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Back on track: Railtex & Infrarail 2021 confirmed to go ahead in September

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As the country nears stage 4 of the roadmap established by the Government, the entire railway industry expresses its support and commitment

Following the successful show launch of the innovative meeting platform EuroRail Hub, which brought the whole European railway industry together in March, Mack-Brooks Exhibitions are now looking ahead with a mind to continue to bring added value to the market at Railtex/Infrarail to support the recovery of the UK rail industry, all the while delivering a secure environment at the event for all participants.

To do so, the Organisers are keeping up to date with the latest government guidelines and closely working with the venue to ensure a safe return to events. “We’re looking forward to hosting Railtex/Infrarail at the NEC on 7-9 September. This promises to be a fantastic exhibition and a great opportunity for the rail industry to reconnect. In the meantime, we continue to work hard behind the scenes, preparing to resume full operations and ensuring visitors can return safely to the venue under our NEC Venue Protect measures,” expresses Ian Taylor, Managing Director of NEC Group Conventions & Exhibitions.  

Whilst the impact of COVID-19 has been strongly felt across the entire railway supply chain, with a loss of revenue and decrease of productivity, the rail sector is still thriving. Significant improvements to the network are still being made and more than £48 billion will be spent over the next five years. Many major new rail projects such as HS2, The Great North Rail Project, the East-West Rail, Crossrail 2, and the TFL Four Lines Modernisation amounting to billions of pounds are underway or planned. The Williams-Shapps Plan for Rail, which was drafted by Transport Secretary Grant Shapps and chair of the review Keith Williams, will be implemented in 2023 and includes the creation of Great British Railways (GBR), a new public body that will oversee the entire infrastructure and manage fare collections.

These substantial changes, along with ongoing projects at the heart of the rail industry, highlight the growing need for a rail marketplace as short and long-term plans are now being made across the whole country. “As we emerge from the Coronavirus pandemic, rail will play an essential role in rebooting the economy. The rail industry is crucial, not only for keeping our railways running successfully, but also for supporting hundreds of thousands of jobs and billions of pounds of investment – all around the country. Railtex/Infrarail comes at a vital time for the sector and will provide a fantastic opportunity for professionals to meet, network and engage, after so long apart. The Railway Industry Association is really pleased to be Show Partner of the event and support a trade show that provides so many opportunities for the rail supply sector. By meeting, sharing ideas and finding new business opportunities, suppliers will be better placed both to win more work and also to help leads the UK’s economic revival,” says Darren Caplan, Chief Executive of Railway Industry Association (RIA).

With planning security and clear guidelines in place, a need for face-to-face encounters and genuine networking opportunities is emerging, a fact borne out by the number of exhibitors signing up every week to express their desire to reconnect, get together and get back on track: “Alstom is looking forward to exhibiting at the UK’s premier rail event and exhibition – and in the flesh too.  As the UK’s leading private sector rail organisation, we are excited about engaging with customers, stakeholders and suppliers on sustainable and smart mobility and the future of rail,” declares Kathryn Lancaster, Communications Manager, UK & Ireland, Alstom.

Other exhibitors have also highlighted the urgent need for a platform to showcase new technologies and latest innovations to an international pool of prospective customers in order to facilitate the establishment of new strategic commercial partnerships: “Hilti will be once again exhibiting at Railtex/Infrarail & will be using this to promote our innovative product & system solutions. It will also be an opportunity to introduce our newer items to a wider audience especially with some exciting kit that has recently been launched. But most of all, it is an opportunity to meet in person fellow railway professionals to discuss various topics, which is something we haven’t been able to do for some time,” stated Colin Burnikell (MPWI), Strategic Key A/c Manager at Rail, Hilti (Gt. Britain) Ltd.

The UK’s No1 event for Railway Technology, Products and Systems

Among the ranks of confirmed exhibitors at Railtex/Infrarail are small and medium-sized companies as well as large enterprises serving all aspects of the infrastructure and rolling stock technologies, including Deutzer Technische Kohle GmbH, Hitachi Information Control Systems Europe Ltd, Schweizer Electronic Ltd, Stadler Rail Management AG, Pandrol – Vortok, Lucchini Unipart Rail (LUR Ltd) and many more.

Railtex and Infrarail have successfully served the rail market and received the support of prominent associations and trade publications for over 25 years, including The Railway Industry Association (RIA), Railway Gazette International, Rail Media and Rail Business Daily. In 2021, it will be the first time the two exhibitions have come together, forming the ultimate show for railway specialists at all management levels, from key industry contractors, suppliers and sub-contractors, equipment manufacturers, to public transport operators and management authorities.

Seminars & conferences hosted by high-level industry experts and speakers are in the programme. Railtex/Infrarail’s recurring features also include an On-Track Display and Plant & Machinery Exhibits for live machinery demonstrations, allowing companies to find smart solutions to meet their needs.

Organised by Mack-Brooks Exhibitions, Railtex and Infrarail are part of a series of targeted trade events for the railway industry, including SIFER in France and EXPO Ferroviaria in Italy, all taking place in the second half of 2021 to support the recovery of the European rail market. Altogether, the exhibitions form a network of 25,000 visitors, 40 industry partners and 1,300 exhibiting companies looking to grow their business.

For more information on Railtex/Infrarail, visit the official show website: www.uk-railhub.com