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Having spent the past few days at home working on the cottage I’m back on the rails again, heading down to London in readiness for taking the pictures of tonight’s National Rail Awards. I’ve only just realised that this is actually the 15th year I’ve been working at it. Where the hell has the time gone? I started back in 2003, which seems like a lifetime ago. It’s always an amazing event to work at, partially because of the venue (the Grand room of the Grosvenor House hotel in Park Lane, London) but also because it’s a showcase for the best the railway industry has to offer in the way of projects and people. But it’s not all work. It’s also an opportunity for me to catch up with friends and colleagues whom I’ve met or worked with over the years. No doubt a few stories will be told in the bar afterwards!

My next awards ceremony is a little different. I’ll be working at the Community Rail awards in Derby next month. It doesn’t have the glitz and glamour of the NRA, but it’s another great showcase of a different kind – it celebrates the fantastic work of the volunteers (and some paid staff) who look after their local stations or railway lines.

Finally, I’ll be volunteering my services at a slightly different event. The Railway Benefit Fund annual charity ball in Glasgow. It’s one of those nights where the industry comes together to help members of rail staff (current and retired) in need.

Fun times ahead…