Manchester passengers thanked for using the train instead of the car

Last Tuesday, 9 November, passengers arriving at [1] Victoria station were welcomed by comedian and professional greeter Troy Hawke to thank them for choosing rail travel for their journeys and to pass on the message that everyday acts like taking the train can make a major contribution to reducing carbon emissions.

Welcoming the passengers, Troy Hawke escorted passengers down a green carpet and dished out compliments to thank them for choosing rail instead of a more polluting form of transport. A string quartet was also on hand to serenade them, whilst a specially installed photobooth gave them the chance to capture the moment in their rail journey.

ICBT Manchester Troy salute Troy Hawke passing on the message. // Credit: Trainline

The event formed part of Trainline's “Unlikely Heroes” campaign that includes advertising across Manchester of local people travelling by train to create a wider awareness of the environmental benefits of rail travel.

Although cars and domestic flights are responsible for 58% of the UK's domestic transport CO2 emissions, compared to just 1.5% from the entire rail network, research by Trainline shows that there is a lack of public awareness about the carbon benefits of travelling by train.

Just 17% of people know that if they switched one long-distance car or plane journey for train travel, there would be a significant benefit to the [2].

ICBT Manchester String quartet entertaining passengers at [3]. // Credit: Trainline

For its part, Trainline is headlining over 40 journeys around Manchester as “Super Routes”, which are either cheaper or faster by rail instead of car or plane. They provide an average cost saving of £2.50 and time saving of 5 minutes per journey by using the train instead of the car. The Super Routes include both long-distance and local journeys, with the savings soon adding up for anyone who travel by train several times a week. Example of saving on offer include:

  • Manchester to London – 35 minutes quicker and £37 cheaper by train instead of flying, and 1hr 45 faster than driving;
  • Manchester to Glasgow – 18 minutes faster and £16.18 cheaper than by car;
  • Manchester to [4] – 3 minutes faster and £1.06 cheaper than by car;
  • Manchester to [5] – 7 minutes quicker and £0.83 cheaper than by car;
  • Manchester to [6] – 4 minutes quicker and £2.25 cheaper than by car.

Pete Wade, Chief Commercial Officer for Trainline said: “We want to champion the environmental benefits of rail travel into and around Manchester. That's why we've been celebrating passengers at Manchester Victoria here today, because by choosing the train they reduced the possible environmental emissions of their journey – even if they didn't realise. We are promoting these Super Routes where people can save themselves time and money as well as helping the environment, because we want them to be proud to say to their friends and family: I came by train.”

Mike McCusker, Lead Member for Planning, Transport and Sustainable Development at Salford City Council, said: “Rail travel helps reduce congestion as well as emissions and we want to encourage more people onboard trains.

“As an [7] Councillor I can get to the city centre by train in less than 10 minutes for the price of a couple of hours parking and reduce my carbon footprint, rather than queuing on Regent Road for 20 minutes and then having to find a parking space.

“Highlighting the cost, carbon and time saving benefits of train travel is an excellent way to build awareness among local residents and we are proud to promote the I Came By Train initiative.”

Jools Townsend, Chief Executive of Community Rail Network, a grassroots movement engaging and empowering local communities with rail, said: “Rail, combined with buses, walking, cycling and shared mobility, provides a huge part of the solution to the climate emergency: the evidence is clear that shifting as many journeys as we can onto these modes, breaking down green travel barriers, and reducing traffic is what we need to do to forge a more sustainable, healthy, inclusive future.

“That's why we're proud to be part of the I Came By Train movement, raising awareness about greener travel, and empowering more people to feel confident and able to make journeys that are good for people and planet.”


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