Online virtual tour of Marks Tey rail station will help people travel with confidence

Published on: Friday, 3 May 2024
Last updated: Friday, 3 May 2024

Screenshot of the virtual tour of Marks Tey rail station.

Above: Screenshot of the virtual tour of Marks Tey rail station. Credit: Greater Anglia

A short video is available here:

Train operator, Greater Anglia, has launched an online virtual tour of Marks Tey rail station to help people travel with confidence.

The tour has been designed to support journey planning, give passengers a clearer picture of the station before they travel, and reduce anxiety about how they’ll get around. It is particularly helpful for disabled people wanting to check accessible routes through the station.

Using the virtual tour, people can find out how to get to all public areas, including the toilets, ticket machine, platforms, waiting room, and cycle storage.

Detailed 360-degree photography lets users travel round the station realistically, and aerial photography and an interactive map show the location of all the facilities in relation to each other.

Key features can be navigated to directly through a drop-down menu system, while the ‘autopilot’ tool gives users the option of selecting their destination and being automatically guided to it.

Greater Anglia already has tours for 16 of its busiest stations for Passenger Assistance, as well its entire new train fleet.

Members of Greater Anglia’s Accessibility Panel, a group of disabled customers who meet regularly with the train operator, offered feedback during the development of the virtual tours and have been supportive of the project.

The technology was provided by a company called The Virtual Tour Experts and the tour has been designed to be accessible. A spoken scene guide with closed captions plays on the home page at the station entrance and it features an accessibility widget that enables the user to change to high contrast, large font size or audio transcription. Future developments will look at incorporating British Sign Language videos.

The tours can be viewed at on any device and the addition of more stations is planned in the future.

Greater Anglia’s Accessibility and Inclusion Manager, Rebecca Richardson, said,

“The idea was to create a tool for customers to assist them with their journey planning and reduce the anxiety about whether the station would create any accessibility barriers, so that they can travel with confidence.

“We are committed to making rail more accessible and providing quality information to enable more informed journey planning."

360-degree virtual tours are now available for 17 of Greater Anglia’s busiest stations – Bishop’s Stortford, Broxbourne, Cambridge, Chelmsford, Cheshunt, Colchester, Ely, Harlow Town, Ingatestone, Ipswich, London Liverpool Street, Manningtree, Marks Tey, Norwich, Shenfield, Southend Victoria, and Stansted Airport.

In addition, Greater Anglia’s new trains are also much more accessible and easier to use than the trains they replaced, so rail journeys across the region are much more straightforward for many travellers than was previously the case.