The Challenge

Key players in the East Midlands rail industry were looking for an innovative way to attract bright new talent and engage school aged children towards STEM related subjects with a view to a career on the railway.

Our Approach

By Design developed the concept of Innovative Rail ‘iRail’ and have designed, managed and delivered a high profile STEM showcase event and outreach programme bringing regional schools together at an annual event.

The platform both showcases the rail industry and also demonstrates the science and engineering career opportunities available in this growing area. The day provides the Rail industry with the opportunity to not only promote their activity but also network with other key players and interact with young people. Students are also given an engineering challenge to be judged by a panel of experts.

The Result

Since 2009 iRail has attracted hundreds of school students from Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and Birmingham with competing solutions to a railway engineering problem. Now organised as part of The Big Bang, the event is now a highlight of the rail industry calendar, providing genuine opportunities for young people and a firmly established brand in the region.

A STEM outreach programme designed to enthuse young people in future rail careers

iRail Event 2020

5th March 2020 - Derby Conference Centre

We were thrilled to have our iRail 2020 to take place at Derby Conference centre this year for allocated schools to participate in the brand NEW iRail challenge.


Throughout the day students were mentored by industry experts whilst taking part in exciting workshops and hearing from rail industry experts. Part of the day invited students to solve the iRail STEM Challenge and present their solutions to a ‘Dragon’s Den’ style panel of judges.


This core element of the day challenged students thinking, encouraged team work and collaboration, as well as using enterprise skills as to explore rail industry problems both momentary and environmental.


Take a look at some of the highlights from our iRail 2020 event

iRail Workshops

Inspire, engage and motivate your learners in the world of Rail by taking part in an iRail workshop. iRail workshops are primarily delivered in schools across the Birmingham area. 

iRail Ambassador Opportunities

Are you available to enhance the learning experiences of young people, by supporting one or more of the iRail workshops? If so, please get in touch!

Inspire young people to consider a career in the rail industry

Contact Us

Interested in taking part in iRail? Looking for more information? Get in touch!

Call: 01827 316 297