Train operator, Northern, is looking to recruit as many as 280 drivers and conductors across the North of England in 2023.

New recruits will join the team responsible for running Northern’s more than 2,500 services a day to more than 500 stations and are being recruited as part of a natural replenishment of the workforce as other team members retire, earn promotion or move on to the next stage of their career outside Northern.

Both roles require no previous rail experience, with full training at Northern’s academies in Leeds and Manchester provided.

The driver roles, which are based in Carlisle, Darlington, Hull, Leeds, Newcastle, Sheffield, Skipton and York, come with a starting salary of £23,000 a year, rising to £54,500 once fully qualified.

The conductor roles are based in Carlisle, Doncaster, Harrogate, Huddersfield, Hull, Leeds, Middlesbrough, Newcastle, Sheffield, Skipton and York, with salaries starting at £22,000, rising to £29,000 once fully qualified.

More information and details of how to register for recruitment alerts can be found at: www.northernrailway.co.uk/careers

Tricia Williams, chief operating officer at Northern, said: “These are fantastic roles for anyone passionate about helping connect people and places across the region.

“We’ll be recruiting throughout the year – so people should register for job alerts on our website.”

With such a large employee intake on the horizon, Northern is actively encouraging women to apply as part of a push to improve the male-female balance of its workforce. They are also seeking to attract more applicants from under-represented ethnicities to ensure they reflect the communities Northern serves.

Williams added: “The rail industry has made great strides in many areas of diversity in recent years – but there is still much to be done.

“Drivers and conductors represent a huge proportion of our workforce – if we can attract more people from a wider range of ethnicities and women into these roles, that’ll make a real difference.”

Central to Northern’s recruitment campaign is a plan to attract the best and brightest candidates from other sectors who hadn’t previously considered the rail industry.

Citing some of the interesting career histories of its 2021/22 intake, Williams said: “Some of the people at the control of our trains today started their career in the prison service, as cabin crew, as social care workers, in a veterinary practice and at least one as a wedding planner! No-one should think either of these roles ‘isn’t for them’ – the railway has much to offer.”

Northern is now operating a new timetable. All customers, especially those who have made regular journeys on the same train times, are advised to use the new ‘Check My Timetable’ feature on its website to see the changes specific to their local station.