International Women's Day 2021 - Tori
“I am so very lucky to have found my way onto the railway, the opportunities it has presented to me and the stability it has provided my family is a wonderful thing in this day and age.”
Tori Weightman, Train Driver at LNER
Tori has been on the railway since 2003, starting at York station as a despatcher before moving to Edinburgh to be a Guard. In 2007 she became a Safety Assessor Manager based in Newcastle. From there she held roles as a Duty Station Manager at Newcastle and then as Guards Manager in Edinburgh.
After the next move to be an Operational Training Manager, Tori decided to take a chance and apply to be a Driver exactly 14 years after her start date. She has since worked through GNER, National Express East Coast, East Coast, Virgin Trains East Coast and is now at LNER.
“I fully appreciate my great fortune to have maintained steady employment through the madness of 2020” Tori says. “I felt a great sense of pride in knowing my small role helped get nurses and doctors to hospitals, teachers to their ‘key worker’ kids and other rail employees to their necessary posts.”
“But I really missed my other colleagues, Guards bringing a cuppa and general mess room chats are a huge social part of my job and with so many people ‘stood down’ or maintaining necessary distance, it became the norm to not have a good chin-wag with anyone else throughout the day.”
Like all of us, Tori is keeping everything crossed for some continuity and a hopeful return to a pre-COVID railway.
“I am so very lucky to have found my way onto the railway, the opportunities it has presented to me and the stability it has provided my family is a wonderful thing in this day and age. I appreciate every person who sniggered when they heard I was applying for something new as much as every Manager that ever gave me the confidence to move out of my comfort zone. Genuinely I am very proud to answer the ‘...and what do you do?’ question.”