Train stations up and down the country have the potential to become huge parts of the community providing easy transport links for all.
This can also play a role in allowing the UK to achieve its net-zero targets to limit the effects of climate change.
With this in mind it is essential that the rail industry does all it can to improve the passenger experience from purchasing a ticket to arriving at their destination.
During the TCR Midlands event rail industry leaders met to discuss the ways in which passengers’ experience can be the best it possibly can be.
Nick Brown, Chairman at Urban Growth Company and Network Rail System Operator Board spoke on how the passenger’s experience can be brought into the 21st century.
Mr Brown said: “[There are] hugely impressive things that can be done very easily at stations.
“There’s a huge amount that can be done that does not require primary legislation... there’s an awful lot we can do to use our stations more effectively.
“Look at how quickly our colleagues in the airline industry have changed their model as far as processing passengers through airports and yet we still have ticket barriers.
“I think the challenge to us all is that we’ve got to… get innovation into the ground and into the hands of our passengers.”
With huge international events like the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham on the horizon there is pressure to improve the passenger experience quickly.
The upcoming Games will provide a launchpad to improve the passenger experience with a huge influx of people expected to use rail to attend the Games.
Malcolm Holmes, Executive Director, WMRE and Director of Rail, TfWM spoke on the opportunities presented by the Games.
Mr Holmes said: “This has pushed technological advancement and has pushed us in delivering products as well.
“Perry Barr station will be delivered and ready to welcome people to the Games come July and it’s a fabulous project.”
Overall, it is clear that improving the experience of rail for passengers is at the forefront of everyone’s mind in the rail industry.
Key events like the upcoming Commonwealth Games provide those in the industry to use technology and innovation to improve passenger experience across the network.