A former trainee has seen two decades of hard work come to fruition after becoming a senior director at Nexus, the public body which owns and manages the Tyne Wear Metro.
Stuart Clarke has secured the role of Metro Infrastructure Director - a role which will see him head up all the maintenance and modernisation work on the 77km Metro network.
Stuart has diligently worked his way to the top after joining Nexus in 1997 as an apprentice electrician.
And now he has been able to realise a long-held ambition to take on the responsibility of a senior management job.
He said: “It’s a great moment in my career and I’m very proud to have been appointed into the role.
“When I think back my time as an apprentice and all the hard work that I’ve put in over the years it is all now so worthwhile. This will hopefully show other apprentices at the start of their careers what it’s possible to achieve if they work hard enough.
“I am really looking forward to the challenge. I’ll be taking a pro-active approach so that we can make improvements and get more reliability from Metro’s vital infrastructure, because that means fewer disruptions for our passengers.”
During his time at Nexus Stuart has gained a degree in engineering and a master’s degree in project management.
He has risen through a series of roles over 22 years, most recently as Head of Renewals, looking after the £350m Metro: all change modernisation programme, a ten-year project which has seen new tracks and overhead lines replaced across the network alongside the modernisation of Metro stations.
He said: “Nexus as an employer has played such a huge part in where I’ve got to today. The organisation’s commitment to training and development is second to none. I’m looking forward to seeing more of our apprentices making their mark in the years to come.”
Chief Operating Officer at Nexus, Martin Kearney, said: “I’m delighted to welcome Stuart into this very important role at Nexus.
“The management and maintenance of the Metro’s infrastructure is at the core of what we do, and I felt Stuart was the right person to take that forward.
“He has worked his way up through the business from the age of 18 when he joined us on an apprenticeship. It’s a great story and he’s great role model for young people who wants a career in the railway industry.”