Published on: Friday, 30 June 2023
Last updated: Friday, 30 June 2023
Sawbridgeworth station decorated in celebration of Pride. Credit: Greater Anglia
Greater Anglia is celebrating Pride – and is inviting those taking part in this summer’s Pride events in the region to let the train take the strain to get to events and festivals over the next couple of months.
The company, which runs trains from London to Cambridgeshire, Essex, Hertfordshire, Suffolk and Norfolk, has stations close to where a number of the key events will be held, enabling everyone to celebrate across the East of England, including:
- Suffolk Pride, centred around Ipswich (Friday 30 June to Monday 31 July)
- London Pride (Saturday 1 July)
- Southend Pride (Friday 7 to Saturday 15 July)
- Ely Pride (Saturday 29 July)
- Norwich Pride (Saturday 29 July)
- Colchester Pride (Saturday 12 August)
Travellers are advised that engineering works take place on Sunday 9 and 16 July between Ipswich and the Cambridge area/Ely, with buses replacing trains on these dates.
In addition, on 29 July buses will replace trains between Ely and Norwich and industrial action is also currently scheduled to take place on that date. Customers are advised to check journey details at www.greateranglia.co.uk before they travel.
Over the course of June, Greater Anglia staff have proudly put up flags and bunting at stations as part of this year’s Pride celebration.
A workshop called ‘Greater Together’ was also launched, which aims to get staff talking across the whole company regardless of their role, sharing their own life experiences, seeing actions from a different perspective, tackling any unconscious biases and challenging their own thinking.
A group for LGBT+ colleagues and their allies’ called ‘Affinity’ was also set up earlier in the year.
The aim of the group, run by frontline and manager members of staff together, is to inspire action, education and connection, along with acting as a support and community around the topic of sexuality and ensure the company is as inclusive as possible.
Jamie Gooch, Senior Conductor based at Norwich and member of the Affinity group, said:
“Since coming to work for Greater Anglia, I’ve been very lucky to be able to be my true self at work and to feel comfortable in doing so.
“The fact that I identify as a gay man has not had any impact on the way my managers or colleagues treat me at work.
“Many of our customers and colleagues are part of the LGBT+ community and the areas in which we live can be quite isolated due to the rural nature. This can lead to feelings of isolation within the LGBT+ community.
“We are in a prime position to help people to get to Pride events and tackle this isolation by connecting all members of the community. We truly can assist in bringing people together.”
Liam Reynolds, Customer Service Supervisor at Shenfield station and member of the Affinity group, said:
“It is always heart-warming to see the railway come together to celebrate events, including Pride.
“There is always a great buzz around the station and network when customers are heading to the festivals.”
Martin Moran, Greater Anglia’s Commercial Director, said:
“Our staff always are passionate around events and festivals and Pride is no exception.
“It is lovely to see our stations decorated for the celebration of Pride as well as the Affinity group and Greater Together workshop being set up to improve our knowledge of diversity even further.
“We’re looking forward to transporting our customers to Pride festivals and to help with celebrations all over our network in the coming few months.”