Wednesday 22 Oct 2003
CHIRPY SAYS: “IT’S FREE, IT’S CONFIDENTIAL AND IT CAN SAVE LIVES”
- Region & Route:
Network Rail, its industry partners and Tottenham Hotspur’s mascot, Chirpy, today unveiled a specially painted train and launched a competition aimed at reducing railway crime.
Mark Phillips, Network Rail, Regional Director said: “Each year children are seriously injured and can be killed by playing on the railway. The railway is dangerous, it is not a playground and children should stay away. This crime prevention train and our Spurs’ competition will help to raise the profile of railway crime. ”
The WAGN train, that will run from Liverpool Street Station to Chingford, Enfield Town and Hertford East, has brand new livery and is emblazoned with the British Transport Police’s free and confidential railway crime telephone number. The train will run during the forthcoming half term until this time next year.
A recent study showed that 90% of railway crime is carried out by young people – a startling statistic. This is particularly true on the West Anglia route. Every day train drivers and railway staff report children throwing stones at trains, taking short cuts across the railway, playing on embankments, playing chicken in front of trains and vandalising railway property. In total, 95 incidents of trespass and vandalism have been recorded on this route during the last six months. The location with the highest number of incidents is Higham’s Park, followed by Seven Sisters and Broxbourne.
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Livery – 2
To combat these illegal and dangerous activities, Network Rail and its industry partners invest time and money into education and enforcement programmes. On the West Anglia route, Network Rail has employed Tottenham Hotspur to run after school and holiday clubs, diverting children away from the boredom of holidays and after school and towards, fun, educational activities.
Tottenham Hotspur Community Officer, Steve Grenfell, said: “It is vital that children understand the danger of the railway. We have worked with Network Rail for three years to raise awareness, and reduce trespass and vandalism on our railways. Our coaches are role models to the thousands of children they see each year. The children really respond to their heroes delivering the rail safety message.”
Tottenham’s Football in the Community Scheme reaches over 150,000 children per year and the figure is rising.
During the October half term, Network Rail and Tottenham Hotspur are running a railway competition. If you see our railway crime train at any WAGN station send us the day, time, location you spotted it, including the British Transport Police free phone number, and you could win a Spurs’ prize. The top prize is for the winner and a friend to spend a day at White Hart Lane, football training and a touring the ground. There are 10 runners up prizes. Entry details will be displayed at all WAGN stations between Liverpool Street, Chingford, Enfield Town and Hertford East.
To confidentially report any acts of railway crime, please call the British Transport Police’s free telephone number on 0800 40 50 40. Report it – don’t ignore it.
About Network Rail
We own, operate and develop Britain's railway infrastructure; that's 20,000 miles of track, 30,000 bridges, tunnels and viaducts and the thousands of signals, level crossings and stations. We run 20 of the UK's largest stations while all the others, over 2,500, are run by the country's train operating companies.
Usually, there are almost five million journeys made in the UK and over 600 freight trains run on the network. People depend on Britain's railway for their daily commute, to visit friends and loved ones and to get them home safe every day. Our role is to deliver a safe and reliable railway, so we carefully manage and deliver thousands of projects every year that form part of the multi-billion pound Railway Upgrade Plan, to grow and expand the nation's railway network to respond to the tremendous growth and demand the railway has experienced - a doubling of passenger journeys over the past 20 years.
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