New build, CP6 and the Digital Railway

10 October 2019

Le Meridien Piccadilly, London

Accelerate: Rail Infrastructure 2019 is the UK’s leading conference that brings together senior decision-makers delivering major rail projects in the UK and beyond. 

The event offers unique access to leading figures connected to a whole host of rail infrastructure projects. From CP6 to BIM, ERTMS Signalling to large-scale construction projects, we’ve got everything covered.

New to 2019 sees the addition of asset management and the role of AI in the railways. Find out what the industry can learn by harnessing data for a predictive and preventative railway as well as the transformative power of Artificial Intelligence!

It was great to get all of the industry leaders in one room at a crucial time of change and to take time to focus on how we are, collectively, going to deliver a service passengers deserve” 

Chief Executive, Network Rail

2019 Speakers

Jon Shaw

Jon Shaw

Chief Engineer, Network Rail

Tim Shoveller Stagecoach Group

Tim Shoveller

Managing Director - UK Rail, Stagecoach Group

Tim Flower, Network Rail

Tim Flower

Professional Head of Maintenance, Network Rail

John Larkinson, Office of Rail and Road, Accelerate Rail Infrastructure

John Larkinson

Chief Executive, Office of Rail and Road

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Malcom Taylor

Head of Technical Information, Crossrail

Simon Adams, Transport for London

Simon Adams

Head of Commercial, Transport for London

Rich Fisher Great Western Railway

Rich Fisher

Head of Western Alliance, Great Western Railway

Toufic Machnouk, Accelerate Rail

Toufic Machnouk

Programme Director, Network Rail

More Speakers

2019 Agenda

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Day 1 Thursday, 10 October 2019


Welcome Address and Chair's opening remarks

Session 1

Improving the efficiency of the rail network - from CP6 to beyond | 09.10 - 10.50

Reflecting on the start of CP6 and its ultimate impact on efficiency

• The 100 day review: how will the new 13-route model bring track and train closer together?
• Route devolution: introducing competition in infrastructure and improving productivity
• How will the next control period help to improve SME engagement?
• The R&D fund: developing new technology to improve performance and efficiency

Jon Shaw
Jon Shaw

Chief Engineer , Network Rail

Ensuring Network Rail are held more accountable in CP6

• Outlining the overall strategy to regulate the operations and maintenance of the network
• Transitioning from a centrally-run company to a route-based one: ensuring accountability
• Strengthening Routes’ ability to buy goods and services locally rather than centrally
• Ensuring there is room for innovation in a regulated industry

John Larkinson, Office of Rail and Road, Accelerate Rail Infrastructure
John Larkinson

Chief Executive , Office of Rail and Road

Leaders’ forum

Revolutionising the railways: assessing the impact of CP6

• How does CP6 look to address the on-going issues of slow productivity in rail infrastructure?
• The lack of enhancements funding: what long-term impact will this have to the industry?
• What impact does the current system have on SMEs and how can this be improved?
• Evaluating the power of devolution: how can this improve infrastructure efficiency?
• How can the ORR’s assessment be improved resulting in more time for Network Rail to prepare?
• What role can technology play in delivering a more efficient rail network?

Jon Shaw
Jon Shaw

Chief Engineer , Network Rail

John Larkinson, Office of Rail and Road, Accelerate Rail Infrastructure
John Larkinson

Chief Executive , Office of Rail and Road

Darren Caplan - Rail Conference
Darren Caplan

Chief Executive , Railway Industry Association

Tim Shoveller Stagecoach Group
Tim Shoveller

Managing Director - UK Rail , Stagecoach Group

Session 2

The Digital Railway - increasing capacity by enhancing technology | 11.20-12.40

The big challenge of digital railway is the integration of the infrastructure and rolling stock, and with the need for asset renewal coming at the same time as 70% of passenger trains being fitted, Network Rail is presented with a huge opportunity to align track and train in an efficient manner. In this session, you will have the opportunity to hear from the Digital Railway as it embarks on its largest project to date, investing over £1.8bn in digital signalling, as well as a wider discussion focusing on the strategies needed to rollout ERTMS signalling in the UK.

