Monday 22 Jan 2007
WYCOMBE FOOTBALL FANS GIVE RAILWAY CRIME THE RED CARD
- Region & Route:
North West & Central
Hundreds of Wycombe Wanderers fans young and old joined forces with Network Rail this weekend to help kick railway crime into touch.
Wycombe's match with Accrington Stanley on Saturday 20 January was sponsored by Network Rail's No Messin'! campaign - a safety initiative aimed at educating young people about the dangers of playing on the railway. Some 2000 free match tickets were given out to local children and their families who turned up in force at Adams Park to cheer Wycombe on and learn more about rail safety.
Network Rail Route Director Peter Strachan said: "Every year hundreds of people risk their lives by trespassing on the railway. The No Messin'! campaign is a great way for us to encourage young people to get involved in healthy activities, such as football, instead of risking their lives on the railway. I am pleased so many families braved the cold weather to come along to the game and hope that everyone who attended will help our fight against railway crime by passing on the No Messin’! message to their family and friends."
A marquee was set up outside the ground before the game giving young football fans the chance to win No Messin'! prizes including t-shirts and kit bags. And it wasn't just the kids who got involved in getting the message across. Both teams and ball boys wore special T-shirts with No Messin'! logos in the warm up and the players were surrounded by leaflets as they signed programmes, shirts and flags for dozens of excited young fans before the game.
At half time, players from Wanderers' kids team took part in a penalty shoot out on the pitch with No Messin'! kit, and then armed with No Messin'! banners they paraded the important rail safety messages to the crowd. The match day programme also included a page outlining the dangers of railway crime.
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.
Follow us on Twitter: @networkrail
Visit our online newsroom: www.networkrailmediacentre.co.uk