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At last, an (unofficial) plan!

Following recent editorials entitled ‘Where’s the plan’ and ‘There is no plan’, this issue also focuses on the need for one. In doing so we make no apologies for emphasising the need for a whole system plan to engineer the railway of the future. In May 2021, the Williams-Shapps report...

Locomotion opens New Hall

A brand new £8 million collections building opened on 24 May at Locomotion in Shildon, County Durham, just in time for the late May Bank Holiday. This is the museum’s most significant regeneration project since it opened 20 years ago, and it is now the largest undercover collection of historic...

A credible, pragmatic plan

The title of the Railway Industry Association’s (RIA) report ‘Delivering a lower cost, higher performing net zero railway by 2050’ is a bit of a mouthful. Yet it illustrates how, with the right strategic guidance, the railway can simultaneously deliver a cost-effective railway that offers its customers better performing...

Battery electric and battery hybrid trains

There has been much publicity over the last few months about the use of batteries as a propulsion energy source on trains. For example, in the UK, the first modern battery powered passenger train entered service on the extension from Kirkby to Headbolt Lane on 7 October 2023; Rail...

Enhancing power distribution through improved manufacturing

The rail industry plays a pivotal role in modern transportation systems, providing a sustainable and efficient means of moving people and goods. Reliable power distribution solutions are at the heart of the industry, ensuring the safe and efficient operation of trains and related infrastructure. In recent years, improved manufacturing techniques...

Siemens inclined OLE

The cost of electrification significantly constrains the expansion of the UK’s electrified railway network. Rail Engineer has reported on various worthwhile initiatives to reduce the cost of electrification as, for example, in our ‘Making electrification affordable’ feature in Issue 106 (May/June 2022). In this issue we are pleased to report...

Paving the way in European electrification

As governments and commercial enterprises focus on reaching ambitious sustainability targets, rail electrification is an issue at the forefront of decision-makers’ minds both in the UK and Europe. That said, the rollout is not without its challenges. Despite investing in the electrification of more than 2,000km of track since 2010,...

West Country signalling upgrades

Several recent articles in the railway press have reported on the closure of three mechanical signalboxes in Cornwall as part of an upgrade scheme. Much has been made of the traditional GW lower quadrant signals being replaced with just a touch of sentimentality associated with that. Yet none of...

Hope Valley Railway Upgrade

Hope Valley is a trans-Pennine railway line between Sheffield and Manchester which dissects the scenic Peak District National Park. The route connects Liverpool, Warrington, and Manchester Airport to the West and Nottingham, Norwich, and Cleethorpes to the East. Rail traffic on the route is mixed and the train service...

HS2: Progress on a grand scale

HS2 is the biggest construction project in the UK. David Shirres’ article in Issue 207 (March/April 2024) discussed many of its key features including 32 miles of tunnels (five bored and five ‘cut and cover’), together with 50 major viaducts including 11 viaducts just for the delta junction to...

GeoAccess: Earthwork examinations

Rob Fisher It is a late December morning. The sky is a leaden-grey, the temperature is in single digits, it is starting to rain and the wind makes it feel a lot colder. A GeoAccess earthwork examiner starts up the GISmapp application and opens up the record of the first...