Rail service improvements and disruptions

28.07.20

All of Britain’s rail companies to adopt Sunflower lanyard scheme

Network Rail and all of Britain’s train operators have signed up to the Sunflower scheme, which aims to help people with non-visible disabilities to discreetly let others know that they may need more support, time or assistance.

The scheme comes as ‘clinically extremely vulnerable’ people, some of whom may wish to use the Sunflower lanyards and cards, are expected to no longer be asked to shield and so may be considering taking the train.

LNER was the first train company to adopt the scheme in April 2019 and issued more than 10,000 sunflower lanyards during the first 12 months.

Southeastern also piloted it from October last year together with a similar initiative for people with non-visible disabilities, the JAM card.

c2c, ScotRail, TransPennine Express, Avanti West Coast, Hull Trains, Greater Anglia, Transport for Wales Rail and Eurostar all joined the scheme earlier this year. Now, all train operators are working together to recognise the Sunflower and improve train travel for people with non-visible disabilities.

Staff across operators in England, Scotland and Wales are being trained to identify when people choose to wear the lanyard or show a card, with further training around accessibility and inclusion. This scheme comes as part of a wider programme to make the railway more accessible for more people.

8,000 new, more accessible train carriages are set to be delivered by 2025 alongside delivering investment in accessibility improvements at stations.

Staff are also being given additional advice on how to support disabled passengers in the context of the coronavirus pandemic.

Robert Nisbet, Director of Nations and Regions at the Rail Delivery Group, said: “We want the railway to be accessible for everyone. The Sunflower scheme can help people with non-visible disabilities feel more confident asking for assistance, whether that’s to buy a ticket, find their way or get reassurance that the next train is theirs.

“Passengers returning to train travel after lockdown will also benefit from wider staff training to improve disability awareness and the 8,000 new, more accessible train carriages we are introducing by 2025.”

Accessibility Minister Chris Heaton-Harris said: "Our railways must be open to everyone, and the Sunflower lanyard is a brilliant initiative to help passengers with non-visible disabilities travel with confidence across the rail network.

"As restrictions ease, and more and more people gradually return to the railway, it is more important than ever that we consider those around us when we travel by train. That includes passengers with non-visible disabilities who may be exempt from wearing a face covering."

Images: Rail Delivery Group 

Comments

There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment

 

related

rail technology magazine tv

more videos >

latest rail news

HS2 publish annual equality, diversity and inclusion report

07/08/2020HS2 publish annual equality, diversity and inclusion report

Today (8 Aug) HS2 Ltd have released their annual report which details their equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) work... more >
Network Rail’s Southern Region completes installation of secure radio channels

07/08/2020Network Rail’s Southern Region completes installation of secure radio channels

A new digitally secure radio system has been successfully rolled out across Network Rail’s Southern region. A... more >
Network Rail repairs lifeboat ramp during Cumbrian Coast line work

07/08/2020Network Rail repairs lifeboat ramp during Cumbrian Coast line work

Railway engineers have rebuilt a section of public walkway at St. Bees beach which is used to launch lifeboats to rescue... more >

last word

Encouraging youngsters to be safe on the railway

Encouraging youngsters to be safe on the railway

This summer, Arriva Group's CrossCountry and the Scout Association joined to launch a new partnership to promote rail safety among young people. Chris Leech MBE, business community manager at the... more > more last word articles >

'the sleepers' daily blog

On the right track, Sulzer is awarded RISAS accreditation for Nottingham Service Centre

29/06/2020On the right track, Sulzer is awarded RISAS accreditation for Nottingham Service Centre

Following an independent audit, Sulzer’s Nottingham Service Centre has been accepted as part of the rail industry supplier approval scheme (RISAS). The accreditation reinforces the high-quality standards that are maintained by Sulzer’s network of independent repair facilities across the UK and further afield in its global network. ... more >
read more blog posts from 'the sleeper' >

comment

The challenge of completing Crossrail

05/07/2019The challenge of completing Crossrail

With a new plan now in place to deliver Crossrail, Hedley Ayres, National Audit Office manager, major projects and programmes, takes a look at ho... more >
Preparing the industry to deliver trains for the future

04/07/2019Preparing the industry to deliver trains for the future

The move to decarbonise the rail network involves shifting to cleaner modes of traction by 2050. David Clarke, technical director at the Railway ... more >
Sunshine future beckons for South Wales Railways, says 10:10 Climate Action’s Leo Murray

02/07/2019Sunshine future beckons for South Wales Railways, says 10:10 Climate Action’s Leo Murray

Smart electrification is the way to boost clean energy resources, argues Leo Murray, director at 10:10 Climate Action. Contractors are clear... more >
Ambition doesn’t have to be expensive, says Midland Connect's Maria Machancoses

02/07/2019Ambition doesn’t have to be expensive, says Midland Connect's Maria Machancoses

The TCR Midlands conference is only days away and tickets are going fast for the sector event of the year at the Vox Conference Centre in Birming... more >

rail industry focus

View all News

interviews

Andrew Haines, CE of Network Rail, tells BBC News his organisation could issue future rail franchises

24/06/2019Andrew Haines, CE of Network Rail, tells BBC News his organisation could issue future rail franchises

Andrew Haines, the Chief Executive of Network Rail, has told the Today programme on Radio 4's BBC’s flagship news programme that he wo... more >