Edinburgh Trams is officially the best tramway in the UK following its win at the Global Light Rail Awards this week. Edinburgh walked away with the Operator of the Year Award at the glittering ceremony which was held at London’s Honourable Artillery Company. But Edinburgh weren’t alone in celebrating on the night.
In 2016 Edinburgh Trams were named as the Most Improved System (alongside Nottingham Express Transit) with Metrolink RATP Dev being named the Operator of the Year but it was all change in 2017 with Edinburgh now walking away with the top award (and Metrolink RATP Dev no longer being involved in Manchester either). Whilst Edinburgh Trams was highly commended in the Most Improved Operator the award winner in this category for 2017 was Midland Metro.
In Edinburgh the judges were said to be impressed with the increase in services at peak times and how extra trams are run during special events in the city (including the Edinburgh Festivals).
Lea Harrison, Edinburgh Trams Managing Director, was delighted with the awards: “To be named Operator of the Year, and to do so well across a range of other categories, is a fantastic achievement and testament everyone’s hard work over the past 12 months. This latest accolade follows the naming of Edinburgh Trams as the UK’s number one transport operator for customer satisfaction by the highly respected Transport Focus organisation and reflects our efforts to wrap the business around the customer. We’re obviously delighted to receive this recognition from the wider light rail sector but we’ll never become complacent and continue to look at ways of enhancing our services for the people who matter most, our customers.”
Elsewhere Midland Metro won the Team of the Year Award in recognition for the work the Midland Metro Alliance Development Team do in navigating the legislative minefield in bringing tram extensions from the planning phases, securing funding and finally to construction. They were also highly commended in the Technical Innovation (Infrastructure) category for the Geographical Information System which is used to complex societal, environment and construction date in a 3D setting.
Alejandro Moreno, Midland Metro Alliance Director, said: “We’re delighted that the Midland Metro Alliance, which was only formed in July 2016, has been honoured at the Global Light Rail Awards. The win is aligned with our belief in the importance of collaboration and also our aim to leave a lasting legacy that the West Midlands can be truly proud of. I am especially proud of the Development and Design teams which were personally selected by our peers in the judging.”
The evening wasn’t all about the operators and projects with individuals also honoured on the night. Employee of the Year was given to Daniel Patterson, a tram driver from Nottingham Express Transit who impressed judges with his customer-focused approach and passion for trams (including his commitment to trams outside of work when he is a volunteer conductor at Crich and also his organisation of special tours on Nottingham Express Transit).
Congratulations to all the winners!