The Road Surface Treatment Association (RSTA) has announced that chief executive Dr Howard Robinson will be standing down from 1 January.
Dr Howard Robinson
He will be taking up a new post as managing director of ASI Solutions Limited - best known for RHiNOPHALT, a penetrative asphalt preservative.
Dr Robinson spent nearly 10 years as RSTA chief executive, during which time the trade body grew to represent 87 member companies that provide surface treatments and techniques to maximise the service life of UK roads.
A well-known and much-admired figure in the sector, Dr Robinson always combined great expertise with a forthright, outspoken lobbying style on behalf of the roads sector while at the RSTA.
The RSTA has appointed Mike Harper as its new chief executive. Mr Harper has 30 years' experience in highways materials and joins the RSTA from materials specialists GCP Applied Technologies (formerly Stirling Lloyd), where he headed their highways activities.
He has been active with the RSTA for the last eight years on numerous committees, working groups and industry events, previously holding positions as a sector chairman (high friction surfacing), RSTA chairman (in 2015) and as RSTA director, and is the current chief technical officer.
Mr Harper said: 'Howard has very much become the figurehead of the RSTA over the last decade and has represented the interests of our members with many of the major highways client bodies. The RSTA provides quality guidance and impartial advice as well as training hundreds of highways engineers every year throughout the UK, and I look forward to leading the organisation as we continue to support our clients and members.'
Dr Robinson said: 'Mike and I have worked closely together over the last eight years and Mike’s appointment as CEO from January provides a seamless handover for our members and clients in the many committees and working groups that we support. I wish him every success in the role.'
The Institute of Highway Engineers (IHE) has announced the recent death of Geoff Bray, an inaugural member of the traffic signs committee that it set up to run its annual conference and other events.
It described Mr Bray as ‘a pioneer of excellence and simplicity in traffic signing and street lighting, and their relationship to urban design’.
The IHE said the traffic signs committee became particularly active when the Department for Transport encouraged it to create a professional accreditation for traffic sign designers. ‘Lots of meetings and documents resulted, in all of which Mr Bray was a key participant.’
The Professional Certificate that this group produced was first available in 2007 and since then has become the de-facto standard for people working in this field. Mr Bray was one of the initial assessors, ‘a task he undertook with great professionalism and geniality towards the candidates,’ the IHE said.
It described Mr Bray as ‘a true gentleman’, who was always helpful and engaging and a great expert on traffic signing generally. ‘But his outstanding contribution to signing and lighting was on schemes such as the award-winning Kensington High Street, for which his sense of the aesthetic came to the fore. At a time when this was unfashionable, he was fully aware of the concept of the road as a place where people lived and worked and could enjoy passing through. This led him to be a champion of good street design and the avoidance of clutter, and he jointly led several training days promoting this concept.’
The IHE said Mr Bray made an enormous contribution to improving the design and use of traffic signs, both in his own work and his encouragement of others to strive for excellence. It added that he will be sorely missed by all who knew him through the IHE and in the world of traffic engineering and urban design.
The Office of Rail and Road (ORR) has appointed John Larkinson as interim chief executive as it seeks to replace Joanna Whittington on a permanent basis.
Mr Larkinson, who was the regulator’s director of railway markets and economics, was appointed following an internal competition.
Ms Whittington left the ORR on 5 October to take up the position of director general, energy and security at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.
The ORR said an open competition for the role of chief executive will be advertised in due course.
Chair Stephen Glaister said: ‘I thank Joanna for her accomplished leadership over nearly three years and wish her all the best success in the future.
‘I am pleased to welcome John as the interim chief executive. He has a wealth of rail knowledge and experience and is well equipped to deliver the role to the high standard we have all come to expect.’
Mr Larkinson previously held a number of senior roles at the ORR, including director of planning and performance and director of economic regulation. He joined the regulator from the Strategic Rail Authority.
He is an economist by background and has held a range of transport related posts in central government and consultancy.
In previous role, Mr Larkinson was responsible for the 2018 Periodic Review of Network Rail, the ORR’s consumer role, decisions on track and station access and industry financial analysis.
The seminar programme for Scotland's largest free conference and exhibition dedicated to traffic, transport and infrastructure, Traffex Road Expo Scotland, is rapidly taking shape.
Attendees will benefit from a number of thought-provoking sessions that will examine topics such as technology on the road network, the development of training and education for those working in the sector, how we can create more effective use of road space, and many more.
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Gordon Mackay, Chair, SCOTS & Head of Roads & Transportation Services, South Lanarkshire Council
Peter McGillion, Head of ITS Systems, Transport Scotland
Will Garrett, Spatial Policy Manager: Place Directorate, The City of Edinburgh Council
Paul Grayston, Divisional Director: Transport Technology, Jacobs
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Whether you're hearing from senior members of the industry in the Transport Scotland and SCOTS seminar theatre, learning about the latest innovations on the exhibition floor or networking with over 1,200 like-minded professionals, your time at Traffex Road Expo will be well spent.
This year's event will be taking place on Wednesday 31 October and Thursday 1 November and will be co-located with Bridges Scotland at the Royal Highland Centre in Edinburgh
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Running alongside Traffex Road Expo Scotland and Bridges Scotland will be CAV Scotland 2018, a Transport Scotland event, organised by Transport Network, that brings together global experts in connected and autonomous vehicles with live demonstrations.
Mark Kemp has rejoined Hertfordshire County Council as director of environment and infrastructure.
He was formerly director of growth, strategy and highways services at Buckinghamshire County Council, where he was responsible for developing transport and growth strategies from 2016.
Mr Kemp gets his feet under his desk
Mr Kemp has also been working with the Local Enterprise Partnership and representing Buckinghamshire for the transport element of the England's Economic Heartland partnership of councils and local enterprise partnerships.
He started his new role at Hertfordshire on 3 September.
He has over 30 years' experience of a range of roles in local government covering the broad environment, transport and property agendas, including working for Hertfordshire more than 15 years ago.