Sharing our successes

A New Era For Rail Renewals Delivery Off To A Super Start

Since the launch of the Southern Renewals Enterprise (SRE) at on 1 April 2024, our Rail team are already making fantastic progress delivering rail works within the new transformational enterprise model. Our Electrification and Plant team are responsible for three key packages: NSCD installation, Distribution upgrades and HV Feeder Renewals.

Some of the team’s key achievements include:

Negative Short Circuiting Devices (NSCDs)

The NSCD Package Team successfully completed their first possession at the end of April, a number of key activities were achieved at 6 different locations across Network Rail’s Kent Region (Tudeley, Marden, Wanshurst Green, Cranmore, Headcorn & Dowlestreet). This included road rail vehicle delivery of civil materials and cabling,  installating vortok barrier, existing track feed cable route realignment, ecology surveys, ground investigation, topographical surveys and busbar intrusive surveys. Completion of these activities kickstarted the midweek-daytime installations on the two NSCD packages that we’re working on.

Since the first possession the team have completed more weekend possession to complete deliveries allowing midweek installations and design work to progress. In June the project installed the first set of NSCDs at Marden and Tudeley.

Over the 5 years of CP7 the team will be installing 357 NSCDs at 132 different locations

What is an NSCD?

It provides protection to people working on or around the conductor rail by electrically shorting an isolated section. In the event of an isolated section being re-energised in error, the NSCDs will prevent the conductor rail becoming live, protecting people from danger of electric shock. It also reduces the need for operatives to access the track to apply straps as the equipment is operated from a local control panel positioned off track, normally near an access gate.


Creating a cleaner and greener sustainable legacy

Whilst carrying out a Leadership Tour at Marden NSCD site, James Buckley, Octavius E&P Business Partner Framework Director discussed with the team the importance of exploring biodiversity opportunities on site. Only 72 hours later the team constructed a bug hotel using leftover material onsite.

Well done to the team for taking action to create a positive legacy and utilising unused material, diverting it from landfill.

Feeders package

Since the framework launched the team have successfully installed approximately 10km of of vortok safety barriers across the network over several weekend possessions. This includes 5.8 Km of vortok safety barriers between Farncombe substation and Milford substation, taking advantage of early possessions, allows team to begin main works once designs are approved.

Commenting on the works, Package Manager Paul Medcraft said: “This forward planning will enable the team to work safely during normal midweek hours when the availability of possessions is limited. It minimises subjecting lineside neighbours to out-of-hours working and also benefits our workforce allowing them to work a regular Monday to Friday daytime shift pattern, which is better for fatigue management. “The vortok installed was recovered from previous completed works and re-distributed onto these CP7 HV Feeder routes. This has enabled us to create an efficiency as we don’t need to purchase the barriers from new, and also supports our Cleaner and Greener outcome by reusing materials as part of a Circular Economy”


The Distribution and Electrical team have had a productive start to the SRE, although the main physical works  will not start until September time this year, they have been busy with the development works of  67 CP7 renewals sites. The renewal types vary from HV-AC, HV-DC, 11kv, LV, Transformer and Rectifier Units, Signalling Power, SCADA and telecoms. We plan to commence 18 renewal sites in year one.

The team are currently working with key partners from the Capable Owner, engineering plus representatives from the SID Eco System to explore efficiency ideas and strategies best to bring those to fruition.

We’re excited to be the Electrification and Plant (E&P) partner within this new and innovative model to deliver a £9bn renewals portfolio over the next 10 years.

Southern Renewals Enterprise (SRE)

Network Rail’s Southern Renewals Enterprise (SRE) is the new enterprise model based on the Institution of Civil Engineers’ Project 13 principles. Network Rail has taken the opportunity to build upon the lessons of other major programmes and portfolios to drive greater value and efficiency into project delivery.

By understanding the limitations of traditional contracting models and taking on board lessons from other sectors, SRE aims to deliver greater efficiency by adopting a progressive, value-based model, creating long-term relationships in which all parties are genuinely incentivised to deliver better outcomes for the travelling public and freight partners.

Southern Integrated Delivery (SID)

The SID is part of the Southern Renewals Enterprise (SRE), a new and innovative model introduced across Network Rail’s Southern region at the beginning of Control Period 7 (CP7) in April 2024 to deliver the £9bn renewals portfolio between 2024 and 2034.

The SID partnership combines the strengths and expertise of Network Rail and four business partners – VolkerFitzpatrick (Buildings and Civils), Octavius (Electrification and Plant), AtkinsRéalis (Signalling) and VolkerRail (Track) and will cover Control Period 7 (2024-2029) and Control Period 8 (2029-34).

The SID partnership is the first of its kind and seeking to make transformational change in how renewals work is delivered. This is done by merging the capabilities of Network Rail and its supply chain to develop an integrated approach to delivery. This will maximise efficiencies and collectively incentivise partners to deliver value to taxpayers and the right outcomes for passengers, freight and railway funders.


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