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Virgin Trains works with local charity to help remove barriers

Press release   •   Jul 03, 2019 09:25 BST

  • Virgin Trains works with The Wishing Well to take a group of young people from Crewe to North Wales
  • Trip designed to help remove barriers to travelling by train for vulnerable young adults
  • Guests experience ‘The Calm Corner’ before jumping onboard

A group of nine young adults and staff from Wishing Well were guests of Virgin Trains on a trip from Crewe to Rhyl last week. The party were on their way to their first ever week long residential course in North Wales.

The group met at The Calm Corner, Virgin Trains’ newly opened quiet area at Crewe designed for people who would benefit from escaping the hustle and bustle of a busy station environment. Next stop Platform 11, and the Virgin Trains’ service to North Wales.

“Travelling by train can be extremely daunting for a lot of my young people,” explained Jan Melia, SEN Service Lead at The Wishing Well. “What most people would consider an everyday task can be a real hurdle for some, which is why trips like this are so important.”

“Virgin Trains didn’t hesitate to support and went above and beyond to ensure our people were really looked after. And the new Calm Corner is a wonderful addition, a real safe haven. Let’s hope it’s the first of many.”

The excited group were looked after by Natalie Beer, Team Leader for Virgin Trains at Crewe who travelled with them as far as Chester.

“It was great to meet everyone and see so many happy and smiling faces,” explained Natalie. “We want our stations and trains to be fully inclusive and were only too pleased to help play our small part in what sounds like a great adventure.”

Wishing Well is a local charity whose aims are to empower and support the community and social participation, whilst encouraging confidence, ambition and personal development of their people.


About Wishing Well

The Wishing Well is a registered charity (1180756) whose mission is to improve the health and wellbeing of local people by providing a wide range of services.

Born out of a community concept to tackle health inequalities, the organisation has grown into a thriving community support system providing a wide range of health related services and activities to local people and is highly valued by our partners within the public, private and voluntary sectors.

Their key aims are to:

  • Empower and support the community and social participation
  • Encourage confidence, ambition and personal development in the community
  • Provide local services and activities to encourage a sense of well-being in the community
  • Tackle inequalities at a local level and influence policies and strategies to deliver lasting outcomes

About Virgin Trains

Stagecoach and Virgin are working in partnership to operate the West Coast inter-city route under the Virgin Trains brand, revolutionising travel on one of the UK’s key rail arteries.

The network connects some of the nation’s most iconic destinations including Glasgow, Liverpool, Birmingham, Manchester and London.

Virgin Trains is committed to delivering a high speed, high frequency service, offering shorter journey times, more comfortable travel and excellent customer service. Customers consistently rate Virgin Trains ahead of other long-distance rail franchise operators in the National Rail Passenger Survey (NRPS) commissioned by industry watchdog, Transport Focus.

Virgin Trains has a proud record of challenging the status quo - from introducing tilting Pendolino trains, to a pioneering automated delay repay scheme, introducing the industry-leading onboard entertainment streaming service, BEAM, and becoming the first franchised rail operator to offer m-Tickets for all ticket types.

Virgin Trains operated the East Coast route between March 1, 2015 and June 24, 2018. In that time, we invested £75m to create a more personalised travel experience, including over £40m in the existing fleet. Customers have benefitted from 48 additional services between Edinburgh and London every week, and an extra 22 Saturday services between Leeds and London – a total of 1.74 million additional seats since May 2015.

Working together, the partnership railway of the public and private sectors has published a long-term plan, called In Partnership for Britain’s Prosperity, to change and improve Britain’s railway. The plan will secure almost £85bn of additional economic benefits to the country whilst enabling further investment and improvement, and contains four commitments which will see rail companies: strengthen our economic contribution to the country; improve customers’ satisfaction; boost the communities we serve; and, create more and better jobs in rail. For more information go to Britain Runs on Rail.

Visit the Virgin Trains Media Room - - for the latest news, images and videos. Subscribe here for regular news from Virgin Trains.

Press Office: 0845 000 3333.

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