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Young Rail Professionals – Young Rail Tours – Inspiration through travel

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After two and a half years, Young Rail Tours (YRT) delivered its first international tour in style this September by taking a group of 32 eager young professionals on a railway study tour of Milan.

Established in 2019, YRT is one of a number of YRP’s initiatives aimed at inspiring and developing the next generation of railway talent. YRT’s mission is simple; to deliver affordable, accessible, and inspirational study tours for colleagues working within the UK Rail Industry.

Milan 2022

The tour included a visit to the Alstom Savigliano Centre of Railway Excellence where Davide Viale, Alstom’s site managing director, gave the group a presentation and tour of this impressive rolling stock manufacturing facility. Initially founded in 1853, the site manufactures High Speed and Regional rail vehicles for railways around the globe. One of the features that most impressed the group was the facility’s custom-built Virtual Reality suite, in which individuals and groups could inspect and manipulate 3D CAD designs in a virtual space.

The trip also included a half day tour of the Azienda Transport Milanesi (ATM) Metro System. Delegates visited the San Siro Metro Stop which services the famous San Siro football stadium, which featured an innovative crowd control system to maintain safe passenger numbers on the automated metro line. A full-height turnstile gate with automated passenger counters ensures that once capacity is reached for the next train the barriers automatically stop admission until a new train has entered the station, removing dangerous overcrowding within the station or at platform level. Delegates also received a presentation on the full ATM metro system and it’s signalling systems, alongside a tour of the Milan control centre.

A YRT trip wouldn’t have been complete without a networking and cultural event. Delegates spent an evening wining, dining, and enjoying traditional Milanese music at the ‘Spirit de Milan,’ giving delegates the opportunity to get to know each other and create new personal and professional relationships to help carry them forward in their Railway Careers.

Delegates were also given the opportunity to extend their stay in Milan to include the weekend, which many did. Groups took chance to visit a number of tourist and cultural sites including Lake Como, the Milan Doumo Cathedral and, for the die-hard engineers, the Leonardo Da Vinci Museum of Technology.

Travel plans

The YRT committee is busy planning its next international and domestic study tours, considering locations such as Budapest and Wales. A new initiative also being developed to launch in 2023 is ‘The Cities’, which will be a series of full one day tours centred around rail and transport networks servicing key cities or regions across the UK.

YRP would like to thank all YRT organisers for their outstanding effort and time volunteered to organise the tour. In particular, Blair Hutchison, safety & standards engineer for Scotrail, who led the delivery of the tour.

We would also like to thank the organisations that sponsored and supported YRT in making this tour possible including: Eversholt, Alstom, Azienda Transport Milanesi, The Institution of Mechanical Engineering (IMechE) – Railway Division Young Members (RDYM), The Institution of Railway Signal Engineers (IRSE) – Young Member Division, and The Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) – Railway Technical Network Young Members.

YRT is a not-for-profit organisation and relies on the generosity of industry partners and sponsors to keep its activities affordable and accessible for professionals in the early stage of their careers. The team is looking for new partners and sponsors to work with them next year to continue to grow and deliver an Inspirational programme of events for young rail professionals across the UK.

To find out about these opportunities, or if you have any questions regarding YRT or its future tours, please get in touch with the YRT team on [email protected].


As a voluntary organisation, YRP relies on the time of committed young professionals to deliver its activities. Without these people, fantastic opportunities such as this trip to Milan, simply would not be able to happen.

We are currently looking for new volunteers to join our various committees and help with a range of functions from tour planning, finance, and marketing. If you’d like to be part of this exciting initiative, please get in touch!