Michael Woods was born in 1951. He joined British Rail as a Traffic Management Trainee based at Paignton in 1973 and went on to be Area Terminals Manager at Exeter St. Davids. He then became Assistant Station Manager at Bristol and then went into management roles in Newcastle, Blyth, and Tyne Yard during the early 1980s. In 1985 he was appointed Area Manager at Dartford and then served as Sir Robert Reid (1)’s Personal Assistant in the Chairman’s Office at the British Railways Board. He then worked as a Resources Manager, Planning and Investment Manager and Policy Manager. From 1989 to 1996 he worked as Director Planning and Development for Eurostar UK Limited. He has also been a consultant, lecturer and worked as the Director Technical Services for the Office of Rail Regulation. He has also worked at AEA Technology from 2000 to 2004 and the Railway Safety Standards Board.