Scottish Rail Holdings appoint new Board members

The Minister for Transport has announced the appointment two Non-Executive Directors to the Board of Scottish Rail Holdings

Interim Chair

Richard Cairns has accepted an offer for the post of Interim Chair for a period of 15 months from 1 April. He will replace Gareth Llewellyn, whose one-year appointment ended on 31 March 2023.

Richard has over 30 years’ experience in the field of economic development and has worked in both the public and private sectors in Scotland, across the UK and EU, and in Australia. His most recent post was Strategic Advisor to the Scottish Government and Glasgow City Region for Clyde Mission, seeking to maximise the economic, environmental, and social regeneration potential of the river.

Richard is also a Board member of Hub West Scotland, the public infrastructure delivery company, and a Visiting Professor at the School of Public Policy, University of Strathclyde.

He was previously the Strategic Director of Regeneration, Environment & Growth at West Dunbartonshire Council (WDC). Prior to joining WDC, Richard was Head of Economic Development at Mazars, Head of Economic Development for the Audit Commission in London, Chief Executive of Glasgow Chamber of Commerce and Head of Economic Development for Glasgow City Council, where he had responsibility for business growth, employment, inward investment, and tourism.

Richard has an extensive background in Board governance, economic development, and the delivery of public services for communities, businesses, and people. This includes current Board membership of the UK Institute for Economic Development; Chairperson of the Clydebank Property Company; and Board membership of Glasgow Film Theatre.

Interim Non-Executive Director

 Carolyn Griffiths has accepted an appointment as Interim NED for a period of

18 months commencing 1 April. She will also chair ScotRail’s Safety, Health, and Environmental Committee.

Carolyn has worked in the rail industry since 1979, with extensive experience in the UK and overseas in rail operations and establishing new rail organisations. Among other appointments she was the founding Chief Inspector of the Rail Accident and Investigation Branch, Senior Vice President of Adtranz and Non-Executive Director of the Board of Irish Rail where she was also a member of a number of the Board advisory committees.

Carolyn has professional experience of working as a Board member, non-Executive. and Trustee, with extensive experience of working across the various sectors within the rail industry and being accountable for passenger and public opinion/satisfaction. She has worked at a senior level as both an executive and engineer. She is a Fellow and Board member of the Royal Academy of Engineering.

Last August, Carolyn was appointed, with the then Minister’s approval, to Chair the Carmont Vehicle Recommendation Steering Group following the RAIB Carmont accident investigation report. This is a multi-stakeholder group whose work is identifying the response to those recommendations which best serve for Scotland’s railway, its customers, and staff.

Interim Non-Executive Director 

Existing NED People Roz Foyer has accepted an extension to her appointment for a further 15 months.

Other Ministerial Appointments

The Postholders do not hold any other ministerial appointments.

Political Activity

All appointments are made on merit and political activity plays no part in the selection process. However, in accordance with the original Nolan recommendations, there is a requirement for appointees’ political activity within the last five years (if there is any to be declared) to be made public. No appointees have had any political activity in the last five years.


These appointments are part-time and attract the following remuneration:

  • Interim Chair - 48 days £498 per day
  • Interim NED Safety, a minimum of 27 days, £360 per day

The next Board meeting is expected to take place on Thursday 27 April.

Minister for Transport Kevin Stewart said:

"I am pleased to welcome Richard Cairns as the next Non-Executive Chair and Carolyn Griffiths as Non-Executive Director to the Board of Scottish Rail Holdings. The appointment of a Chair and Director with such demonstrably impressive experience reflects our ambition for a publicly owned ScotRail.

“Richard and Carolyn have both had successful careers in their respective fields sector and I look forward to them bringing their individual experience and expertise to their roles.

“I would like to thank Roz Foyer for her ongoing commitment and acceptance of an extended appointment.

“In addition, I would also like take the opportunity to thank all our outgoing Board members for their hard-work and contribution, and I wish them well in their future endeavours.”


Published 26 Apr 2023 Tags