ETCS on the East Coast Main Line: Britain’s largest digital railway project

• The first inter-city line equipped with digital signalling: deploying 160km of track to Grantham
• Why is this route a once in a life-time opportunity to implement ETCS in the UK?
• How will capacity increase due to the investment in digital signalling on this route?
• How will the Early Contract Involvement programme be integrated into the development phase?

Toufic Machnouk, Accelerate Rail
Toufic Machnouk

Programme Director , Network Rail

Panel discussion

Implementing a digital railway: assessing the challenges ahead

• Outlining a robust plan of action for the digital railway for the coming years
• What are the main challenges when implementing a digital railway and how can they be overcome?
• What disadvantages does the UK face when digitising an historical Victorian rail system?
• A view from the EU: what lessons can be learnt from abroad?
• What are the obstacles with fitting digital signalling on old fleets and how can they be rectified?
• What is the progress of ETCS level 3 and how will this improve the network?

Paul Boyle
Paul Boyle

Head of ERTMS , LNER

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Niall LeMage

ERTMS, Programme Manager - Rail Digital Services , Department for Transport

Toufic Machnouk, Accelerate Rail
Toufic Machnouk

Programme Director , Network Rail

Session 3

The use of smart asset management and AI in the railways | 13.55- 14.35

Introducing a predictive and preventative maintenance programme has long been an ambition of infrastructure managers. It promises to save time, reduce cost and ultimately increase the networks’ capacity. Network Rail have committed to investing in data aggregation and collection, which is driving this new condition-based approach of asset management. In this session, you will learn the ways in which data is processed and how it can offer actionable insights. Also, you’ll learn how AI and image-recognition technology is predicting potential faults – never seen before on the British railways!

The Intelligent Infrastructure Programme: the devil is in the data

• Transitioning to a ‘predict and prevent railway’: the progress so far
• What role has ORBIS played in enabling Network Rail to predict faults throughout the network?
• Why is the data-processing capacity falling short of the level required to predict maintenance?
• How can Network Rail better handle the large volume of data it is monitoring?

Tim Flower, Network Rail
Tim Flower

Professional Head of Maintenance , Network Rail

Case study | Great Western Alliance

Harnessing the latest technology – monitoring the OLE interface collaboratively

Network Rail, along with the University of Oxford, is utilising image-recognition technology from on-train cameras to monitor the overhead-line equipment (OLE) and pantograph by measuring stagger, variations in pantograph height and vertical contact force. The immediate aim is to improve the quality and reliability of the infrastructure, by sending an alert to Network Rail’s Control team. In this case study, Rich Fisher and Paul Barnes will discuss the ways in which the data was collected and managed as well as looking at what actionable insights came from this AI technology.

Rich Fisher Great Western Railway
Rich Fisher

Head of Western Alliance , Great Western Railway

Paul Barnes, Network Rail
Paul Barnes

Principal Engineer , Network Rail

Session 4

BIM - Digital Twins for the digital built environment | 15.05 - 15.25

From time to time, new concepts come along that the latest generation of engineers grasp with both hands but which others struggle to comprehend. Now we have Building Information Modelling, which is not only new but is now compulsory at Level 2 for all government-funded contracts. In this session, you will learn the latest developments of BIM Level 2 and what impact this will have on construction projects. Furthermore, the session also offers you a unique opportunity to witness BIM’s pivotal role in a large-scale rail construction project, Crossrail. 

