Network Rail Tributes Paid As Train Named After Popular Man Who Died In A Car Crash

Published on : Friday, September 2, 2016

7457f824bc0e4afaa22cdaa562912117-300x200A popular Network Rail employee who tragically lost his life in a road collision in June has been commemorated by colleagues as a specialist train he worked on has been named after him.

Gavin Roberts, who was 28, moved to Swindon from Dapto, New South Wales, Australia, earlier this year. His positive impact on those around him continued after his death as he was a registered donor which meant his organs helped save the lives of seven people.

He was a construction manager for Network Rail and worked on the High Output Plant system (HOPs) train that is used on the Great Western electrification programme that will see electric trains introduced on the Great Western main line.

Possessing an abundance of energy and zeal, he had a positive impact on those around him and his colleagues, left devastated by his passing, arranged for the HOPs train to be named after him with a ceremony taking place on Wednesday (31 August).


The ceremony was held at Network Rail’s High Output Operations Base in Swindon where the HOPs trains are kept and was attended by Gavin’s partner, friends and colleagues. A moment of reflection was led by The Railway Chaplin, Alan Thorpe, before Network Rail’s chief executive Mark Carne addressed the audience before unveiling the Gavin Roberts plaque.

Chief executive for Network Rail, Mark Carne, said: “It is clear from the reaction of family, friends and colleagues just how special Gavin was to many people. It seems that he touched the lives of all that met him and it seems right to commemorate him by naming the very train he worked on.


“I hope that the Gavin Roberts train will help further keep the memory of him alive and it recognises the work and impact he had on everyone connected with Network Rail.”

Gavin’s line manager, Jim Rollo, said: “Gavin was a larger than life character and made friends wherever his travels took him.


“He took some of the newer members of the team under his wing and not only shared with them his extensive overhead line equipment knowledge; he also helped them grow in confidence within their role.

“Gavin’s family and partner Meg remember him as ‘the Gavin that keeps on giving’. Gavin was only with us for five months but was loved by all and he will always be part of our team.”


Gavin’s girlfriend Meg Williamson and his closest friends Yuga Balakrishna and David Brockie were presented with a replica nameplate to mark the occasion as prayers and some of Gavin’s favourite songs were played.

The Gavin Roberts HOPs train is only the second to be named, the other was named Brunel, after the great engineer, at a ceremony in June 2014, by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth.


The ceremony was filmed by Network Rail and a video of the proceedings will be sent to Gavin’s family who live in Australia and were unable to attend.

Source:- Network Rail

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