Rail buff is new transport chair

Peter Kennan
Peter Kennan
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A rail buff and chartered accountant has been announced as the new chairman of Sheffield Chamber of Commerce Transport Forum.

Peter Kennan, a partner at Hawsons Chartered Accountants, takes the role this month from Tim Hale, chair of Champion Hire Ltd.

The forum meets regularly to discuss and lobby for improvements in transport matters from local road schemes to national infrastructure developments.

It acts as a sounding board for the private sector on transport issues within Sheffield and across the city region.

Peter studied economics and economic history at Durham University, graduating in 1980 and going on to join a top-10 firm of chartered accountants.

Peter, aged 56, who lives in Chesterfield with his family, said: “I have a strong, lifelong passion for railways - steam, diesel or electric – but am looking forward to getting involved in all of the key sectors from roads to airports and everything in between.

“I am taking on this role at a pivotal time for transport in the city business region – the devolution deal for Sheffield promises a shifting of powers over transport from Whitehall to the city, there is HS2 and HS3 on the horizon, as well as rail electrification plans for the North and consultation proposals for the Northern and TransPennine Express franchises.

“The issue of transport will also play an important part if we are to turn the Northern Powerhouse concept into a reality.”

Sheffield Chamber executive director Richard Wright said: “Peter brings a personal and professional interest in and commitment to transport in the city business region. He will be a persuasive figurehead.”