BIM Level 2: encouraging deeper collaboration between stakeholders

• Recording, verifying and communicating data: what are the benefits of BIM?
• How can BIM be used as a tool for full-life asset management?
• What implications will BIM have on infrastructure projects in the future?
• ISO standards: outlining the first two international standards for BIM

Barry Gleeson, BIM, Accelerate Rail
Barry Gleeson

Chair , BIM4Rail

Case study | Crossrail

The transformative power of BIM: digitising construction projects

Building Information Modelling (BIM) is the process of generating, building and managing data through the life of a construction project by using model-based technologies linked to a database of project information. BIM incorporates data, (physical, environmental and commercial) and in this case study, Malcolm Taylor will discuss Crossrail’s commitment to develop BIM and its transformative ability to plan, build and maintain assets digitally. This case study offers a unique insight into the ways in which design models can be integrated onto one centralised database delivering detailed still and moving visualisations of specific elements of the project.

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Malcom Taylor

Head of Technical Information , Crossrail

Session 5

An update on the UK's major rail projects

The UK continues to invest heavily in its rail infrastructure. Major projects are being delivered as part of the comprehensive Railway Upgrade Plan and include national schemes of work that will allow longer, faster and more frequent trains to run, so that the increasing demand for rail services can be met. In this session, you’ll be able to keep tabs on the UK’s largest railway projects from up and down the country and learn what the future holds for the industry.

The Strategic Business Plan: investing £70bn in rail infrastructure

• Northern Powerhouse Rail: providing additional capacity to improve the rail services
• Building the Strategic Development Corridors: delivering economic growth in the North
• How can the road network be more closely integrated with rail network in the region?
• Putting the plan into action: what are the next steps?

Tim Wood, Northern Powerhouse Rail Director, Transport for the North
Tim Wood

Northern Powerhouse Rail Director , Transport for the North

Delivering the UK’s next major rail project to the South East and beyond

• What has been the impact of Crossrail’s delays to this project and how can they be overcome?
• Phasing the project: in what ways can the scheme be made more affordable?
• How can technology help deliver this project to time and to budget?
• What wider economic benefit will Crossrail 2 have to London as well as the South East?

Simon Adams, Transport for London
Simon Adams

Head of Commercial , Transport for London

Closing Keynote Address

High Speed 2: delivering the most demanding rail project in Europe

• Managing 63 live sites across the whole Phase 1 route: serving over 250 work stations
• Cutting 95% of passenger’s travel time to Birmingham by 26 minutes
• Delivering Phase 2 of the project: integrating transport to the Midlands and beyond


Chair's closing remarks followed by drinks reception

Who Attends

2018 Partners

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All tickets include:

1 day conference pass, lunch & refreshments and a drinks reception

Group Discount

15% off

When you buy 3 or more tickets


Railway Industry*


£345.00 + VAT


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£795.00 + VAT


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*These tickets are only available to direct employees of train operating companies / Network Rail / PTEs / national railway network infrastructure bodies, and will be awarded at the discretion of the conference organiser whose decision is final.

Consultancy, engineering and law firms are not eligible for this rate.

Advisory board

These are the partners who have helped us to make Accelerate: Rail Infrastructure more relevant and insightful than ever before. Our relationship with the Board helps us to keep our finger on the pulse and carefully craft the most exciting content for you.

Tim Shoveller Stagecoach Group

Tim Shoveller

Managing Director - UK Rail, Stagecoach Group

Michele Dix

Managing Director - Crossrail 2, Transport for London

Caroline Murdoch, Network Rail

Caroline Murdoch

Director of Corporate Communications, Network Rail

David Statham

David Statham

Managing Director, Southeastern

Mark Hopwood, Great Western Railway, Accelerate Rail

Mark Hopwood

Managing Director, Great Western Railway

Mary Hewitt Arriva

Mary Hewitt

Strategy & Policy Director, Arriva

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Kerri Ricketts

Head of Customer Experience, GTR

Rich Fisher Great Western Railway

Rich Fisher

Head of Western Alliance, Great Western Railway

2019 Venue Details

Le Meridien Piccadilly

Le Meridien Piccadilly

21 Piccadilly, Mayfair, London W1J 0BH

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