He will start this month following Kelly’s move at the end of March to HS2, where he is now communications director.
Wyld will head up Network Rail’s communications team as it continues its investment programme and seeks to step up engagement with customers, stakeholders and employees. He will report to Network Rail chief executive Mark Carne.
Wyld left Unilever at the end of 2013, where responsibilities included external and internal communications campaigns and corporate digital channels, as well as working on the company’s sustainability message.
His previous roles include senior director, strategy and communications at the Office of Fair Trading, board director at Fishburn Hedges and parliamentary speechwriter for Simon Hughes MP.