52nd Watford Conference

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

On behalf of The Watford Group, we are glad to invite you to the 52nd Watford Conference, which will be held in Madrid, Spain from 20th to 22nd October 2017.

This year’s conference takes place following and in close connection with UIC’s 6th Next Station Conference, also held in Madrid from 18th to 20th October. The Watford Group and UIC saw a specific interest in bringing the two events together at the same time in the same place, thus underlining the close connection between station design and station operations and management.

Even though both events are independently organized, attendants to the Watford Conference will have specific access conditions to the Next Station event, as detailed at the end of this invitation.



Friday 20th October:

14:00 Inscription at Hotel WeAre
15:30 Conference start. Introduction and theme presentations 1
16:45 Coffee Break
17:00 Theme Presentations 2
18:15 Break
18:30 Theme Presentations 3
19:30 End of Presentations
20:30 Candlestick dinner

Saturday 21th October:

07:00 Departure from hotel WeAre Chamartin
07:45 Departure of HS train (AVE) to Cuenca in Madrid-Puerta de Atocha
08:40 Arrival at Cuenca
08:45 Visit to Cuenca Fernándo Zóbel station
09:36 AVE departure to Valencia J.S
10:29 Arrival at Valencia J.S.
10:30 Visit to Valencia Joaquín Sorolla station
11:30 Visit to Valencia Nord station. 100th anniversary
13:00 Lunch
14:30 Visit to Valencia historical centre
17:10 AVE departure to Madrid from Valencia J.S
18:51 Arrival at Madrid Puerta de Atocha station
19:00 Visit to Madrid Puerta de Atocha station
20:30 Dinner

Sunday 22nd October:

08.30 Meeting at hotel lobby
08:45 Departure to FFE (Spanish Railway Foundation)
09:30 General Assembly
10:30 Free presentations 1
11:30 Coffee break
11:45 Free presentations 2
13:00 Lunch
14:00 Free presentations 3
15:30 Discussion
16:00 Conclusions
16:30 End of 52nd Watford Conference

Additional program (not included in the core conference fee)

18:00 Architectural tour in Madrid centre. Madrid contemporary architecture 1960-2010 (landmarks and hidden gems)
20:30 Farewell dinner in a traditional restaurant



The 52th Conference theme is ‘Learning from the Past and Looking Forward: Stations in the Information Age’.

  • Stations are facing radical transformation adapting to modern pressures. They are not just gateways to trains and communities but also stepping stones in longer journeys and the passenger demands on them are continually changing.
  • In an age of 'feedback', digital operations and mobile communications how do we use the lessons of past projects to meet the future needs of passengers and train operators?
    Attendees who wish to make a presentation are kindly requested to indicate it in the questionnaire in the application form.

Presentations can be given either in the theme category or the free category. Time for presentations is scarce on this edition of the conference, so participants can make only one presentation.

A short description of the presentation must be sent by October 6th. Presentation blocks will be organized in sections of related interest as far as possible.

Every presentation must be 15 min maximum. Time for discussion will be limited to 10-15 minutes at the end of each block.

Watford Conference 2017 inscription
  • Application form will be found here>>

          Watford Conference attendees are requested to register by September 15th. EXTENDED UNTIL 9th OCTOBER

Watford Conference and Next Station 2017

The 6th Next Station conference will be held from October 18th to 20th in the Eurostars Madrid Hotel, organised by Adif (Spanish Rail Infrastructure Manager) and UIC. Next Station and Watford Conference venues are only 500m away, so a close continuity between them is feasible. More information can be found at www.nextstation2017.com

Both events have different organizers. Therefore, attendees to both should register separately on the respective websites.

This invitation refers only to the conditions to participate at the Watford Conference although indications about Next Station registration are given due to the reasons exposed below

Special Next Station 2017 registration for Watford Conference participants

Being aware of the interest that both events can draw in railway and design professionals, Next Station Organizing Comitte offers a special inscription fee of 300€ for Watford Conference attendants. This fee does not include accommodation for the 18th and 19th October.

Professionals registered at the Watford Conference and not yet registered at Next Station must sign in as ‘speakers’ in the Next Station application form and indicate in the company name box the name Watford, hyphenated with their company name, in case they came on behalf of one. (Example: DB-Watford, NetworkRail-Watford, etc.). Private attendants must sign in just ‘Watford’. Only those already registered at the Watford Conference can benefit from the special Next Station conditions offered.

Please be also aware that technical visits programmed by Next Station on Saturday 21st occur simultaneously with the Watford Conference excursion to Valencia, Cuenca and Madrid-Atocha station. Those who want to enjoy the whole Watford Conference program should not reserve the Next Station technical visits.



Ground Transportation Training Center
Spanish Railways Foundation
Santa Isabel, 44 – E28012 Madrid
Tel: (+34) 91 151 10 94 / 59 / 50