GB Railfreight, the third largest rail freight operator in the United Kingdom, has named two class 66 locomotives Joanne and Annette in honour of two long-serving members of staff at a special naming day ceremony.
A train carrying 124 employees of GB Railfreight left King’s Cross, bound for Peterborough on Wednesday 28th June, bookended by the two class 66 locomotives.
The naming ceremony took place at 12.30pm among the colleagues, family, and friends who made the journey in old, beautifully maintained Pullman carriages.
The locomotives were officially named by John Smith, Managing Director of GB Railfreight, Joanne Marshall, Head of Communications, and Annette Payne, a Train Service Controller. The guests of honour were then presented with commemorative replicas of the engines and the name plaques that will adorn them as they move about the country’s railways.
John Smith said:
“Both Joanne and Annette are hugely valued members of the team with almost twenty years of service between them. Our staff are the lifeblood of GB Railfreight and we are delighted to be able to recognise their contribution to our success in this way.”
Joanne Marshall said:
“This is a huge honour, I am very proud to think that my namesake will be out on the rail network, working hard for GB Railfreight too.”
(Images Courtesy GBRf/Westbourne Communications)
Annette Payne said:
“I was very moved to have been chosen to be recognised in this way. This kind of honour shows the value GB Railfreight places on its employees and why it’s such a fantastic place to work.”
The journey back was a celebration of Joanne and Annette, and the work they do for GB Railfreight. It was also a scenic ride through the East Anglian countryside as the train took the long way back to King’s Cross, passing villages, towns, and spotters with long lenses, glimpsing for the first time the newly-christened Joanne(66776) and Annette (66777).