Women signallers making history at Sellafield in Cumbria

Sellafield signal box on the Cumbrian Coast Line has become the first to be entirely staffed by women since the Second World War. The milestone was reached last month when trainee Amy Byrne joined Rebecca Rennoldson and Holly Williams to create the three woman team. They work in solo shifts in the Victorian-engineered signal box to keep passengers and freight moving on the picturesque Cumbrian rail route.  Amy had just qualified as a signaller after being a helicopter engineer in the Royal Navy; Rebecca had started at Network Rail in 2015 and decided a career change to be a signaller and Holly had been working on the railway for just over three years.

”Wendy Potter, Network Rail operations manager for Lancashire and Cumbria, said: “The fact that all three signalling positions at Sellafield are now held by women did not happen by design – it was down to the fact that they were the best people who applied for the job. I’ve worked in the rail industry for over 25 years and I’m really encouraged this shows that more women are applying for roles in rail. My message is simple, forget the old-fashioned stereotypes because whoever you are, you could have just the skills to work on the railway.”

Network Rail is committed to being an inclusive employer and offering equal opportunities for everyone.  (Photo by RailBusinessDaily)