One of the most prominent figures in the UK rail industry, Adrian Shooter CBE, has become Chairman of Moorland & City Railways, the company planning to re-open the 30-mile line between Stoke on Trent and Cauldon Lowe.
Mr Shooter, 63, has spent four decades in a range of senior roles in the industry. During his 18 years as Chairman of Chiltern Railways, he led the company through management buy-out in 1996 to become the country’s fastest growing train operator.
Awarded the CBE in 2010 for services to the rail industry, his other roles include chairman of the West Midlands Region of the Confederation of British Industry and former director of the railways safety organisation, RSSB.
The high profile appointment is a significant move for MCR as it moves forward with ambitious plans to restore freight and passenger services to the line between the Staffordshire Moorlands and the West Coast main line at Stoke.
“We are delighted that Adrian has agreed to become our chairman,” said MCR Director David Kemp.
“Adrian has vast experience of railways not only in the UK, but around the world and we are pleased that he recognises both the potential of the line and of our business model to own the line and operate services using our own rolling stock.”
The involvement of such a key industry figure was a further sign of the project’s growing stature, Mr Kemp added.
Last October, Moorland & City Railways’ plan for a sustainable rail network was awarded a £1.65 million grant through the Government’s Regional Growth Fund initiative, recognising its role in helping to create 1,000 new jobs in the area.
With the eight-mile stretch between Leekbrook and Cauldon Lowe already restored and in use for heritage passenger services, the next milestone will be reopening of the line towards Stoke-on-Trent as far as Endon. It is planned that heritage trains will run to Endon by the summer.
Ultimately MCR plan to operate regular freight and passenger services on the track, connecting to the main line near Stoke Station.
© 2013 Moorland & City Railways
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