Inner city school children discover Suffolk by rail

Thursday, 25 September 2014

A group of schoolchildren from inner city London made their way to Ipswich by rail this week for their annual residential trip to the Suffolk countryside.

The year 6 pupils from The Hague Primary School, Bethnal Green, travelled from Abellio Greater Anglia’s Bethnal Green rail station to Ipswich on Tuesday 23rd September to enjoy four days exploring the coast, forests and heaths of the county with activities such as bird-watching, night walks, pond dipping and visiting the Suffolk Punch Trust, RSPB Minsmere and Sutton Hoo.

The trip was provided by The Country Trust, a charity which organises residential trips to the countryside for children from deprived areas of London, Leeds and Bradford to show them the countryside in all its wonderful diversity, from working farms to beaches, castles to forests, wildlife reserves to rivers.  The children have experiences they have never had before, such as seeing the night sky in all its glory, or hearing a nightingale sing.

Rail travel was provided by Abellio Greater Anglia, continuing a tradition of train operator support which has spanned over ten years.

Hague Primary School Support Manager, Tracy Webster, commented, “We are so grateful for Abellio Greater Anglia’s support for our school trip. It is a valuable experience for our inner city children to visit Suffolk’s beautiful countryside and they always say it is one of their most memorable experiences of their last year at Hague School. We are very grateful that the help of Abellio Greater Anglia and the Country Trust means that these children can get in touch with the natural environment and enjoy new experiences.”

Keely Pagdin, Abellio Greater Anglia’s Head of Customer Service – West, said, “It can be difficult for inner city families in deprived areas to afford the costs of transport associated with school trips so we were happy to support the school’s request for help and speed them by rail to the heart of Suffolk for their exciting adventure.”