NEWS.CATEGORY: Newsletters

GWR: Election of TSSA member to Pensions Committee

TSSA invites members, who are active/contributing members of the First Great Western section of the Railways Pension Scheme (RPS) to nominate themselves for the position of member appointee for the TSSA seat of the FGW Pensions Committee. This is due to our current representative Darran Hickery planning to leave GWR on 21 June 2024 just short of the current 3-year term of office expiring. I’d like to thank Darran for all his efforts on behalf of members not just in this seat but also representing Engineering Management and other TSSA members both collectively and individually over his time as a TSSA Representative.
This appointment will be for at least the remainder of Darran’s 3-year term and will involve attendance at the First Great Western RPS Section Committee meetings which usually take place four times per annum. At these meetings, decisions are taken on investments, applications for certain pension benefits and overall management and administration of the scheme that is in the best interests of RPS members and the pension scheme. The successful candidate will be expected to comply with TSSA rules and liaise on a regular basis with Alan Valentine Full Time Official with responsibility for TSSA members within Great Western Railways. Lower down is a role description which provides more information on key responsibilities, but more information can be obtained by emailing Alan Valentine click here 

Knowledge of the Railways Pension scheme is desirable, however the Pension Administrators and TSSA offer a comprehensive programme of Training in which you will be entitled to paid release from duties.
If you wish to stand for this position, please complete a nomination form via the online link below, please sign and date it to confirm you will comply with TSSA rules and policies, keeping in regular contact and get 6 TSSA members who are currently making contributions to the FGW section of the pensions scheme to nominate you. Once complete please then scan the nomination form and email it to Alan Valentine, TSSA Organiser via email at no later than Tuesday 4th June 2024.

You will need to write seeking nomination for the position, and this will need to be supported by at least 6 signatures from fellow TSSA members actively contributing to the First Great Western section of the RPS. Nominees will also need to sign to say they will comply with TSSA rules and keep in regular contact with the relevant TSSA full time officer.
A copy of the nomination form can be accessed online here:

If we receive more than one valid nominee by the deadline, there will be a vote of TSSA members to decide who will take up this important role, if so, we will write out to you in due course. It is important to note that only TSSA members will be able to participate in any vote so please encourage your colleagues to join us at

Members would also be advised to ensure that their membership records are up to date at in advance of any election but particularly to add a contact email to their membership if they received this circular via post.

The role of a Pensions Committee Member appointee

The role of a Pensions Committee member is a responsible one which has a specified range of duties and responsibilities as set out in the terms of the Pensions Trust and Section rules and the Committee specifically has been given responsibility to decide on investment policy.
For all intents and purposes, Pensions Committee members are considered local trustees and accordingly have the responsibilities of a trustee. Training is provided in accordance with the provisions of the Pensions Act 1995 and Trustee Knowledge and Understanding (TKU) regulations. The main duties and powers of a Pension Scheme Trustee are:

  • To act in accordance with the Trust Deed and Rules of the Scheme, within the framework of the law.
  • To act prudently, conscientiously and honestly with the utmost of good faith.
  • To act in the best interests of all beneficiaries and strike a fair balance between the interests of different classes of beneficiary.
  • To take advice on technical matters and any other matters which the trustee does not understand.

This is a non-remunerative post (expenses incurred to attend meetings are reimbursed) but, as a Pensions Committee member you will have the opportunity to build up new areas of expertise, undergo training, gain recognised status and visibility and your involvement will provide a worthwhile service to your fellow Scheme members in helping to run and grow the Scheme.
In general, there will be 4 meetings of the Committee each year, held in Reading. An Agenda and supporting papers will be sent to you in advance of each meeting. Special meetings may be called in the interim periods from time to time when Committee business requires urgent consideration.