David Shirres BSc CEng MIMechE DEM

SPECIALIST AREAS
Rolling stock, depots, Scottish and Russian railways


David Shirres joined British Rail in 1968 as a scholarship student and graduated in Mechanical Engineering from Sussex University. He has also been awarded a Diploma in Engineering Management by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers.

His roles in British Rail included Maintenance Assistant at Slade Green, Depot Engineer at Haymarket, Scottish DM&EE Training Engineer and ScotRail Safety Systems Manager.

In 1975, he took a three-year break as a volunteer to manage an irrigation project in Bangladesh.

He retired from Network Rail in 2009 after a 37-year railway career. At that time, he was working on the Airdrie to Bathgate project in a role that included the management of utilities and consents. Prior to that, his roles in the privatised railway included various quality, safety and environmental management posts.

David was appointed Editor of Rail Engineer in January 2017 and, since 2010, has written many articles for the magazine on a wide variety of topics including events in Scotland, rail innovation and Russian Railways. In 2013, the latter gave him an award for being its international journalist of the year.

He is also an active member of the IMechE’s Railway Division, having been Chair and Secretary of its Scottish Centre.

Latest Articles

Changing Times

When China imposed a lockdown on the 11 million residents of Wuhan in January, few imagined that a London lockdown would follow two months...

What is the judicious mix?

The Rail Engineer feature “Getting electrification done: the net-zero imperative” with its electrification map attracted a great deal of interest. An updated version of...

Unlocking innovation online

Last year’s Leeds Digital Festival saw 25,000 attendees across 240 events with 750 speakers in 96 venues. The event was to be even bigger...

Rail decarbonisation update

The feature in our March issue that considered the electrification required for a zero-carbon railway attracted a great deal of interest. This included a...

Respond, Rebuild, Revive and Renew

Andrew Haines considers a post-Covid railway Network Rail chief executive Andrew Haines holds round-table briefings with the editors of the rail industry’s press, including Rail...

A truth half told

Channel 4’s recent documentary “Britain’s train hell” asked why trains are in such a mess and what can be done to fix them. It...

Maintaining the 385s

In December, ScotRail accepted into service the last of the 70 Class 385 EMUs that Abellio had ordered from Hitachi in a £475 million...

Editorial: Getting net zero done

The UN Climate Change Conference, to be held in Glasgow in November, will be attended by over 30,000 delegates and 200 heads of state...

Getting electrification done: the net-zero imperative

On 24 June 2019, the House of Commons unanimously passed an amendment to the Climate Change Act that committed the UK to net-zero carbon...

Robroyston: New Station, Dunbar: New Platform

The December timetable change saw Scotland getting its 358th railway station and the reinstatement of a station platform that was removed in the late...

Azuma’s HIGHEST challenge

The Highland main line (HML) between Inverness and Perth is the most severely graded line on the UK railway network. It requires southbound trains...

If it’s Tuesday it must be Olomouc

It is easy to sympathise with teachers who take groups of schoolchildren on educational visits, as they work hard to keep their charges together....