The University of Huddersfield’s Institute of Railway Research (IRR) has been awarded a Queen’s Anniversary Prize, for research and development that has brought significant improvements to the railway industry.
The award, one of the most coveted honours in Higher Education, is conferred after scrutiny by the Prime Minister and approval from Her Majesty the Queen.
The citation states that IRR won the award for “Innovative research in rail engineering, to improve safety and efficiency through technological developments in the interface of rolling stock and track”.
IRR director Professor Simon Iwnicki and Huddersfield University Vice-Chancellor Professor Bob Cryan were invited to Buckingham Palace, where they were presented with the Royal award, on behalf of the IRR team, by HRH the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall.
Simon Iwnicki said: “On behalf of the whole team, I am delighted that we have been awarded this prize. It is a wonderful recognition of the work that we have been carrying out and the impact this is now having on the railway industry.”
Queen’s Anniversary Prizes, which are part of the UK’s honours system but are awarded to institutions rather than individuals, were first presented in 1993 to recognise universities and colleges that had carried out ground-breaking pioneering research in a wide range of disciplines.
The prizes are awarded after highly detailed submissions are assessed in an independent review process that takes several months and involves a wide range of consultations with experts. A shortlist is drawn up and discussed by the Awards Council of the Royal Anniversary Trust. Finally, a list of recommended institutions is presented to HM The Queen for approval, on the Prime Minister’s advice.
This is the University of Huddersfield’s second Anniversary Prize. Its first, received in 2015, was for its world-class research in the field of new music.