Our awards

We’re proud to be at the forefront of innovation and progress in the rail industry. This commitment, along with our 'better every day' culture, is how we're delivering a better railway for all our customers.

This is further demonstrated by the awards and recognition received by our people and initiatives. You can read about some of our most recent awards below.

2017

Apprenticeship Champion of the Year

Our apprenticeship programme has won the National Transport Awards’ Apprenticeship Champion of the Year Award, recognising our commitment to investing in the future talent that we need to build and maintain a bigger, better railway for Britain. Judges considered the number of apprentice places offered, evidence of progression of individual apprentices, retention rates, and future plans.

We are proud of our successful apprenticeship scheme that recruits around 300 apprentices every year and has a retention rate of 75 per cent, well above the national engineering average. We are leading the industry in developing new high-quality standards for apprenticeships and are working closely with our supply chain to maximise the number of quality apprenticeship opportunities across the sector.

Find out more about our Advanced Apprenticeship Scheme

Apply here – and join us for three fascinating, surprising and career-advancing years as an apprentice

Armed Forces Covenant Gold Employer Recognition Scheme award

The Gold ERS award is the Ministry of Defence’s prestigious badge of honour for organisations who have demonstrated outstanding support for the Armed Forces community

Network Rail, alongside 32 other organisations, was presented with the award by HRH Prince Henry of Wales (pictured, left) on Monday 9 October, at a presentation hosted by the Secretary of State for Defence, Sir Michael Fallon (pictured, right).

Network Rail has a host of company initiatives and policies in place to encourage and support Service personnel in the workforce, including a dedicated defence engagement manager and granting additional leave to Reservists so that they can fulfil their training requirements. Network Rail signed the Armed Forces Covenant in 2015, and since then has worked closely with the Ministry of Defence to transition skills into the rail industry and develop a forces-friendly environment with its workplace.

Network Rail has a long tradition of supporting our armed forces and in employing ex-service personnel and reserve staff. There are plenty of similarities between Network Rail and the Armed forces – the challenges and pressures, where every day is different, requiring a professional can-do attitude and strong teamwork ethos.

 

A large number of our workforce come from an Armed Forces background and have thrived in our organisation providing the skills that are critical to our Railway Upgrade Plan and helping us to build a bigger, better railway for Britain.

Mark Carne, chief executive of Network Rail

Notable mention at 2017 CIPD People Management Awards

The human resources (HR) team within our infrastructure projects (track) division were recognised at the 2017 CIPD People Management Awards for their work in health and wellbeing. During a ceremony at the Grosvenor House hotel, London, on Tuesday 26 September, it was noted the HR team recognised the close correlation between a fit, healthy and engaged workforce, and a safe and successful business. At the ceremony, it was mentioned the HR team has worked tirelessly over the last two years to raise awareness of both good physical and mental health and wellbeing amongst our workforce.

Three wins at National Rail Awards

Network Rail was presented with three prizes at this year’s National Rail Awards, during a ceremony held at Grosvenor House Hotel, Park Lane, London.

Additionally, the following teams were highly commended:

  • Infrastructure Achievement of the Year: Christmas work for the Crossrail programme
  • Major Station of the Year: Glasgow Central and Manchester Piccadilly
  • Major Project of the Year: Cardiff area resignalling renewal project and Stafford area improvement programme

(Pictures courtesy of Richard Clinnick at RAIL magazine, and freelance photographer/writer, Paul Bigland)

Find out more about the ceremony and the winning projects

Rail Freight Group (RFG) Customer Care award

The leading representative body for rail freight in the UK, the Rail Freight Group (RFG), presented Network Rail with their prestigious Customer Care award.

The Customer Care award recognised the collaborative work between Network Rail, Drax Power and DB Cargo to improve the train plan between the Port of Immingham and Drax Power Station – a vital economic link providing about seven per cent of the UK’s electricity supply. Working collaboratively, the team was able to speed up the train services, get more out of the network and increase efficiency, representing an excellent example of the success of the system operator.

