Great Western Railway has this week unveiled a special livery thanking key workers for their incredible efforts during the covid-19 pandemic, inspired by the company’s design a train competition.
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.
The insignia, carried by Intercity Express Train number 802020, incorporates the ideas of three teenagers who entered a competition on GWR’s social media channels to design a train livery.
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; and 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.
It has been unveiled days before the nation joins in one final NHS clap today at 5.00pm, to applaud all those who have helped through the pandemic and recognise the vital community connections that continue to support us all.
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.
Mr Dunn 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 head of external communications Dan Panes said: “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.