Train of Events

Key Themes

  • Strategic v HSEQ priorities
  • Partnerships/joint ventures
  • Challenge and intervention at executive level
  • Process safety
  • Leadership

Target Audience

Senior Management and Board Members.


A horrific train derailment is caused by a problem in the tilting mechanism. The Engineering Director of the train company has more reason than most to regret the failure – his wife and only child were amongst the dead. The political, social and commercial pressures to deliver are explored in this provocative play which looks at Board level deliberations and compromises which can impact on safety.


Stephen: We had a discussion about the Chinese project. You threw into the conversation that the route would have to be changed.

Eric: And you said you wouldn’t sign off any change until all the risks were assessed and managed.

Stephen: Quite. And then I did nothing.

Eric: This is a ten-year project! You didn’t need to do anything.

Stephen: Yesterday I realised for the first time that not only would working in partnership on a venture like this be a series of trade-offs and compromises, it would mean I had to do more than make speeches.

Eric: You do much more than that. You drive the strategy.

Stephen: Which sounds very active. But it’s corporate bullshit. I spent a long time last night deciding what action I ought to take, what I should do to reconnect the words with the actions. And I came to the conclusion that I can’t do it alone. I need to believe that everyone I work with closely shares the same values and behaviours.

Eric: I think we all do.

Stephen: No Eric, I don’t believe we do.