GBRf celebrate longstanding employee with loco naming

GB Railfreight are thrilled to announce the naming of a loco after longstanding colleague Chris Hopcroft MBE on Thursday 5 December.

Managing Director John Smith named a new Class 66 loco after Chris, with the ceremony taking place at Bristol Temple Meads station. Chris, accompanied by his wife and two children, was met by 50 of his closest friends and colleagues.

Chris spent the last 60 years on the railways, providing outstanding work and dedication to all his roles, the most recent as a train manager for GBRf. Throughout his long career he has trained up colleagues and passed on vital technical knowledge of operations.

His passion for, and service to, the railways was recognised in 1994 with an MBE for services to the safety of young people. Throughout his career, Chris has worked tirelessly to ensure every job he’s ever had was done to the best of his ability. The commitment that he has demonstrated every day since first starting has shown him to be an exemplary figure and inspired colleagues across the industry.

GBRf Managing Director John Smith said: “It was my pleasure to name this Class 66 loco after Chris. Having started off at the bottom of the ladder and worked his way up, Chris has boundless experience, and knows the sector better than anyone.

“As a 42-year railway person, I am a mere beginner when compared to the iconic Chris Hopcroft who has clocked an amazing 60 years. I’m not sure in the modern world that this will ever be bettered. Not only has Chris contributed to our industry over a huge period of time, he has been the consummate professional throughout and has the wonderful habit of reverting to happy when things are going slightly awry.

“He has a reputation in the industry for being a highly reliable and skilled colleague who makes time to pass on his expertise and support modernisation in all aspects of the railway. We are proud to name this loco after him.”

Chris Hopcroft said:“This has come as a complete surprise! Words cannot describe how much this means to me. Trains are not just a job for me – they’re my life and passion.

“I love being part of the GBRf family and I am delighted so many of my colleagues were able to attend this special day. I am over the moon and cannot thank John enough for this.”