Infrarail, the UK’s leading showcase of railway infrastructure technology and expertise, has been postponed following the escalation of COVID-19 in Europe. The exhibition will now be co-located and take place alongside Railtex 2021, the UK’s premier exhibition of railway equipment, systems and services, taking place at the NEC in Birmingham from 11 – 13 May 2021.
The 13th Infrarail exhibition had been planned to take place at London Olympia from 12 to 14 May 2020.
Speaking about the announcement, Nicola Hamann, managing director of Mack Brooks Exhibitions, said: “The health and safety of our exhibitors, visitors and staff is our number one priority. After many weeks closely monitoring the evolving situation around COVID-19 and the notices issued by the World Health Organisation as well as Public Health England, the UK Government, the local authorities in London and in close coordination with all partners involved, we have decided to postpone the exhibition.
“This is not a decision we have taken lightly; our customers, partners and the Infrarail Team worked incredibly hard on this event” she continued. “While it is disappointing to postpone, it is imperative that we prioritise the health and safety of everyone involved. Our goal remains to provide the best customer value for everyone attending Infrarail by delivering a high-quality exhibition in 2021. We believe the decision to co-locate Infrarail with next year’s Railtex exhibition with the help and support of our partners will allow us to maximize the potential of both events, uniting the whole rail industry.”
Rail Media has a long association with Infrarail. The company is a media partner for the show, its Rail Engineer magazine hosts the technical seminar programme and its leading rail-industry job board RailwayPeople.com powers the Recruitment Wall.
“Naturally, we are sorry that Infrarail has been postponed,” said Rail Media director Tom O’Connor. “A lot of people have already worked hard to make the show a success at its new home in Olympia, after having moved from London ExCeL.
“However, with the Coronavirus pandemic having caused a near-lockdown of the UK, it is the sensible thing to do. The safety of exhibitors and visitors comes first and, although I hope the worst of the epidemic will be over by May, the situation is still unclear and, even if they are back at work, people will have lots of work to catch up on.
“Mack Brooks has done the right thing in postponing the show and we shall certainly be giving them every support for the combined Railtex and Infrarail next May.”