Great Western Railway (GWR) has given one of its Class 802 Intercity Express Trains a new livery, thanking key workers for their incredible efforts during the COVID-19 pandemic.
With a theme of ‘The nation says thank you’, the special design features words of gratitude in 116 different languages used by those living across the GWR network
GWR ran a ‘design a train’ competition on its social media channels, and the final design that has been applied to train 802020 contains ideas from three teenagers who entered.
Sam Smith, 13, from Gloucestershire, suggested the words ‘The nation says thank you’; Sam Moorey, 15, from Newton Abbot, proposed saying ‘thank you’ in different languages while Ned Thompson, 16, of Guildford, crafted the overall design.
GWR worked with local authorities and NHS trusts to ensure the diversity of communities across the network was represented. The livery features 109 speech bubbles, using 116 languages from at least 166 countries.
The ‘design a special train livery’ competition was judged by railway historian and broadcaster Tim Dunn, who admitted it was a tough task settling on the final design. He said: “Everyone is incredibly grateful to those key workers, including the railway family, who have been working tirelessly to help us through the pandemic.
“We wanted the design to represent the thoughts and thanks of those living across the network and believe the inclusion of these different languages is the perfect way to illustrate everyone’s gratitude.
“Hats off to the two Sams and Ned for coming up with such original concepts.”
GWR’s head of external communications, Dan Panes, added: “We wanted to give people the opportunity to express their thanks to key workers in a unique way.
“This design on one of our Intercity Express Trains will provide a lasting tribute to the selfless dedication of all those who have given everything to help us through these unprecedented times.”
The special livery has been funded by rolling stock leasing company, Eversholt Rail, and Intercity Express Train manufacturer Hitachi Rail.
Mary Kenny, Chief Executive Officer at Eversholt Rail, said: “We are proud to support Great Western Railway with this fantastic initiative to thank all of the key workers who have supported the country throughout these difficult times.
“The number of fantastic entries to the competition shows that so many people appreciate the hard work and dedication of our key workers and want to say ‘thank you’.
“Congratulations to the two Sams and Ned for their winning entries.”
Andy Radford, UK projects director at Hitachi Rail, said: “We have seen first-hand the resilience of key workers, either as passengers using our trains for essential travel or rail staff who kept trains running safely during the peak of the pandemic.
“Hitachi Rail is proud to be part of this fitting tribute, but equally delighted to be giving passengers a reason to smile.”
GWR continues to remind customers to do all they can to follow social distancing guidance. As well as wearing a face covering, planning ahead and avoiding peak travel times where possible, customers are urged to buy tickets online, on a smart card or by using the GWR app.
Thank you in 116 different languages:
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