Northern is hiring hundreds of new train drivers and conductors with ‘no previous experience’ needed

Fancy it? Applications are now open.

Emily Sergeant Emily Sergeant - 19th March 2024

Northern has just launched another massive recruitment drive, and is looking to hire hundreds of new train drivers and conductors.

The best bit? You don’t even need any previous rail experience to apply.

The train operator says it is looking to recruit as many as 300 drivers and conductors across right the north of England this year – with the new recruits all set to form part of the team that is responsible for running the over 2,500 services Northern provides to more that 500 stations throughout the region each day.

Northern says both its driver and conductor roles “require no previous rail industry experience”, as full paid-for training will be provided at its academies in Manchester and Leeds.

The company wants to welcome 108 new train drivers and 198 conductors in 2024.

Northern is hiring hundreds of new train drivers and conductors across the region / Credit: Northern

The train driver roles – which will be advertised in the coming months in Manchester, as well as other nearby locations like Blackburn, Blackpool, Leeds, Liverpool, Sheffield, and more – come with a starting salary of £23,000 a year, which eventually rises to £54,500 after completing a 64-week training course. 

The conductor roles, on the other hand – many of which will also be advertised in Manchester too – come with starting salaries of £22,000 that rise to £29,000 on completion of 16-weeks of training.


Northern says its 2024 recruitment drive is part of a “normal and ongoing recruitment process” across the region, and comes as a handful of its other team members retire, earn promotion, or move on to the next stage of their career.

No previous rail experience is required for the roles / Credit: Northern

“We have a range of rewarding roles for anyone who wants to become part of a dedicated team,” commented Tricia Williams, who is the Chief Operating Officer at Northern, as the recruitment drive launched this week.

“We are looking for customer-focused people with excellent communication skills, who thrive in a dynamic environment and may not have considered a career in rail before. We want our workforce to reflect the communities we serve, and we’re proud to include people from all walks of life in our team, from military veterans and ex-police officers, to former office workers, and stay-at-home parents.”


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Ms Williams said the rail operator will be recruiting all throughout 2024, and is encouraging hopeful candidates to register for job alerts on the Northern website so they don’t miss out.

You can find out more information and apply for roles here.

Featured Image – Northern