Sussex CRP and Southern Rail Accessibility team arranged a trip to Littlehampton for ten students from Chichester College Skills for Independence course, along with three of their support staff.
The trip had been carefully organised by Arun Valley Line Officer, Rowena Tyler with input from the college, and the two station managers, Howard Clear based at Chichester and Steve So, based at Littlehampton.
The station managers welcomed the group, answered questions about their jobs and gave talks on safety around stations and on the trains. Along with Rowena, they accompanied the group to Littlehampton, where everyone enjoyed lunch at the Look and Sea Centre, a walk around the bay to see the boats and a quick peep inside the Lifeboat station museum.
One of the group uses an electric wheelchair, so ramps and lift access had to be considered and at both stations, staff were happy to give assistance and answer questions. At Littlehampton, Sean Morris, a Southern staff member with experience in signalling using flags, gave a demonstration.
At the end of the Try the Train Trip, the students were asked if the train trip had helped to increase their confidence, and they all agreed it had – and they are looking forward to using their new-found knowledge in the near future.
“Try the Train Events” provide an ideal opportunity for those who lack confidence travelling by train to visit our stations and to experience a train journey to an enjoyable location.
The events are aimed at those who have any form of disability and are not confident train travellers….. or those who simply wish to build their confidence when travelling!