NETWORK Rail has appointed a new route director on its north and east route who will be responsible for running the railway in Yorkshire.

Jason Hamilton, who takes up the role in April, will take over the role from Matt Rice, who is leaving the organisation after four and a half years as route director to join train operator Northern.

Mr Hamilton is in his 16th year at Network Rail and most recently has been a part of the east coast route’s executive team as route programme director, leading a multi-disciplinary maintenance, renewals, and response principal contractor organisation.

He has previous experience working for Network Rail in major projects on the Great Western and South East routes as part of the Crossrail Programme before moving north and continuing in further leadership roles.

He will hold overall responsibility for the day-to-day running of the rail network throughout Yorkshire and the North East, and will also oversee key infrastructure projects.

He said: “This part of the network hosts major arterial routes across the north of England, connecting major towns and cities which are so crucial to our passengers. It will also see transformational infrastructure investment over the coming years and plays a major role in the north of England economy.

“There is already some very good work taking place by colleagues across the route and I am looking forward to seeing that first hand as I visit various parts of the network.

“Train travel is a vitally important and sustainable way to journey, and I want to make sure that our passengers’ experience is a positive one as they travel on the network, whether that be through short-term reliability and punctuality improvements or via the major projects that will deliver a better railway for the future.”