Rail volunteers join forces to promote East Anglia as a tourist destination

Thursday, 18 May 2017

A group of volunteers descended on one of Europe’s busiest rail stations yesterday to promote East Anglia as a tourist destination.

The East Suffolk Lines Community Rail Partnership (CRP), Essex and South Suffolk CRP and Norfolk-based Bittern Line and Wherry Lines CRPs joined forces at London Liverpool Street Station to highlight tourism and travel opportunities across Essex, Suffolk and Norfolk by train and to help launch a nationwide campaign to encourage people to explore ‘Scenic Rail Britain’.

The Community Rail Partnerships, train operator Greater Anglia and their partners are working together to promote the many attractions the region has to offer, including the picturesque rural branch lines, with the aim of encouraging more people to use the train to visit and travel around the region this summer.

Martin Halliday, Community Rail Officer at the East Suffolk Lines Community Rail Partnership, said: “Both yesterday's event and the Scenic Rail Britain campaign are a great opportunity to promote the railways in our region to thousands of commuters and potential visitors. Suffolk has so much to offer tourists from both within the UK and further afield including many bustling market towns, traditional seaside resorts, a wealth of historic sites, unique wildlife and a host of cultural and sporting activities, all in addition to being the southern gateway to the Broads National Park. We are pleased that Scenic Rail Britain will help to convey this fantastic offer to wider audiences encouraging people to visit by rail rather than car. Travelling on a train offers an opportunity to enjoy so much more of our unique landscape and in addition to benefitting the local economy, brings less traffic, noise and pollution to our communities.”

"We would also like to acknowledge the role of Network Rail and Greater Anglia for their help with the event today and their ongoing support of Community Rail activities in the East."

The Community Rail Partnerships take a proactive approach to marketing and promoting local train services, bringing them closer to the local communities they serve. In recent years their efforts have contributed to raising the profile of rail lines across the region, supporting service improvements, improving station presentation and facilities and increasing community involvement. Supported by Greater Anglia, their actions have helped increase the positive role of the railways in improving accessibility, promoting tourism and underpinning the local economy.

Jonathan Denby, Greater Anglia’s Head of Corporate Affairs said: “The representatives from the Community Rail Partnerships did a fantastic job in raising the profile of the region and in particular raising awareness of our rural branch lines to people in the City. I’d like to thank them for their efforts. I’m sure more people will be encouraged to get out and about this summer, exploring East Anglia by rail, as a result of the event.

“There are some great value fares for days out on these scenic local fares for trips to the coast, the countryside, local attractions or even a spot of shopping.”