Train operator North Western Trains has recruited Neil Atkins as
director of corporate affairs.
Atkins has joined the company from the Association of Train Operating
Companies (ATOC), where he was assistant director. He will report to MD
Atkins replaces Ilona Morgan, who was corporate affairs director of
British Rail’s North West regional railways, before North Western Trains
won the franchise to operate in the area in March 1997. Morgan left the
company in December.
North Western Trains’ PR is handled in house by a three-man team
including Atkins. External agency support has not been ruled out, and
Atkins is looking to recruit more staff. He said he would considering
reviewing the company’s PR needs.
Citigate Westminster has a lobbying account with the company’s parent,
Great Western Holdings.
Atkins was commercial director of Gatwick Express before leaving in 1996
to join ATOC, following the privatisation of British Rail.
NWT has a turnover of pounds 300 million. It operates urban services in
Manchester and Liverpool and rural services in North Wales, Lancashire
The network extends from Carlisle to Holyhead, Birmingham International
The operating company will introduce new services in May this year
between Blackpool and London. In December NWT also commissioned a study
on the advantages of opening 26 new stations.