Transdev Dublin Light Rail – operators of Luas – and Edinburgh Trams have been named joint Operators of the Year at the Global Light Rail Awards. The annual award ceremony took place in London on 3rd October and as always seems to be the case announcements of the winners has been sporadic with full details of who won each award not available. However, other known winners have been Blackpool Transport, Manchester Metrolink and Nottingham Express Transit whilst Sam Flynn from Trams for Lytham was also Highly Commended.
Starting off with what could probably be described as the main award of the night – Operator of the Year. This award looks for the operator that has demonstrated exceptional innovation, performance and customer service. Both Luas and Edinburgh Trams have announced that they have won the award which presumably means its a joint award – although neither have mentioned that! Transdev Dublin Light Rail and Edinburgh Trams beat competition from KeolisAmey Docklands (Docklands Light Railway) and Keolis Downer Gold Coast (Australia) in winning on the night.
The evening isn’t only interested in companies and systems but individuals are also honoured and four individuals were celebrating at the end of the night. In the Rising Star award, Sam Flynn from the Trams to Lytham group (campaigning for trams to run to Lancashire town) was Highly Commended whilst Nottingham Express Transit driver trainers Patrick Randle-Bass and Paul Heslop were named Employees of the Year (this was the second year in a row that someone from NET have celebrated this award).
The Judges Special Award was given to former Chairman of Transport for Greater Manchester, Andrew Fender in recognition of him being one of the main advocates and driving forces behind Manchester Metrolink. A system which has, of course, become the UK’s largest tramway over the past 26 years.
Team of the Year went to Blackpool Transport Services Limited for the work of their engineering department whilst another winner was MPact Thales (Manchester Metrolink) in the Significant Safety Initiative category for their Health and Wellbeing programme.
The night also saw a number of projects Highly Commended with TfGM and MPact Thales noted in the Best Environmental and Sustainability Initiative and Technical Innovation of the Year categories for their joint utilities and traffic management work on the Trafford Park extension. KeolisAmey Metrolink were highly commended in the Outstanding Engineering Category for its gigabit Ethernet resilience programme to improve the network’s IT resilience whilst two Highly Commended notations were given to Nottingham Express Transit in the Best Customer Initiative and Technical Innovation Categories.
Edinburgh Trams were also Highly Commended in the Environmental and Sustainability, Most Improved System and Technical Innovation infrastructure categories.
Although a full list of winners hasn’t yet been posted anywhere you can see all those nominated for awards at mainspring.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2018/09/GLRA18-Shortlist.pdf.