Network Rail has announced the secondment of Virgin’s chief operating officer, Chris Gibb, to the company.
Working collaboratively with Network Rail, Virgin Trains has agreed to this secondment for the remainder of this year to work with the Network Rail team on improving the performance of the infrastructure on the southern end of the West Coast Main Line.
Mr Gibb will retain a number of his current duties and responsibilities for Virgin Trains and will continue to undertake these alongside the role in Network Rail and will report to Robin Gisby, Network Rail’s managing director of network operations for the duration of his secondment. He will work very closely with Jo Kaye (the route managing director of the London North Western Route, which encapsulates the West Coast Main Line) and her team, using his 31 years of railway experience to bring unique insight to the task ahead.
The West Coast Main Line has seen a dramatic increase in traffic over the last five years and the infrastructure is now delivering an unacceptable level of reliability that Network Rail and Virgin Trains are determined to tackle.
David Higgins, chief executive, Network Rail, said: “We warmly welcome this collaborative approach by Virgin to work with us and the other train operators to drive up performance on this key part of our network”
Chief executive officer Tony Collins said “Chris is one of the best operators in the industry and his experience will prove invaluable to Network Rail in delivering the improvements to performance our customers rightly demand. We have a strong working relationship with the team at Network Rail and this short term secondment seemed the natural thing to do.“