Phil Verster is to be the managing director of the East West rail project, between Oxford, Cambridge and East Anglia.
East West Rail will be a new integrated rail operation that is separate to Network Rail, the set-up being comparable to Crossrail. It aims to improve the east-west connectivity between Oxford, Cambridge and East Anglia. A corridor running between Bedford, Sandy and Cambridge has been selected as the preferred option for the central section of East West Rail.
Verster joins from Scotrail where he was managing director. He will be replaced by Alex Hynes, who joins from Arriva Rail North.
“Over the last two years I have worked with my team to launch the ScotRail Alliance, delivering hundreds of commitments and laying the ground for the exciting new train fleets that will start to arrive later this year,” said Vester. The opportunity to build on these same principles with the creation of a new business such as East West Rail is great for me and my family, and I wish the ScotRail Alliance team all the best for the future.”
Network Rail chief executive Mark Carne added: “Phil has done a great job setting up the ScotRail Alliance and overseeing the delivery of one of the largest programmes of rail modernisation in Scotland since Victorian times. I am delighted that a leader of Phil’s calibre will be heading up the new East West rail project, recently announced by the secretary of state. We have agreed a replacement to succeed Phil and will be making an announcement shortly.”
Verster will take up his new post in the spring.