Ray Churchill first again

THE first Vintage Trains Limited driver to qualify under the new Train Operating Company status, Ray Churchill, has been presented with his European Train Driving Licence.

This new requirement came into force on October 31 and prescribes that all drivers must hold this licence to drive on the national network.

VTL operations systems manager Phil Allison presents Ray Churchill (left) with his European Train Driving Licence. VTL

It is designed to enable sharing of information and skills between companies regardless of how long an individual has been driving trains. VTL is an accredited examination centre for driver licensing, with former West Coast Railways driver Ray Churchill’s licence being its first issue.

On November 16, Class 50 No. 50007 Hercules ran from its base at Kidderminster on the Severn Valley Railway to Tyseley on an out-and-back trip to Stratford-upon-Avon using the North Warwickshire line, manned by VTL staff.

It enabled its drivers to qualify on Class 50s and gain further competence and experience of the class. The ‘Hoover’ will be based at Tyseley to provide backup diesel power for ‘The Polar Express’ before Christmas.

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