Posted 7th July 2015 | 1 Comment

Rail industry mourns 'unrivalled' spokesman

THE death has been announced of Neil Harvey, who was familiar to many as a leading railway industry spokesman and supporter. 

Mr Harvey was most recently general manager of the Derby & Derbyshire Rail Forum, but before that he was communication director of Bombardier Transportation in the city for many years. Friends and colleagues have been paying tributes to his professionalism and speaking of their 'great sadness'.

Heidi Lee, who worked with Neil in the communications department at Bombardier, said: "I am personally heartbroken by this news. He was my mentor, friend and colleague, and a huge hole will be left in my life."

DDRF chairman Colin Walton said: “The entire Derbyshire, East Midlands and wider railway family is devastated by today’s sad news.

"Neil has been my friend and colleague for almost 40 years.

"Neil began as a carriage works’ apprentice and progressed to the very highest level of his profession as Bombardier’s communication director, earning an unrivalled reputation across the railway industry for professionalism, skill and the ability to get the job done.

“Most recently Neil became general manager of the Derby and Derbyshire Rail Forum, and during his desperately short tenure he oversaw unparalleled growth in both our membership and reach -- reflected in the DDRF’s growing reputation in Whitehall and railways worldwide.

“All our thoughts are with his family, especially Neil’s adored wife Lisa and his two sons Mark and Ben, in whom he took the very greatest of pride.”

Former Virgin Trains CEO and British Rail sector director Chris Green also paid tribute to Neil's work: "Neil was the perfect ambassador for Bombardier - and went on to become the perfect ambassador for the rail Industry. He did great work for so many of us, and will be sorely missed," he said.

Railnews managing editor Sim Harris added: "He was a true friend to many people -- and to the wider railway industry, which he supported passionately. We will all miss him very much."

Reader Comments:

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  • Sharon Christians, London

    Neil Harvey helped shepherd Bombardier Transportation UK through one of the most difficult periods in its history. The depth of his experience was equal to the warmth of his personality. He will be greatly missed by many.