Find out more about the award ceremony

Visit our freight pages to read why it's so important for the economy

 

British LGBT Awards

At this year's British LGBT Awards, our lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) employee network Archway was named the top LGBT+ employee network in Britain for improving the lives of LGBT people.

In this video (below) from the British LGBT Awards, Archway chair Babak Erfani discusses winning the award.

 

Diversity and inclusion at Network Rail

Our employee networks

Pride in our people: How we support LGBT events

CEEQUAL sustainability award: Excellent 96.6 per cent

The construction of the Bermondsey dive under, a new railway junction to the east of London Bridge station, has increased biodiversity in the urban area of Bermondsey by 113 per cent, winning the team a coveted CEEQUAL Excellent award of 96.6 per cent.

The Bermondsey dive under, part of the Thameslink Programme, is a joint project by Network Rail and partners Skanska and Ramboll to untangle the tracks approaching London Bridge station.

Before construction began in 2012, the site had limited botanical diversity and low conservation value; it was scattered with the previous tenant’s debris and the soil was heavily contaminated with asbestos, Japanese Knotweed and hydrocarbons.

Read about how the team transformed the local environment

Railway Industry Innovation Awards: Major Project

On Friday 23 June, the team behind the Ordsall Chord were named winner of the prestigious Major Project award at this year's Railway Industry Innovation Awards, which celebrate the achievements of companies and individuals who are pushing the industry forward by developing innovative ideas.

The Ordsall Chord is the flagship scheme in the Great North Rail Project, linking Manchester’s three main railway stations, Piccadilly, Oxford Road and Victoria, bringing transformative benefits to train customers across the North of England. It is the first arch bridge of its kind in the UK, with inclined hangers that cross each other at least twice instead of vertical hangers, for a more elegant design that's thinner and uses less material.

By reducing railway congestion by 25 per cent in the hub of Manchester, the chord will reduce journey times and enable faster, more frequent services to run through the city to and from other major economic centres in the north. It is being built as part of an alliance between Network Rail, Skanska BAM, Amey Sersa and Siemens as well as involving sub-contractors BDP, Severfield, AECOM Mott MacDonald and Parsons Brinckerhoff.

ICE London Civil Engineering Awards

The Thameslink Programme took two coveted prizes at this year’s Institution of Civil Engineering (ICE) London Awards, held Thursday 25 May. The Awards showcase the hidden benefits of civil engineering to society and celebrate the most innovative, creative and sustainable contributions to the physical and social environment in London, with entries judged by a panel of senior engineers and experts.

Bermondsey dive under won the Infrastructure Award, which recognises civil engineering excellence in the design and construction of projects. The £77m project involved redeveloping 180-year-old brick arch viaducts to create new infrastructure that will allow south east London services to 'dive under' the Thameslink lines unimpeded. The work was completed on a constrained site within a 15-month railway blockade, remaining on time and on budget. The project reused 37,000 square metres of demolition waste on site and achieved 99.5 per cent diversion from landfill. 

More about our sustainable approach

Network Rail and partner Costain received the Greatest Contribution to London award for the London Bridge station redevelopment project, which was deemed to have had the most beneficial impact on Londonders, delivering 15 new long platforms and 65 per cent capacity increase while improving access for a great diversity of people. 

This transformation [of London Bridge station] included building a new concourse the size of Wembley Stadium: a truly remarkable feat and something which will help ensure our transport network can cope with London’s rising population.

Sadiq Khan, Mayor of London

UK Rail Industry Awards

At this year's UK Rail Industry Awards, Network Rail's High Output team (left, pictured with comedian Stephen Mangan) won the Environmental and Sustainability award for its ballast work, while Network Rail teams also took the Infrastructure Planning and Workforce Safety accolades for the ORBIS (Offering Rail Better Information Services) transformation programme to create a detailed digital model of the UK’s rail network. Sir Peter Hendy, Network Rail chairman, gave the keynote speech at this year's awards.

