Greater Anglia publishes new promise to improve accessibility of rail service
Greater Anglia has outlined its commitment to making the railway more accessible to all customers – the most recent in a series of measures the company has taken to improve disabled customers’ experience of rail travel.
The company has just published a new Accessible Travel policy which is summed up in a user-friendly customer leaflet.
The policy sets out in detail Greater Anglia’s policies for providing assistance for disabled and older customers in all parts of their journey including train and station facilities, journey information, ticketing and fares, travelling with assistance dogs, wheelchair and mobility scooters, blue badge parking, staff training and accessible rail replacement.
It lets customers know exactly what they can expect when travelling and reflects recent changes to Greater Anglia’s accessibility strategy – such as the appointment of an Accessibility Panel, who will help shape the future of rail services in the region, and improvements to staff training.
The policy can be found online at greateranglia.co.uk/accessibility and the customer leaflet is available at all staffed stations or can be sent free of charge via the operator’s Customer Relations Team.
Before the pandemic, around 30,000 people per year used Greater Anglia’s Assisted Travel service to get help with making a train journey. Staff are able to meet passengers, help them get on and off trains or help with luggage. A similar number of customers with accessibility needs also used Greater Anglia services without booking.
Greater Anglia’s Accessibilty Manager, Rebecca Richardson, said, "We want everyone to have a good journey with us and the updated policy and leaflet outlines our promise to do everything we can to ensure that this is the case.
"We recognise the industry has a lot of work to do to improve accessibility and to build a better relationship with our disabled customers and we think our improved training, new accessibility panel and our diversity and inclusion strategy is the start of real progressive change for our business."
The train operator is working to make rail travel more accessible and has recently brought in a new fleet of trains which feature lower level floors and a retractable step at each door, which bridges the gap between station platform and train, making them more accessible for wheelchairs, buggies and people with mobility impairments.
All of Greater Anglia’s new trains will have improved accessibility including dedicated wheelchair spaces and accessible toilets on every train.
There are also several projects currently underway or completed across the network to improve access to stations and waiting rooms.
In addition to the updated policy and customer leaflet, a Train Accessibility Guide and Station Accessibility Guide is also available to download at greateranglia.co.uk/accessibility