Region’s businesses back Derby’s rail HQ bid

Published: 14 April 2022

Destination Derby - #DerbyGBR - Back Derby's bid

The 'Destination Derby' campaign launched in March

Dozens of businesses across the East Midlands are backing Derby’s bid to be the home of Great British Railways. 

The Government launched a national competition to choose where the new public body responsible for running Britain’s railway will be based. As the centre of Europe’s largest rail cluster, Derby is a front runner in the competition. Now dozens of companies across the East Midlands have added their backing. 

Paul Simpson, Chief Executive, Derby City Council, said:  

It’s because of businesses like these and the highly skilled workforce behind them that makes the East Midlands and Derby ideal for Great British Railways. Along with its central location, it provides an unparalleled opportunity for closer collaboration within the sector and beyond. 

East Midlands Airport, East Midlands Railways, Sperry Europe, Costain, Deutsche Bahn ESG, Toyota, Freeths, Compendium Living, Chatsworth, Maber, Alstom, St James Securities, MacMartin and Loughborough University are just some of the organisations from across the East Midlands who have put their name to Derby’s bid. 

Justin Stroud, Managing Director, Sperry Europe, said:  

Our European Headquarters have been located in Derby since 1999 and it is where all of Sperry’s European business and operations, including Network Rail, are managed.  

Derby is also the location of Sperry’s European Headquarters because of its connectivity – geographically the city is positioned centrally in the UK and provides the fastest access to all points of the UK, as well as easy access to suppliers and clients in mainland Europe (through rail and air links).  

Heidi Lee, Marketing and Communications Manager, DB ESG, said:  

The railway beats in this city’s heart, with both a rich rail heritage stretching back over 200 years and over 11,000 people working in the railway today in this area. Not only does Derby have a central geographical location, but it homes the largest cluster of railway companies certainly in Europe, probably in the world. For this reason, it was selected as the obvious home for Rail Forum Midlands and a large number of global transport companies have offices based here, including my parent company, Deutsche Bahn and many other such as Alstom, Siemens, SNC Lavalin, Hitachi and Balfour Beatty.  

Derby has great transport links with major UK cities, such as London and Birmingham and huge support from non-railway organisations, such as the University of Derby and Marketing Derby. As Engineering thrives here, with non-railway organisations such as Rolls Royce and Toyota manufacturing also in this locality, it encourages transfer of skills, innovation and knowledge between sectors. For example Porterbrook Leasing has recently announced a new collaboration with Rolls Royce to look at technological innovations that reduce carbon emissions. 

Housing GBR in Derby, would show real commitment to our city and its people and highlight the important role that Derby plays in the global rail industry.

Bringing Great British Railways to Derby is a brilliant opportunity to deliver on the Government’s plan to relocate 22,000 civil service jobs out of London by the end of the decade and level up the East Midlands as a whole. 

A campaign video has been created highlighting why Derby and the East Midlands is the perfect place for the home of GBR. 

Individuals and organisations can show their support and back Derby’s bid by joining the ‘Destination Derby’ campaign  and using #DERBYGBR on social media. 

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