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Railhub Archive
2005-02-25 DfT-001
Department for Transport


Appointment of rail Director General

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Department for Transport

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Department for Transport

Appointment of rail Director General

25 Feb 2005 00:00
source Department for Transport
type Press release

Dr. Mike Mitchell has been appointed as Director General of Railways at the Department for Transport.

Mike will head the Department's new Rail Group. It will ensure the Government is able to set the strategy and level of public expenditure for the country's railways. It will be responsible for letting contracts for train franchises and for securing improved performance and value for money on the rail network. The Director General will report direct to the Permanent Secretary and is a member of the Department's Board.

Mike was appointed following an open competition. He has over 30 years experience in the transport sector working with British Rail and FirstGroup. He was FirstGroup's UK Chief Operating Officer, responsible for its bus and rail divisions and is currently its Business Development Director. He will take up his post at the Department on the 1 May.

Alistair Darling, Secretary of State for Transport said: "I am very pleased that Mike will be taking up this key position. He has worked in transport for more than 30 years and has the skills necessary to ensure the Department can carry out its new role within a streamlined rail industry. His appointment is another important step in implementing the Rail White Paper."

Mike Mitchell said:
"I am very excited to be taking up this post. It will be a challenge but I am confident that the Department in partnership with the rail industry will be able to drive up rail performance."

Notes to Editors

1. Mike worked for British Rail for 16 years. In 1986 he joined FirstGroup and started managing bus operations in and around Edinburgh, Aberdeen and later in the North West of England. In 1998 he took over as Director of FirstGroup's UK Rail Division and in 2001 as Chief Operating Officer for all the company's Rail and Bus operations in the UK. Currently he is the company's Business Development Director responsible for leading the Group's expansion into European transport markets. Mike has a PhD from Aberdeen University is 56 and married with 2 sons.

2. His appointment will be on a three year contract.

3. The Department also announced the following senior appointments to the DfT Rail Group:

* Director of Rail Projects: Graham Dalton
* Director of Rail Strategy and Finance: Mark Lambirth
* Director of Rail Service Delivery: Gary Backler
* Head of Customer and Stakeholder Relations: Peter McCarthy * Head of Rail Procurement: Richard Horton
* The post of Director of Technical Professional is still to be recruited.

Public Enquiries: 020 7944 8300
Department for Transport Website:

Railhub Archive ::: 2005-02-25 DfT-001


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