Gleeson Group is planning a “vigorous attack” on the rail market after buying specialist rail contractor Mabey last week for £6.26m.

Chairman Dermot Gleeson said that, despite the construction industry’s disappointment at Railtrack’s spending record over the past three years, he anticipated considerable investment over the next decade.

He described Mabey, which has a turnover of £22m, as an “almost perfect strategic fit” with Gleeson’s existing business.

Mabey employs 100 staff, and works predominantly for Railtrack and London Underground. It recently secured two three-year maintenance contracts for London Underground, with an expected value of more than £25m.

Mabey will keep its own, separate identity, but will join Gleeson’s engineering division. Gleeson added that Mabey would also collaborate on some projects with the group’s concrete repair arm and its M&E subsidiary Powerminster.