TRAIN operator Northern – which runs services on the Airedale line – has won recognition for its efforts to boost diversity within the rail industry.

The company has been shortlisted for the Top Employer of the Year accolade in the Women in Rail Awards.

Northern will find out at a ceremony in Camden next month whether it has taken the prestigious honour in the awards, which aim to showcase rail workers and companies that have made significant contributions towards improving diversity and inclusion.

The firm recently launched a campaign encouraging more women to consider becoming train drivers.

To coincide with the end of Women’s History Month, Northern released a video calling for more female applicants.

Tricia Williams, chief operating officer at Northern, says: "We have hundreds of train drivers in our business but less than ten per cent are women – we want to change that.

"Driving trains is for everyone, whether you’re just starting out in your career, are a working parent or are looking for a career change.

"Northern is a great place to work for everyone and our aim is to create a culture where people feel valued and included."

She said the company, which is the second largest train operator in the UK, was delighted to be amongst the Women in Rail Awards finalists.

"It is amazing news and comes right on the back of an inspiring Women’s History Month," she added.

"In the last few weeks alone we’ve seen women at Northern take centre stage in a special exhibition celebrating 'women in uniform', and we released the video which showcases some of the female drivers here at the company.

"I’m very proud to champion Northern’s work in this area and I’d like to thank everyone at Women in Rail for recognising our efforts."

It is the second time this year the company has earned acclaim for its equality work.

In January, it was shortlisted for Large Organisation of the Year by campaign group Northern Power Women.

Emma Chester is one of Northern’s newest driver recruits.

She says: "As a young person, it can be hard to pick the right career. I wanted to get into a job that had long-term prospects, a good salary and a place where I could train while I worked.

"No one really talked about the railways when I was in school, but I always knew I wanted to do something a little bit different. Joining Northern has been the best decision I've ever made."

For more information, go to