HomePeopleEventsThe best of the rail industry on show at Rail Live 2022

The best of the rail industry on show at Rail Live 2022


Much of the rail supply industry gathered at Porterbrook’s Long Marston Rail Innovation Centre, near Stratford upon Avon, for the annual Rail Live exhibition, held over two days 22-23 June 2022.

Britain’s largest outdoor rail show is always at the mercy of the weather.  This year, exhibitors and visitors alike suffered scorching temperatures on the Wednesday and cooler weather and sprinkles of rain on the Thursday.

There was the usual range of exhibits, from the smallest components through to huge road-rail plant. Differing ways to build station platform extensions featured on several stands, as did large piling attachments for excavators. Visitors were able to enquire about everything from insurance (Jobson James Rail) to huge rail-milling machines (Linsinger).

Perhaps unsurprisingly, it was the larger plant that caught the eye. Displays by QTS and Van Elle, as well as machine converters GOS Engineering and Allan J Hargreaves, were popular throughout the show.

Smaller vehicles could be seen on the Aquarius/Permaquip stand. The announcement that the two companies would get together was made exactly one year earlier, at Rail Live 2021.

This year the combined companies were showing off both road-rail converted Isuzu D-Max pickup and smaller tools and trolleys, including features which are so new they are still awaiting Network Rail approval. An Aquarius Land Rover conversion was also being used by Fugro as a mount for its rail survey scanner. (image credit Aquarius Permaquip)

There were a few unexpected surprises. The Revolution very light rail vehicle was there on a joint Eversholt Rail / Transport Design International stand, giving rides to interested passengers.

Two of Rail Adventure’s new Class 43 power cars were also on show, looking resplendent in the sunshine.

A display of various species of hawks, used to drive pigeons and seagulls from railway stations, was interesting to see, but the unexpected exhibitor involved was Rentokil, perhaps better known for more mundane types of pest control.

British Transport Police had its own liveried rail vehicle, but this turned out to be not a new training aid (though it could be) but a redundant ex-West Midlands tram reliveried for the occasion.

Network Rail had a ‘village’ of several stands, and a conference took place over both days of the show. A range of industry-leading figures spoke to the Rail Live audience, including Transport Scotland’s rail director Bill Reeve and Network Rail chairman Sir Peter Hendy.

All in all, it was a welcome event. Visitor numbers seemed good on the first day, a little lower on the second, perhaps due to the train strike.  Plans are already being made for Rail 2023, with dates still to be confirmed.


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