Railfuture Conferences and Webinars

This page is showing details for a single Railfuture past event. To see details of many of our past events and future events please click HERE.

Selected past event


  • Thu 30/03/2023 Turning Point for the Railway
  • The railway needs to understand and influence what politicians want from it, including how to structure it to make it much more effective. Where should the focus of campaigners for a bigger, better, railway be? The railway can be a highly effective contributor to decarbonisation, to levelling up and as part of many wider initiatives — but only if it is successful in attracting passengers and freight to use the railway. The post-Covid railway can no longer rely on commuters who 'have' to travel to work each day — who can replace them? Our conference provided an opportunity to pause and reflect on this.
  • This conference was dedicated to the memory of William Whiting, who helped to organise this event and was a widely respected rail campaigner

  • 'What do we want the railways to look like in the future?'

  • It was held at St George's Centre

  • Read an [Article] about the conference — Railfuture's Annual National Conference still coming to Leeds despite strikes (Rail Business Daily on 17/03/2023)

  • About the speakers: [Read Speaker Biographies]
  • speakers
  • Nick Flynn Twitter Image and Abby Taylor Twitter Image, Family Friendly Trains Twitter Image (talked about: Campaign to make trains more family friendly)
  • Stewart Palmer, Vice President and Director, Railfuture Twitter Image Facebook Image (talked about: Railfuture's view on whether the railway is working for passengers)
    • Stewart was previously Managing Director of South West Trains
  • Karen Bennett Twitter Image, Education and Youth Engagement Advisor, Community Rail Lancashire Twitter Image Facebook Image (talked about: How young people can be engaged in the railways)
  • Phil Smart, Assistant Policy Manager, Rail Freight Group Twitter Image (talked about: Rail's role in the future movement of freight)
    • Phil is also Councillor at Ipswich Borough Council with a strong knowledge of transport matters
  • Dr Manuel Ojeda Cabral, Senior Research Fellow in Transport Economics and Appraisal, University of Leeds (talked about: The value of new railway lines and stations)
  • Craig Alexander, replaced Alison Smith, Head of Accessibility and Inclusion, Great British Railways Transition Team (GBRTT) LinkedInImage (talked about: where GBRTT is currently)
  • Conference Chair: Brian Barnsley Twitter Image, Deputy Chief Executive of Community Rail Network and Head of Support and Development, Community Rail Network Twitter Image
  • The above speakers have confirmed their availability for the new conference date, although they may provide a substitute in their place