Who's who in CRIL

Carl Benfield

Vice Chair

Carl left the Royal Engineers in 2007 after 16 years' service and went on to run a renewable energy company for 9 years.  More recently he has been a business and management consultant to small and medium-sized enterprises.

Carl is also a District Councillor for the Green Party, and whilst CRIL is apolitical, he sees it as an essential way of reducing carbon emissions in the region.

Patrick Scanlon


Bio to follow

James Parks

Campaign Manager

Bio to follow

Kim Coe


Born just before the Beeching axe came down on the railways Kim remembers the importance of train travel.
Kim brings a wealth of clerical and managerial skills to the team, having been a business manager since she was 19.
I must say I never thought I would be campaigning to reopen a rail line, however, as a non-driver I can vouch that the benefit of this line would be huge.

Douglas McLay

Rail Tech

A qualified engineer Douglas spent 14 years working as a Telecoms Engineer for British Rail in the signalling drawing office at Crewe before moving to Scotland and working trackside on major re-signalling and electrification schemes.
After working as a Resident Engineer on the ECML Resignalling Project and as the Project Engineer for the immunisation programme for lines out of Liverpool Street, he moved to BRHQ to manage the development and
introduction of Train to Signalbox radio systems across the network.
He then moved to the defence electronics industry with Marconi, Northern Telecom, Thomson CSF and Raytheon Cossor where he became Divisional Manager. 
He has also spent many years in the Royal Signals TA and as a Regimental Commander.

Rodger Smith

Rodger Smith

Bus Integration

Rodger began work in the municipal bus industry in 1960 at West Bridgford. He has since been Senior Schedules office to Birmingham City,  Traffic Manager and Senior Engineer  in  Northampton Transport and Northants County Council. In 1978 he moved to South Africa to be Traffic Manager with Bophuthatswana Transport and then became Chief Technical Officer of the National Institute for Transport & Road Research in Pretoria.  In 1990 he became an independent consultant working mainly for passenger transport bodies and governments.

Bruce Wakley


Bruce retired from BT/GPO in late 2018 after over 47 years service.  He performed many different roles, latterly as the Lead PSTN Technical Specialist, leading the PSTN compaction programme, nationally. Whilst not a rail expert, he does have system management, data manipulation and analysis experience and firmly believes that hydrogen fuelled rail is the best answer for longer distance travel, with trams for shorter journeys, supplemented by local buses.  He has yet to win the tram argument with Leicester City Council!

Nicola Lees


After 20 years working in local government within community regeneration and economic development, Nicola decided to set up a not-for-profit business centre in Swadlincote, to provide workspaces and a meeting place to help individuals and businesses to learn, develop and grow.

Whilst working for Leicestershire County Council in 2012 Nicola worked closely with transport planning and strategy where she became interested in the fundamentals of good transport infrastructure and services to help grow the local economy. Her interest and passion for creating sustainable transport for individuals to access the wide range of local opportunities whilst reducing our impact on the environment has continued through her support on the Campaign to Reopen the Ivanhoe Line.