The Staffordshire Alliance, which comprises VolkerRail, Atkins, Laing O’Rourke and Network Rail, won the Outstanding Projects – large (over £20m) award.

ISO44001 collaborative business relationship management standard

In March 2017 our Infrastructure Projects (IP) business area (which develops and delivers railway assets, from new stations to signalling upgrades, electrification, track renewals and bridges) was one of the first six companies globally to achieve certification to ISO44001: Collaborative business relationship management following an independent assessment.

ISO44001 is the new international standard that provides guidance for identifying, developing and managing collaborative business relationships within or between organisations, and helps to provide increased effectiveness, competitiveness and performance.

It was awarded on the strength of IP’s corporate collaborative systems as well as delivering through alliances and other forms of collaborative contracts and delivery models. The S&C (switches and crossings) Alliances, Southern region frameworks, North Staffordshire Alliance, Reading Track and the London Bridge Area Partnering Programme are a few examples of the programmes to have contributed to this achievement.

The picture shows Kevin Tozer, Network Rail IP head of collaborative working, receiving the certificate from the British Standards Institute.

2016

Four Swords of Honour

Four Network Rail Infrastructure Projects delivery teams have won the Sword of Honour award from the British Safety Council.

A Sword of Honour is awarded to companies that have demonstrated excellence in the management of health and safety risks at work.

The S&C (Switches and Crossings) North Alliance, S&C South Alliance, Plain line track renewals and High Output track renewals teams were each awarded five stars in the British Safety Council's health and safety management audit scheme in the period August 2015 to July 2016, which enabled them to compete for the Sword of Honour. 

Bronze Green Apple Award

Network Rail's Queen Mary Viaduct project in East London has won a Bronze Green Apple award in the Building and Construction category for Regeneration for Environmental Best Practice.

The accolade recognised the project's “good environmental practice and social achievements on site, in particular the approach used in the demolition of a disused railway viaduct with 25 masonry arches to provide additional land for the university and the local community."

Employer of the Year

Network Rail was named Employer of the Year in the 2016 Mayor's Fund for London awards

APM Project Management Awards 2016

The APM Project Management Awards recognise what people can achieve through project management and have been celebrating excellence in the profession for over 20 years.

Spencer Hobbs, project manager, Infrastructure Projects, took the Project Professional of the Year 2016 award for his role as the project manager on the Swindon Area Signalling Renewal (SASR) project.

Read more here.

Annual Risk Management Awards 2016

Helen Hunter-Jones, Head of Group Risk, Finance, won the award for Risk Manager of the Year, while Richard Bendall-Jones, Risk & Value Manager, Infrastructure Projects, was named Newcomer of the Year at this year's Annual Risk Management Awards.

The awards celebrate success within the practice of risk management – organised by CIR Magazine (Continuity, Insurance and Risk).

Read more here

IP Track at the Construction Excellence National Awards 2016

IP Track received the BIM project of the year award for their use of state-of-the-art 4D planning environment that allows planners to visually see the construction activities happening on a 3D virtual site as they plan.

The Constructing Excellence Awards focus attention on some of the most important issues for the sector. They recognise the very best companies, collaborations and projects – sharing best practice and inspiring others to adopt new and better ways of working that deliver outstanding results.

More information here.

Borders Railway wins national tourism awards

The Borders Railway – which re-established services from Edinburgh through Midlothian to Tweedbank for the first time in over four decades – has won two top tourism awards. The British Guild of Travel Writers named Borders Railway the UK and Ireland’s best tourism project, while Visit Scotland recognised our collaborative efforts to bring domestic, leisure and tourism customers to the Borders by rail.

Information and videos here.

