John K. Welsby C.B.E. was born in 1941. He became a Senior Economic Advisor in the Department for Transport and undertook a secondment to the British Railways Board. He served as the Director Provincial Services from 1982 to 1986 and then became the Director Restructuring for British Rail Engineering Limited until 1989. He was appointed as Board Member for the Channel Tunnel Rail Link in 1989. He served as Chief Executive Designate for the British Railways Board from 1989, until his appointment as the Chief Executive of the British Railways Board in 1990. He went on to be the Chairman of the British Railways Board until 1999.