We have worked on projects for client Siemens since 2014.
- skilled trades, supervisors and labour
- professional and technical, bid and tender, signalling, civils, rolling stock, human factors engineering, and trackwork professionals
- and we deliver civil engineering contracts on resignalling projects.
Operations director Rick Palin said: “Siemens is a good company to work with. Their attitude to safety is exemplary, and they are always willing to listen to feedback from our teams.”
We are currently providing a large number of people to Siemens on the north-east Durham Coast rail upgrade. The works include replacing old signal boxes with new automatic barriers. VGC teams are also involved in constructing RAB and LOC bases for upgrading the signalling system.
Our teams are supported by labour manager Anthony Iley and senior recruitment consultant Anthony Fender.
Our site manager covers the Siemens sites across the project to ensure workers comply with all safety standards.
Mark Griffiths, telehandler driver, Robert Brown, yard operative and pick-up driver (both VGC), Sirilo Sautaka (MPI Limited) and Dan Maplebeck (Coyle Personnel) were thanked for swift action ensuring the integrity of the railway. They noticed a car stopped on the level crossing at Norton-on-Tees. Thinking the driver was ill, they rushed to the vehicle to assist. The car was empty but the handbrake was off. So they quickly pushed the car clear of the Network Rail open line. It turned out that the owner, who was inside the nearby pub, had mistakenly left the handbrake off, and the car had rolled onto the crossing. Their quick thinking prevented what might have been a major incident.
Network Rail resignalling
Andy Gallimore, Siemens installation supervisor, sent an email about one of our civils gangs:
“During the commissioning over Christmas here in Manchester I had the privilege of working with a civils team:
- G Walker (team leader)
- L Molyneux
- C Southam
- M Fox
- G Southam
“They were outstanding. Their attitude was excellent, never once complaining, regardless of the task. At the 11th hour they were asked to return at short notice to help complete the final works for the commissioning, and again they obliged.
“These are the people that make the team and make the work happen. Many thanks.”
The team was working on commissioning the Manchester signalling works (Package A4), mainly replacing and upgrading cables and trough routes.
Our team members have worked on resignalling projects for Siemens in Birmingham, Bolton and Oxford, and we also worked on the northern hub programme for Siemens at Crewe, Birmingham, Banbury and Manchester.
We supply technical and professional staff to the East Coast Main Line resignalling project, the Transpennine project in Manchester, and the Core Valley Lines resignalling project in Wales.
Birmingham New Street
The supervisor for client Siemens thanked the team doing civils work as part of the Birmingham New Street Phase 7 project:
“On Monday night when the vac x machine broke down half way into the shift, the team went out of their way to help me complete the job, and stayed late till it was done.
“On Wednesday I did my normal rounds, and once again I was extremely impressed with the work done. Credit to
- Andrew Burgess – COSS / SWL1 (team leader)
- Lewis Ramsay (PTS civils operative)
- Paul Turner (PTS civils operative)
- Neville Hamilton (PTS civils operative).
“Keep up the good work.”
Labour manager Mitch Turbitt also thanked PTS civils operative Sam Marshall, who is usually a member of the gang.
Chippenham head office
We provide a large number of professional people to Siemens’ head office, including bid managers, administrators, obsolescence lifecycle engineer, R&D project manager, and an ergonomist.
Obsolescence and lifecycle engineer Herbert Ssevume works on the Victoria London Underground Line project. He analyses electronic parts within rail systems and determines which parts are coming to the end of their life cycle. He then sends reports to the manufacturers to find suitable replacements or alternate options.
Our labour teams worked on HS2 enabling works at Euston for Siemens, preparing for new signalling and cabling.
North-west electrification project
Our people worked for many years for Siemens on the north-west rail electrification project. This included the north Lincolnshire and Crewe junction upgrades, as well as phase 5 Manchester Victoria to Stalybridge line of route works, including troughing and location bases.
North Lincolnshire rail upgrade
We were the main labour supplier to the North Lincolnshire rail upgrade project.
Our teams upgraded 16 old level crossings, replacing the old-style gates with new automatic barrier systems to reduce operating costs and improve safety. VGC teams also provided all the civil engineering infrastructure for the warning light and siren systems. We were involved in renewing and re-controlling approximately 60 miles of signalling between Scunthorpe and Cleethorpes, with sub-cable routes, equipment bases, walking routes and signage.
Our teams were thanked by client Siemens for their
tenacity and willingness to go the extra mile.
Over Christmas and New Year 2015-16 our teams received a large number of compliments. These include: “their enthusiasm and willingness to work is a breath of fresh air” and “Please pass on my personal gratitude…. The hard work and dedication from the teams ensured we were successful [in the Christmas commissioning]”.
Crewe signalling project
We also supplied professional staff and skilled trades to Siemens on a similar signalling project in Crewe. Our package manager has supported Siemens on various projects since 2016. They oversee project planning, construction, purchasing of materials, plant and labour. Our SSOW (safe systems of works) planner ensures that possession works are carried out safely.
Following a health awareness day run on the Siemens Rail site in north Lincolnshire, Siemens Regional EHS&S Manager Paul Barker said: “The teams gave very positive feedback regarding the supply of occupational health specialists. It was something they really did seem to appreciate, because many of them find their working hours and location make it quite difficult to see their GP for routine checks.”
Core Valley lines resignalling
One of our people, who joined Siemens as a section engineer, has worked for VGC for over 10 years. He worked across multiple Siemens projects, and is now the civils package manager. The project is to renew and replace lineside signalling equipment, and create an integrated control centre as part of the Core Valley lines transformation programme on behalf of Transport for Wales.
We supplied a large number of trades and labour to Thameslink, supported by labour manager Mark Beer, as well as professional staff. Our document controller has been on the project since June 2014.
Civil engineering projects
VGC Project teams provided civil engineering infrastructure signalling to client Siemens on part of the Volker Rail project. This included cable routes, hard standings, signal bases, signalling station bases and FLI piling.
The Siemens construction manager emailed to compliment Rob Brown, working on Durham Coast. “The feedback for him from site has been particularly impressive. He has taken the action to do works above and beyond what is required on his own initiative. The site he is working at is now fantastic.” Rob, who is working as yard operative and pick-up driver, took it upon himself to clear up the site and ensure it was neat and tidy. He has also been supporting colleagues to keep social distance.
This followed a comment by Siemens senior management on how organised, clean and presentable the site was.
Key influencer Joe Atherton was commended by Siemens in April 2017 for his performance on the Manchester-Blackpool rail upgrade project.
Andrew Donnelly and Sean Burdette, Alan Taylor, Ian Hendry, Mark O’Leary, Lee Cavill and Jamie Burdette were commended by Siemens for supporting a distressed member of the public and maintaining the safety of the railway in April 2017.