Headline Sponsor:


The Government have recently announced that the Great Western Rail franchise may be split up to ensure the best possible experience for passengers. The plans could include creating a new West of England rail franchise, with a public consultation due in spring 2018, with views on how the new franchise from April 2020 will run.

This networking dinner and panel debate will offer insightful discussion on the key priorities within the region. Firstly, the Western Rail Link to Heathrow (WRLtH) line, which will improve journeys to England’s busiest airport and help increase productivity in the Thames Valley. Alongside reduced rail times and improved connectivity, this proposed £500m project has the potential to create 42,000 new jobs and help reduce congestion on the surrounding M4, M25 and M3. Consultation is due again in August 2017, with the tender due to be awarded in 2018.

Secondly, the post dinner debate will focus on the wider objectives within the region, including the consultation, ensuring passengers benefit from a transformational programme of upgrades as quickly as possible.

For more information about this event, or to book your place please call Martin Taylor on 07958 548675, or email m.taylor@peloton-events.co.uk

8th November 2018
  • 6:00 PM - 7:00 PMpre-event drinks reception
  • 7:05 PM - 7:10 PMhost address Brian Meechan, BBC Transport Correspondent - confirmed
  • 7:10 PM - 7:40 PMpanel debate – The Heathrow Rail Link• Discuss the latest developments from the consultation plan and a broader outline of the wider benefits of the WRLtH route.
    • Future train service patterns.

    Francis McGarry - Western Route Business Development Director (Network Rail) confirmed
    Fraser Brown – Director, Heathrow Express - confirmed
    Chris Joyce – Head of Surface Access (Future Heathrow) - confirmed
    Ruth Bagley, Consultant - confirmed
    Mark Hopwood MD (GWR) - confirmed
  • 7:45 PM - 9:15 PMdinner served
  • 9:30 PM - 10:15 PMpanel debate – • Can the plan to drop electrification for new trains be recovered and put back in the plan?
    • Discuss the routes which have yet to see investment

    Mark Langman – Route MD (Network Rail) - confirmed
    Jonathan Willcock – Managing Director SSI (Alstom) - confirmed
    Nina Howe – Senior Stakeholder Manager (Transport Focus) - confirmed
    Mark Hopwood MD (GWR) - confirmed
    Nina Howe (Passenger Manager) Transport Focus - confirmed
  • 10:30 PM - 12:00 AMnetworking and drinks
Reading, UK
Olympia Ballroom