Train operator First Great Western has launched a multimillion pound campaign to showcase the professionalism and dedication of their staff as poor weather continues to cause disruption.
Highlighting the impact of recent storms, the campaign offers a human face to show how the transport company is working flat out to maintain services, or offer an alternative for their customers.
The £2.2 million campaign uses individual members of staff to provide an insight into the measures the rail operator is taking to keep customers moving into and out of Devon and Cornwall.
First Great Western Head of Marketing Philip Edgerton explains:
“While people can visibly see train times and connecting journey information, they may not be aware of the work that goes on behind the scenes to maintain the rail service and keep customers up-to-date with journey information.
“The economies of the South West are dependent on travel infrastructure. With journeys interrupted by bus replacement services or extended journey times, this campaign is about the lengths we are going to for our customers, offering them a better understanding of the railway.”
Over 160 buses are being used to transport customers between Exeter and Newton Abbot where the railway line is inoperable. On top of the damaged railway line, one of the company’s major train maintenance depots has also been cut off. Engineering staff volunteered to be sent away from their families to work from other maintenance facilities.
Created by London agency McCann, the six visuals aim to reconnect passengers with the railway and will feature in national news media as well as on billboards and at stations. Two visuals have been released with a further four to follow.
The line between Exeter and Newton Abbot remains closed due to the sea wall collapse at Dawlish and Network Rail has confirmed the line will re-open before Easter. Similarly the line between Taunton and Weston-Super-Mare remains flooded. Hourly services are running between Exeter St Davids and London Paddington and rail services are operating between Plymouth and St Erth – with replacement buses provided for destinations between the two.
First Great Western is offering 25% off all walk-up fares including Any time, Off Peak, Super Off Peak and weekly season tickets for journeys that pass through the affected area until the line reopens.