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Corporate and social responsibility

We’re passionate about putting our stations and services at the heart of the communities they serve. Here are some of the ways we do it

Transforming lives and communities

Everything we do as a railway is about connecting people, and providing the pathways that improve their lives. But we want to be at the heart of the communities we serve in more ways than one.

As a business we have real power to make a huge impact in transforming lives and communities. We know many of our people and customers are incredibly passionate about their local communities and how they can make them a better place to live and work.

We will focus on making a real difference in three important areas of society: Young people, Homelessness and Mental Health & Healthcare. We will do this by continuing to build close relationships with community groups and charity organisations, providing support and opportunities to address these issues.


Give us your (new!) socks

Homeless shelters are calling out for new warm socks to give to those in need

This Christmas period six regional homeless charities are partnering with Gatwick Express to provide support for local people experiencing homelessness.

We’re encouraging our passengers and teams to donate a new pair of socks for those sleeping rough over the festive period.

Why socks?

Often overlooked as an unimportant item, for those sleeping rough, a pair of socks is essential for keeping feet warm and dry. Without them, there is great risk of blisters, fungal infections and even trench foot. This basic item of clothing is also responsible for keeping feet healthy, maintaining good circulation and managing diabetes. With temperatures plummeting on UK streets this winter it takes just 30 minutes for frostbite to take hold, meaning socks are crucial for surviving.

How can I can get involved?

We will be holding collections at the below stations on 5 December between 7am – 10am:

  • Bedford
  • Brighton
  • East Croydon
  • London Blackfriars
  • Luton
  • Royston
  • Stevenage
  • St Albans

We are working in partnership with:

 

 


 

Charities

One of the ways we support our communities is by making donations and supporting local charities. We ask our teams to nominate and vote for our corporate charities local to our network.

Currently we are voting for three new charities across our network, one for each of the three areas that we are supporting as a business: Mental Health, Young People and Homelessness. Come back again soon to find out more.

In the past we have worked with East Anglian Air Ambulance, Chestnut Tree House, Keech Hospice and Embrace

Fundraising

We support our teams in their own fundraising efforts for causes they are passionate about. Taking part in major marathons, cycle rides, charity football matches, bake-offs and skydives are just some of the ways we’ve raised money. We may also be able to provide raffle prizes for local fundraising, please contact community@gtrailway.com.

Fundraising on our stations

If you’re interested in fundraising at our stations, we are very happy to take enquiries, please send requests to businessdevelopment@gtrailway.com.

Young people

We want to make sure youngsters stay safe when they travel with us.

That’s why we’ve worked with Sussex Community Rail Partnership (SCRP) to develop the Go-Learn project.

Go-Learn focuses on staying safe on the railway. It includes school sessions on travel planning and personal safety, as well as station visits.

Between April 2018 - March 2019 over 8,000 children benefited from a session with us.

To book a school session email madeleine@sussexcrp.org.

Sussex Community Rail Partnership

Sussex Community Rail Partnership (SCRP) is a not-for-profit partnership that works to promote rail travel along some of our lines. They work with transport operators and local communities to:

  • support community projects, including those that give people a sense of pride in their stations
  • encourage rural tourism
  • working with schools and local councils to give young people the skills to travel safely and independently by train
  • working with community groups to help remove barriers to travel
  • encourage healthy, sustainable and accessible travel

They also hold events and produce award-winning guides to train lines and local attractions.

SCRP covers six lines, including the Arun Valley (running from Gatwick Airport to Bognor Regis, Chichester), Brighton to Seaford, Marshlink (Ashford to Hastings), Tonbridge to Reigate, Oxted to East Grinstead and Uckfield, and West Coastway (Hove to Littlehampton).

To learn more visit the SCRP website.

Station Partnerships

A station partnership is a group of volunteers who come together to work with us on improving how one of our stations serves its local area. It’s an ongoing partnership that benefits everyone involved and creates links with local communities.

There’s a great variety of projects, but all are designed to benefit the community, the station and our passengers.

Examples include:

  • Improving the look of a station through a garden
  • Adding community artwork to brighten up areas of the buildings
  • Introducing a book swap

Learn more – download our station partnerships leaflet

Sustainability

To keep the communities we serve up-to-date with our progress, we publish a sustainability report every year. Our reports cover a variety of topics such as society, customers, our people and finance.

Highlights from the report include:

  • Operated a more reliable andpunctual service than at any time in recent history, recording 94.5% PPM between April and July
  • 57% increase in life saving interventions on the GTR network
  • Satisfaction with trains increased by 22% on Great Northern year on year
  • Delivered Caring for the Vulnerable – suicide prevention training to over 900 colleagues
  • Created the largest single charging point in rail in the UK
  • Contacted over 600 schools to raise awareness of danger of trespassing on the railway in lockdown
  • Our engineering team are delivering a £55m train modernisation programme on 270 trains that will last five years
  • Over 4,000 pairs of socks donated to homeless partners
  • Donated 107 bikes to NHS workers in spring and summer
  • Over 8,000 children educated in railway safety
  • First train company to sign the Rough Sleeping on Rail Charter
  • Wrapped three trains with a message of thanks for NHS workers

Download the full 2020 Sustainability report

Sustainability at our parent company

Our parent company – Go-Ahead Group – also publishes an annual sustainability report. To read more about their approach to corporate responsibility, visit their performance and reports page.