Chris Smith has been appointed the new engineering manager at Talyllyn Railway after gaining a wealth of experience in the rail engineering industry both in the mainline and heritage sectors.
He has also been a regular volunteer for the past 20 years and a qualified fireman on Talyllyn Railway. Having served his apprenticeship as a mechanical fitter, he has worked on mainline diesel locomotives and was the lead engineer on the overhaul of more than 600 wagons for Freightliner, as well as a spell with Metronet in London.
In addition, he has been employed as a contract fitter for the new-build A1 class steam locomotive Tornado and, more recently, was employed at Arriva’s Eastleigh maintenance depot.
In the heritage railway sector, as well as his work with Tornado, Mr Smith has also led the team restoring the National Railway Museum owned Schools class steam locomotive, Cheltenham, on the Mid Hants Railway, where he is a volunteer driver and has undertaken many engineering roles.
Talyllyn Railway Company chairman David Ventry said: “We are delighted to welcome Chris to this important position on the railway. There was a strong field of candidates but we felt Chris offered us what we were looking for in a new engineering manager.
“Of course, he is already familiar with the railway and is aware of the challenges that the job brings.”
Mr Smith said: “I am very much looking forward to working on Talyllyn Railway following 20 years’ involvement as a volunteer and having the opportunity to bring skills and experiences from the heritage and mainline railway industries.
“My family and I are also very excited about having the chance to come to live in Tywyn.”