12 Apr 2017

British Steel puts National College on track to train high speed rail engineers of the future

British Steel has donated and delivered 200 metres of rail track to The National College for High Speed Rail in Birmingham, in preparation for its launch this September. 

The college will consist of two campuses which are currently under construction - one in Birmingham and one in Doncaster – where thousands of students will be trained to deliver billions of pounds worth of future high speed rail contracts.  

Birmingham’s campus is being developed on the bank of the Grand Union Canal at Venture Way.  Together with the Doncaster campus, The National College for High Speed Rail will train more than 1,300 students per year once it reaches full capacity.

Both developments are scheduled to be completed this summer and will open their doors to students in September.

Peter Smith, British Steel’s Managing Director Rail, said: “The National College for High Speed Rail will be a hugely valuable asset to this country as it trains a new generation of world class rail engineers.

“Once trained, the students will become highly-skilled engineers and leaders, playing a vital part in not only bringing high speed rail to this country but ensuring it is well-maintained.

“We have developed an excellent relationship with the college, having already delivered rail track to the Doncaster campus earlier in the year.

“We’re proud of our reputation around the world for supplying high speed rail to a series of prestigious schemes and British Steel expects to play a significant role in HS2.

 “As building work nears completion in Birmingham and Doncaster, British Steel is looking forward to further developing our relationship with the college and supporting the students as they prepare to embark on their exciting new careers.”

British Steel has donated 10 lengths of 18 metre rail to the Birmingham campus which will be installed inside the site.

Peter said: “The rail track will be an important part of the learning facilities at the college, ensuring the students have the chance to be trained in railway maintenance.”

The rail for the project was manufactured at British Steel’s integrated steelworks in Scunthorpe and John Austin, the company’s Network Rail Account Manager, helped oversee the delivery.

It came after HS2 asked the supply chain to provide rail for the college and John said: “We have now delivered 50 tonnes worth of rail to the National College for High Speed Rail and it is great to know that in a few months’ time the students will be starting their training on British Steel rail.”

Beth Curtis, the college’s Head of Partnerships and Communications, said: “The National College for High Speed Rail will enable people from across the country to seize a once-in-a-generation opportunity to work in an exciting new industry using the latest technology.

“We’re delighted to have received a stretch of track for our Birmingham campus, demonstrating the commitment of employers like British Steel. It will allow us to prepare a genuine working environment and teach our students on the best equipment available.

“By creating a world-class, employer-led college, we will provide students with all the skills they need to enjoy an exciting and well-paid career and provide employers with the highly-skilled workforce they need to deliver high speed rail.”

The rails are being fitted at the college by Rhomberg Sersa, which was present when British Steel delivered the rail to the Birmingham campus.

Rhomberg Sersa Project Manager Chris Kearns said: “We’ve been actively involved with this project for the last few years and are now at the critical stage of installation.

“We’re very proud to be involved with such a high-profile project and were very pleased to work with British Steel on the installation of their rail, which has again gone smoothly.”

For more details on joining the college, visit www.nchsr.ac.uk/learners/admissions-and-applications/