Network Rail apprentice hits the track running in Eastleigh

Natalie Burton from Portsmouth joins the Eastleigh team with a specialism in telecoms. Revealing why she applied to join, she said: “I felt I needed a new challenge in life and to do something that would start me off on a career path that I could stay on for a long time. When I saw this apprenticeship, it seemed to fit with what I wanted and I could see myself progressing from here.

She added: “Whilst this is not my first job, working for Network Rail has helped show me what it is like working for such a large company and the structure of it. Being at HMS Sultan I have learnt a great amount which I may not have had the chance to if I were not here. It has taught me a great deal about myself and working and living here has made me feel more independent and responsible for my own learning.”

The Network Rail apprentices specialise in track, signalling, telecoms and electrification and plant. Over the next two years they will work under supervision gaining vital experience as they train to become maintenance technicians. They will return to HMS Sultan for further courses and training throughout this time.

Steve Featherstone, director of maintenance at Network Rail said: “Getting out on the railway, learning on-the job, responding to incidents and gaining experience from our specialists is a vital part of our apprenticeship. Every day they will be part of a team making sure we get three million people to work and home again. It’s rewarding and of great value to Britain.

“The railway is becoming ever more popular and we have big plans for making it more reliable, efficient and better value for money; our apprentices will play a big role in that.”


He added: “We now have the building blocks in place so that beyond their apprenticeships, our engineers can undertake an HNC, a foundation degree and then a full degree in engineering. They can earn while they learn and go as far as their aptitude, attitude and ambition can take them.”

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