Have you seen this train?

Friday 15th May 2015
Local children’s charity Springboard Opportunity Group has teamed up with First Great Western to launch a special colourful train bedecked with children’s paintings and photos. 

With help from First Great Western’s St Phillip’s Marsh Depot the special train will raise spirits and awareness of the charity’s amazing work with children and families across North Somerset. The train (158798), made up of three units, is to carry the children’s artwork, brightening passengers’ journey experience, as it carries passengers and holiday-makers all over the South West during the summer months.

Springboard and First Great Western want to hear about where it’s been spotted using #sogtrain.

The three carriage train travels the route as far as Brighton and Portsmouth, through Bristol and on to Cardiff.

Fleet Manager West at First Great Western John Saville said:

“Committed to the communities we serve, we have been involved with Springboard over the last year and want to continue to support their vital work. By splashing the children’s artwork and photos across one of our trains we are helping to promote their work and the needs of the children and their families.

“We can’t wait to see the response from our passengers and the public, it’s going to create quite a stir and add some colour and interest to the region.”

First Great Western is pleased to support Springboard, a small, but very significant North Somerset charity supporting over 100 children each week who are under five and have additional needs and disabilities. The special train was launched by a number of the children featured on the train and a number of ex-Springboarders, now adults, who are keen rail enthusiasts.

Children at Springboard may have a wide range of disabilities including: autism; cerebral palsy; complex health and medical needs; Down’s syndrome; sensory impairments; language and communication difficulties.

Ann Ramsey, Springboard’s Development Officer and a founding parent said:

“This is a first for us, a truly remarkable day in our long history at Springboard and for the children and families, who will be so excited and proud to see their child’s artwork and photo on a train.

“By promoting Springboard and the needs of disabled children First Great Western are helping to break down the barriers and assumptions. FGW are pulling out all the stops to make it the most memorable experience possible and we can’t thank them enough for this unique opportunity. We want the public who see the train to please keep us informed of where you’ve seen the train and post any photos using our special Twitter hashtag #sogtrain.” 

Springboard offers specialist play sessions at its purpose-built centres in Clevedon and Weston-super-Mare, as well as an inclusion service across North Somerset and family support service and training.

For more information about Springboard and the work it does or about the above events, please contact ann@springboardweb.org.uk; or phone 01275 341113 
07894 273033