Skip to main content

Dathlu menywod STEM TrC - Peiriannydd Cymorth Fflyd, Chloe Thomas

09 Feb 2024

As we celebrate this year’s International Day of Women and Girls in Science, we hear from Fleet Support Engineer Chloe Thomas on her role at TfW.

Chloe Thomas

Chloe was awarded Rail Engineer of the Year at the RailStaff Awards in 2022. As the first woman apprentice at TfWs Canton depot in Cardiff, Chloe’s advice to any other women looking for a career in engineering is to break the stereotype and not let your gender hold you back from the career you desire. Chloe says:

When I was in full time education, I wasn’t really sure what my career path would be. I knew I was good at science and maths so something where I could utilise my skills was what I wanted to do.

I was in full time education prior to joining TfW, as well as having 2 part-time jobs. I had completed my A-levels but decided I didn’t want to go to university, so I chose to do a course in Aerospace Engineering. I thoroughly enjoyed the engineering side of things but I didn’t love the aerospace side. Again, university was a potential option, but I really enjoyed the hands-on side of things so looked at other avenues.

The perfect fit

An apprenticeship wasn’t something I’d ever considered but when I saw the advert and job description in the newspaper for an apprenticeship on the railway, it seemed like the perfect fit. I submitted my application and in 2015 I joined TfW as a fleet maintenance apprentice.

After completing my apprenticeship, I secured a role as a full-time maintenance technician, and I’ve now progressed to become a Fleet Support Engineer.

When I joined as an apprentice, I was the first and only woman on the shop floor at TFWs depot in Canton. Excitingly, we now have more women who have joined as technicians, a team leader and an apprentice. It’s fantastic to see more women working on the railway.

Taking on challenges and finding creative solutions

My day-to-day role is extremely varied. I have some core responsibilities, which include answering technical queries and managing our maintenance management system, but there are also daily tasks and challenges that come my way as well as issues and investigations that must be carried out.

My work is carried out on a priority basis - so if there’s a safety incident, that will be my focus for the day. An example of one of my current projects is writing a new electrical safety procedure as our new trains harness some very powerful voltages/currents.

I really enjoy the variety in my role. I enjoy taking on challenges and finding the creative solutions which often have to go through trials or engineering approvals.

A positive impact on my ambitions

Working in a male dominated industry has had a positive impact on my ambitions, as I believe it has made me work harder and strive higher.

I would also encourage anyone to go for an apprenticeship. I thought I had to go to university, but in fact, during my apprenticeship I gained qualifications up to HNC level in Electrical and Electronic Engineering, an NVQ, and have since completed my BSc in Electrical and Electronic Engineering with the support of TfW.


For more blogs, please visit

For more information about the job opportunities available at TfW, visit