Building Public Trust in Corporate Reporting Award

Network Rail won the Building Public Trust in Corporate Reporting Award for 'excellence in reporting' in the Public Sector (in association with the National Audit Office) 2016.

The company was praised for marking "its return to the public sector with a well-balanced, readable and attractively designed annual report that makes strong use of graphics. As well as reporting openly and transparently on instances where it has failed to meet KPI targets, Network Rail provides detailed yet accessible information on its risks, linking these to its strategic objectives and identifying related actions. It also goes further than many other public bodies by including a specific statement on its risk appetite.”

Read more about this accolade here.

RailStaff Awards 2016

Craig Young, project and resource planning manager, was named project manager of the year and Lucy Hoyle, who has joined the newly-formed Transformation team, was named graduate of the year.

Other nominations went to Dan O'Brien for Rail Plant and Equipment Person and Team of the year, Tom Scaramuzza for engineer of the year and Steve Cowser for lifetime achievement.

See all the winners here.

Borders Railway wins Most Innovative Project at 2016 Scottish Transport Awards in Glasgow

Transport Minister Humza Yousaf joined more than 400 industry representatives at the event on Thursday 16th June 2016 to recognise excellence, innovation and progress across all areas of transport in Scotland.

Judges remarked on Borders Railway's 'phenomenal demand' since opening in September last year and its influence in 'growing the economy'. It was built to not just to carry passengers but to help stimulate the regeneration of Midlothian and the Scottish Borders.

Now some traders in Gala are reporting a doubling of trade and tourist attractions are reporting record visitor numbers.

Work in Winchburgh Tunnel was also highly commended in the Most Innovative Project and Transport Team/Partnership of the Year categories while ticket examiner Colin Johnson was highly commended for the Frontline Employee of the Year award.

Susan Cooklin, Jane Simpson and Amelia Woodley named among most inspirational women

Women in Rail has announced the 20 most inspirational women in rail, including Network Rail’s Susan Cooklin, Route Services director, Jane Simpson, chief engineer, and Amelia Woodley, environment manager.

The survey is the first of its kind, celebrating women in the UK railway sector who have positively influenced others over the course of their railway career and are an inspiration to peers, colleagues and those interested in joining the rail industry.

The top 20 finalists were chosen by Women in Rail based on the number of nominations they received and their impact on colleagues, customers and the future of the rail sector.

Find out more

Best Woman Architect for Birmingham New Street station

A prominent figure in the redevelopment of Birmingham New Street station has been recognised as one of the leading women in construction and engineering in Europe.

The important role of women in the construction and engineering industry was recognised at the Europe-wide Women In Construction and Engineering (WICE) awards in London in May 2016.

Carol Stitchman, from Network Rail, led the design for the station redevelopment and won the Best Woman Architect award. She was also the outright winner of the evening taking home the Most Distinguished Winner award as well.

More than 100 finalists entered the including engineers, construction managers and lawyers.

Winning these awards has made me immensely proud to be recognised as one of the leading women in the construction and engineering industries. It is very important to me to act as a role model to other women as well as well as raising the profile of the rail industry.

 

Working on a major refurbishment project such as Birmingham New Street is a challenging and rewarding experience and I would encourage every woman working in the construction industry to be proud of their achievements – no matter how big or small – and to enter these awards. It's not just about winning but working together, sharing experiences and celebrating success.

Carol Stitchman

Supporting Carol’s achievements, comments from the judges praised her ‘exceptional ability to maintain the project concept and deliver the vision' and she 'clearly had an enormous, positive impact on an important and successful project’.

The redeveloped Birmingham New Street station opened in September 2015 after a £750m transformation. It forms part of Network Rail's Railway Upgrade Plan which is providing passengers across Britain with a better, more reliable railway.

If you'd like to know more about all the work we're doing to improve the railway in Britain, you can take a look at our Railway Upgrade Plan, or learn a little more about how we run the railway - where just some of the award winning projects and approaches that we're delivering are being put into practice every day.