Tuesday, 4 October 2011

Stand by your beds! NR appoints CO to CR

The new improved Network Rail appears to be enthusiastically embracing the railway traditions of the past!

A past that stretches back to the earliest days of the railway when military men, used to commanding complex real-time organisations, were considered perfect for senior posts on an equally complex railway.

Within living memory Bill Slim, fresh from his triumphs in Burma was a founder member of the Railway Executive in 1948 and General Sir Brian Roberston GBE, KCMG, KCVO, DSO, MC was appointed Chairman of the British Transport commission in 1953.

More recently of course the Railway Forum, which represented the then newly privatised industry, was led from the front by Major General Adrian Lyons CBE during the challenges of Great Heck and Hatfield.

Therefore, Eye notes with approval that NR's newly appointed Programme Director for Crossrail is one Jorge Mendonca, late Commanding Officer of The Queen's Lancashire Regiment, who was awarded both the Distinguished Service Order (DSO) and is a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE).

With Crossrail being overseen by the excitable Mayor of London it is good to see that Network Rail will treat the project with a firm military hand.

Meanwhile Eye respectfully suggests that the correct mindset for the new task could be the unofficial motto of the Royal Tank Regiment, in which that greatest of all BR Chairman Sir Robert Reid served:

'From mud, through blood to the green fields beyond!'

UPDATE: This from Ivor the Engine, Banker76 and others...

Might we remind Eye...

UPDATE: This from The Major, in curmudgeonly mode...

At risk of sounding pedantic Col Jorge commanded the 1st Battalion of the QLR rather than the whole regiment.

And when it comes to mottoes, I respectively suggest that a better one for NR is:

'Per Ardua Ad £sd'...