Melissa has worked for SYPTE as our Rail Development Manager since 2018. The skills and experience Melissa gained during 15 years working in the rail industry are now being used to make sure rail services meet the needs of people across South Yorkshire. Melissa explains:
“My key objective is to ensure South Yorkshire gets the best possible rail services. We want to increase patronage on rail, retaining and recruiting new customers, and ensure people have a good experience at our stations. My job is all about meeting the needs of passengers, so we petition for improvements to rail services in the region.
“Alongside colleagues from Sheffield City Region, I represent South Yorkshire at Transport for the North meetings on projects including Northern Powerhouse Rail and HS2. We are there to raise rail issues specific to this region, for example highlighting capacity problems and overcrowding hotspots and calling for new rolling stock.
“I also work collaboratively with rail operators to make sure they are delivering on their franchise obligations and, wherever possible, to encourage them to go over and above to offer passengers better services and stations. Our team also supports, funds and initiates community rail projects.
“When I spotted the job at SYPTE I was interested in the new challenge that working for a Passenger Transport Executive would give me. I liked the idea of seeing the rail industry from a different perspective and using everything I know to influence and make positive changes. The focus of the public sector is different; its driven by people and providing the best possible services rather than making profit.
“SYPTE’s city centre location was a real appeal for me. I live with my partner in the Peak District and we both commute by train on the Hope Valley line; he goes to Manchester and I come to Sheffield. It’s a much shorter and easier journey to work than I had before which is great for my quality of life. Having access to a good pension scheme is important to me too."