British Steel has given its support to the new National College for High Speed Rail (NCHSR) by donating more than 700 metres of rail to train the engineers of the future.
The college will consist of two campuses - one in Doncaster and one in Birmingham – where thousands of engineering students will eventually be trained to deliver billions of pounds worth of rail contracts, including HS2.
The futuristic campus in Doncaster is expected to be completed by September 2017, and will include a train for students to work on which will be run on the rail supplied by British Steel.
Peter Smith, British Steel’s Managing Director for Rail, said: “High speed rail is a hugely important development for this country and British Steel expects to play a leading role in HS2.
“The National College for High Speed Rail will help train the rail engineers of the future and I am delighted that British Steel is able to support them.
“We are proud of our reputation across the globe for supplying high speed rail in a series of prestigious schemes and we look forward to working with the college and HS2 management team as the project develops.”
British Steel has donated 41 lengths of 18 metre rail which will be installed inside the site before some of it is built around.
Peter said: “The rail will be used for the test track on which the train inside the college will be used, giving the students the chance to work on a real train. The rail will also allow students to be trained in railway maintenance.”
The British Steel rail for the project was manufactured at the company’s integrated steelworks in Scunthorpe.
And John Austin, British Steel’s Network Rail Account Manager, said: “The request from HS2 was for the supply chain to support the high speed college after we attended an industry day back in December.
“It was fantastic to see the rail delivered and know that it will play such a vital role in the development of high speed rail in this country.”
Beth Curtis, the college’s Head of Partnerships and Communications, said: “The National College for High Speed Rail will enable young people from Doncaster and across the Yorkshire region 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 replica stretch of track, demonstrating the commitment of employers like British Steel. It will allow us to create 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 Doncaster campus.
Rhomberg Sersa Project Manager Chris Kearns said: “We’ve been actively involved in this project both here and in Birmingham for the last few years, and we’re now at the critical stage of installation. Working with British Steel has been fantastic, everything’s gone really smoothly.”