Greater Anglia chooses the hare as icon for a new era of rail travel in East Anglia

Published on: Friday, 5 April 2019
Last updated: Friday, 5 April 2019

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Over the next two years the introduction of our brand new fleet of trains is set to transform rail travel in East Anglia.

We’re investing £1.4 billion in replacing every single train, increasing capacity by up to 40% and providing a much improved on board experience.

We think our new trains - and the benefits they offer - will become iconic to the region, and as a result, we’ve taken a look at our brand and marketing activity to ensure it reflects and celebrates this new era.

Working with creative agency, Atomic, and animation specialists, Nexus, we’ve created a new brand icon – a stylised hare – who you’ll see hopping around our region’s best-loved destinations in our TV, digital and print advertising.

The brown hare, with its characteristic long, black tipped ears, is a very familiar sight in East Anglia, often seen swiftly leaping over ploughed fields on its long hind legs. Indeed, the region is one of the hare’s last strongholds as its UK population has been declining since the 1960s.

Atomic’s Creative Partner, Guy Bradbury, said, of the process of finding a new brand icon: “What’s great about the hare is that it’s magical, it’s a symbol of speed, it’s a symbol of freedom – which is great for a rail network – and it’s also the UK’s fastest land animal, which is great because the new trains are going to go a lot faster.”

David Metherell, Greater Anglia’s Head of Commercial Development, said, “I knew immediately when Atomic presented the hare to us that we had the brief. It was of the region, represented the speed of the new trains, and also the modernity of the new trains as well, so the new train is design is reflected in the hare’s design.”

You can meet our new hare, and find out more about how it was created, in the video below:

As well as the huge benefits for passengers, our new trains will be helping to protect the habitat of the hare and other wildlife, thanks to their environmentally friendly features which help to reduce pollution.

As well as taking thousands of cars off the roads, the replacements for our current diesel trains have newer, more efficient engines and feature ‘bi-mode operation’ which means they can take advantage of running on electricity wherever there are overhead lines.

They are also packed with the latest environmentally friendly technology for emissions, noise, braking and accelerating, and all the on-board toilets will have tanks to collect waste preventing toilet paper and waste from polluting the countryside (Find out more now ).

So not only will our new trains offer more seats, be more reliable and speed up journeys, but they will play an important role in helping to protect our region’s precious and fragile ecosystems so that the hare and other species can continue to thrive here.

Whether you are travelling for work or exploring the region’s delights as a tourist, you can help by choosing to travel by train. You can find here some of the great offers and events that you can enjoy across the network this spring.