Lucy Prior, International Trade Director at the Rail Alliance has been recognised in the Queen’s 2018 Birthday Honours list with an MBE for services to rail exports.
As a Director of the Rail Alliance with over 12 years of experience in the rail sector, Lucy’s dedication and relentless energy and enthusiasm (not to mention her vast and diverse knowledge and experience) has helped hundreds of businesses. With a key focus on addressing business challenges faced by organisations both in the UK and overseas, much of the work Lucy has been involved in has specifically been around developing and identifying export opportunities. Lucy also leads on the day-to-day engagement with the European Railway Clusters Initiative (ERCI) of which the Rail Alliance were founder members in 2010. ERCI enables UK companies to access EU wide R&D collaborative opportunities and provide information to members Shift2Rail opportunities within the wider Horizon 2020 context . Most recently Lucy has become involved in a new exciting programme called PERES (Promoting European Railway Excellence outSide of the EU) which was launched earlier this year. Being able to apply her expertise in SME export business development in addition to heading up the Rail Alliance’s official “sector specialist” Trade Challenge Partner status with the Department of International Trade (DIT), Lucy has been able to apply an empathy to the role in helping the DIT, UK Export Finance (UKEF) and The Intellectual Property Office (IPO) reach a wider audience.
In response to receiving this accolade and recognition, Lucy said, “Right now I am still all the clichés: humbled, grateful, shocked and (one I have use an awful lot) flabbergasted! It was a genuine surprise to be recognised in this way as I received this for just doing what I do. I love encouraging companies to think about the why and how of exporting and genuinely love working with our colleagues within the Department for International Trade, many of whom I have considered friends as well as colleagues from day one in the sector. More recently I have the pleasure of working with the ERCI team, a pan-EU initiative that started well before I joined the Rail Alliance crew and this has just enriched my understanding à l’international immeasurably. I really hope I can continue to support the DIT and ERCI achieve their aims whilst simultaneously helping UK companies on both their domestic and export trading journeys. Export is such an important part of the jigsaw, and so I hope that this news can encourage people not only to (re)consider exporting, but to come along and meet the DIT and ERCI team and many more at the export showcase zone within Rail Live. I have had the genuine honour of curating this particular part of the show and I would encourage everyone to come along, as a world of opportunity really does await.”
Colin Flack, Rail Alliance Chairman said, ‘We are such a close-knit team, it is fantastic when one of our family gets recognised like this. The Rail Alliance exists to support the rail supply chain and the wider industry by helping individual businesses to navigate what is often a complex landscape. Members of the Rail Alliance can take direct advantage of the combined knowledge and skills of the team which can be accessed either from just speaking to us on an one-to-one basis or from attending Rail Alliance networking events that cover a myriad of key topics from infrastructure related themes to rolling stock and the digital railway not to mention joining one of the programmes such as Rail Mentor or industry workshops. I am immensely proud that a key member of the team has been recognised in this way, Lucy is a real asset not just to the Rail Alliance and its members, but to the sector as a whole.’
With Rail Live 2018 taking place in a matter of days (20 & 21 June), visitors and exhibitors can also take advantage of Lucy’s expertise as the Export Zone – a brand new feature at the show this year to assist businesses looking to either take the first step to export or to increase their exports in new markets.