An innovative film designed to improve customer service and support for passengers has been unveiled today by the Cambrian Railways Partnership at the Senedd in Cardiff Bay.
‘A Helping Hand’ is a 15 minute film produced by the Partnership aimed at enhancing the travelling experience of customers who may have difficulties communicating with staff during their journey. Featuring students from Coleg Ceredigion Aberystwyth and Derwen College Gobowen, the film won the ‘Passengers Matter’ category at the 2015 Association for Community Rail Partnerships (ACORP) Awards in Torquay. The film is available free to view on YouTube and is available bilingually.
Rhydian Mason, Rail Development Officer for the Partnership said; “The film was produced as we knew that there was no real resource to explain the assistance available to those who might need it. It offers practical advice on how to plan a journey, where to find timetable information, advice on Railcards and who to approach for help if required. ”
The production team worked closely with the students from the Vocational Access course at Coleg Ceredigion and Derwen College – one of the UK’s leading residential colleges for students with learning difficulties, to create a film that shows real-life case studies of people making travel plans and taking a journey from Mid Wales to London. It is the second information film produced by the Partnership following the successful production of First Class Safety – a film aimed at keeping young people safe on the railway.
The film features the Orange Wallet Scheme – a simple, low cost idea that helps break down barriers for people who may find it difficult to communicate. The scheme is funded by the Welsh Government and co-ordinated via www.asdinfowales.co.uk .
Phil Caldwell, Schools Liaison Officer for Arriva Trains Wales said; “It’s a highly innovative film which provides answers to questions often raised by people who may not have the confidence to travel by train and are consequently deterred from doing so. We’ve been able to demonstrate how accessible train travel can be and hope it will encourage many more people to travel by train in the future.”
Lord Dafydd Elis-Thomas, who sponsored the event at the Senedd said: “This project is an excellent example of how innovative a community rail partnership can be. Working with Arriva Trains Wales, the Cambrian Railways Partnership has managed to produce a unique and worthwhile piece of work that will benefit passengers across the whole of the UK who feel that there are barriers to their own ability to travel by train.
“The Orange Wallet scheme, featured in the information film, is something which we should all support and promote and I hope that today’s launch at the Senedd will assist the Welsh Government to further back the scheme so that we can make travelling by rail something which is accessible to all.”
The ‘Orange Wallet’ is one of a range of collaborative regional projects funded by the Welsh Government as part of the ‘All Wales ASD strategy’. It is intended to help people, especially those on the Autistic Spectrum, to cope more easily with public transport. The wallet can be obtained by calling Arriva Trains Wales’ customer service team on 03333 211 202 or email firstname.lastname@example.org . Further information can be obtained from the Arriva Trains Wales website at http://www.arrivatrainswales.co.uk/OrangeWalletScheme/