The Great Transport Debate is a unique event designed to bring together leaders, experts, innovators and 200 informed professionals from every sector of the industry to debate the most pressing issues and challenges facing UK passenger transport networks today – and in the future
BY Neil Micklethwaite
DATE: Thursday 28 September 2023
TIME: 10am- 5:30pm
VENUE: Concorde Conference Centre, Manchester Airport
The Great Transport Debate is being held at a time when all modes of transport, rail, aviation, and road, are an almost daily source of headlines, conversation and, in many cases, concern.
The problem for those of us who work in the transport industry is that when we do have a chance to get together and talk, it’s at industry-specific events in which the issues covered rarely stray beyond the bounds of the industry concerned. And the standard presentation plus 10-minute Q&A leaves little time for real debate.
Staying within industry boundaries makes it virtually impossible to debate the bigger, more strategic questions such as ‘what is preventing transport from being easier to access and how can we, collectively overcome this?’.
Similarly, we can’t have a meaningful debate about ‘what’s preventing the UK from having a joined-up transport system?’ without the involvement of the different transport sectors that would have to work together to deliver an integrated, multi-modal transport system that empowers passengers to reach their destination via the fastest, most reliable, and safest combination of methods.
Working for CMAC Group, an organisation that sits at the intersection of different transport industry sectors, allows myself and my colleagues to see transport challenges and issues from all sides, including that of the passenger.
We are very often the glue that binds the transport ecosystem together, usually at times of greatest need! In very simple terms, that’s the role we’re playing in sponsoring The Great Transport Debate.
The Great Transport Debate is designed to give transport industry professionals the time and space to debate the big issues amongst industry leaders, experts, and innovators from every mode of transport
The Great Transport Debate is designed to give transport industry professionals the time and space to debate the big issues amongst industry leaders, experts, and innovators from every mode of transport.
The event boasts a star-studded bill of six speakers and 16 panellists, each of whom will share insights and opinions honed by their personal experience.
Speakers include: Martin Jones, CEO at CAVU; Nigel Stevens, chair at Transport Focus; Clive Wratten, chief executive at Business Travel Association (BTA); and Christian Schreyer, group chief executive at The Go-Ahead Group.
We’re very pleased to have Alex Hickman from Teneo, a strategic and communications consultancy, as a speaker. In March 2020, Alex became the prime minister’s special adviser on business. In this role, Alex worked closely with the prime minister and ministers during the Covid pandemic and built coalitions inside and outside government to progress the prime minister’s business priorities, including the net zero transition.
All presenters and panel members have been asked to be as informal as possible; to speak from the heart in sharing their experience, insights, and passion for transport.
The panellists include leaders from a wide range of transport and travel sectors including: Jacqueline Starr, Rail Delivery Group; Rachael Farrington, VisitBritain/VisitEngland, Simon McNamara, IATA; Jake Kelly, Network Rail; Clare Welsh, Wellman Cars & Taxi Alliance; James Hammet, UK Tram; Claudette Anderson, Go Jauntly, and our own Steve Turner, founder, and CEO at CMAC Group.
You can find details of speakers and panel members and book your tickets at: www.greattransportdebate.com
Without active audience participation, there won’t be a debate. We’re encouraging participants to interact throughout the event: asking questions, voting, and sharing their thoughts and opinions
Without active audience participation, there won’t be a debate. We’re encouraging participants to interact throughout the event: asking questions, voting, and sharing their thoughts and opinions.
Tickets are limited to 200 – and they’re already going fast!
The Great Transport Debate offers a chance for professionals from all sectors of the industry to make their voice heard, engage in thought-provoking discussions, gain valuable insights, and network with influential figures in the transport sector.
I think we’d all agree that the passenger transport industry is at a critical crossroads, however, we believe that by coming together to share knowledge and insights as an industry collective at events such as The Great Transport Debate, we can, and we will, make transport better for passengers!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Neil Micklethwaite is chief operating officer at CMAC Group
This article appears inside the latest issue of Passenger Transport.
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