Gemini Rail Services has been formed to operate Wolverton Works and Springburn in Glasgow from November 2018, The latter was closed in July. Knorr Bremse Rail Services Ltd accounts lodged at Companies House show that a loss in excess of £50million was reported in the five years of their oeration. We wish the new owners of the business every success and Gemini is contacting the local community, a welcome development.
Welcome to Wolverton Works online. Site updated 4 September 2019.
ANNOUNCEMENT! Phil Marsh and Chris Hillyard were featured on a Channel 5 documentary on Sat 17 August entitled Secrets of The Royal Train.
The Full Works is the official book published to commemorate the Works' 175th anniversary in September 2013. It is available from the author priced £6.50 including P&P from: P Marsh, 14 Milton Road, Willen Village, MK15 9AD.
War Memorial fund
Working with Dave Hilliard from Wolverton Works, Phil Marsh has donated £1000 from the anniversary book to the World War One War Memorial fund. Dave has raised several thousands of pounds working tirelessly towards the project completion.
This commemorates each of the 213 Wolverton Works men who gave their lives in this conflict. For some reason, the LNWR did not erect a War memorial to them. and we resolved to rectify this omission.
Dave Hilliard, supported by Knorr-Bremse, and Gemini Rail raised the required amount and the memorial (seen below remains to be unveiled being actively blocked by St Modwen who do not respond to questions about the project.
Interested in the Royal Train? Visit; www.royaltrain.co.uk Visit the Milton Keynes Miniature Railway at Caldecotte Lake here - www.caldecotteminiaturerailway.co.uk
St Modwen's active blocking of the Works War Memorial prompted Mike Boyd to take direct and public action and has displayed a full sized replica of the Memorial in the Square at Wolverton with the following inscription:
WOLVERTON WORKS MEMORIAL 1914-1918
This is a reproduction of a marble memorial. It was created several years ago following research by David Hilliard, a training manager at the Works, with support from Knorr-Bremse RailServices.
The memorial is a panel displaying, in six columns, 214 names based upon the LNWR Roll of Honour of those employed at Wolverton Works.
The plaque is large, about 8 feet by 4 feet. Its weight demands an appropriate permanent installation. It had been intended that it be sited next to the current works entrance, on the Stratford Road. But negotiations with St Modwens, the site’s owner, failed to agree this placement.
It is currently held in storage by the makers, RGR Memorials.
Representatives of Wolverton & Greenleys Town Council are negotiating a suitable location. This memorial is significant to many in Wolverton and its surrounding communities.
The latest chapter in the Works 181 year long history:
Knorr Bremse bought the rail vehicle renovation businesses at Wolverton and Springburn on 26th August 2013 from Railcare’s
Administrators for £6.6million. The new company was named Knorr-Bremse Rail Systems (UK) Ltd registered at Companies House on 19 August 2013 with just one share issued. The initial set of accounts covering to the end of 2014 showed a turnover was £ 34.1million with an
operating loss of £18.4million with a shareholder deficit £13.2million. MD Paul Goodhand wrote: “Profitability of vehicle refurbishment projects has initially been poor, but as a result of intensive work to improve tendering, purchasing procedures and project management, it is now improving”. It clearly didn't! as the next financial year showed a turnover of £54million, an increased shareholder deficit of £13.4million. Year three ending 31 December 2016 accounts showed an operating loss of £15million explained by …significant losses on a number of contracts and provision of £1.8million against obsolete stock…. Parent company loans had reached £46.5million,
The final trading year ending 31 December 2017, KBRS reported a loss of £5.3million against a turnover of £67.9million with the parent company loan now £53.8million. The Annual report says “We anticipate and improvement in financial results in 2018.” But accounting note 1.3 in the report says the parent company is considering selling the Company and is at an advanced stage of negotiation with a prospective purchaser. It also outlined the poor financial position stating …..the company has a history of losses and net current liabilities of £35million at 31 Dec 2017. The intercompany demand loan was £53.8million at the end of 2017.
On 9th November 2018, KBRS was renamed Gemini Rail Services UK Ltd and the takeover legally completed. The KBRS Cessation certificate was lodged at Companies House on 31st October 2018 and five years of heavy losses for them ended. Gemini Rail Services was in business..
Right: The new Gemini signage at the entrance and the main line rail connection.
John Kitchen at work and one of his paintings