a tremendous role model and mentor for the next generation of young managers.”


Nomad Digital names new CEO
Reece DonovanReece Donovan, Nomad Digital’s chief operating officer, has been appointed CEO from 1st March 2017, following the departure of Andrew Taylor.

Reece has been leading Nomad’s global delivery and operational functions over the last three years, and his appointment as CEO has been part of an active succession planning exercise, signifying a key internal career progression for this important role.

During the last four years, and as part of Nomad’s corporate strategy, Andrew has focused on both developing and strengthening Nomad’s overall business, and through the completion of the Alstom acquisition has established a very secure and prosperous future for the business.

Dominique Heynard, chairman of the board of Nomad Digital, said “In Reece, we have a strong and highly-respected leader, who has in-depth knowledge of the business, deep customer understanding and the technical breadth to take Nomad forward in its next stage of development and growth.”


Head chosen for National College for High Speed Rail
Jackie GrubbJackie Grubb is to become principal of the new £40m National College for High Speed Rail, which is due to open in September 2017 and will provide state-of-the-art training facilities on new campuses in Birmingham and Doncaster.

The two college campuses will each specialise in different disciplines with Doncaster focusing on rolling stock, track systems and power, and Birmingham on civil engineering, command, control and communications.

With more than 30-years of experience working in further education, including substantial experience in senior positions within the sector, Jackie will oversee the training provision for around 1,300 learners annually in preparation for the construction of HS2, which begins this year.

Jackie began work as a lecturer and has since taken on a variety of senior roles including director at Swindon College, and deputy principal at Basingstoke College of Technology.