Travel training for you
Many train companies now offer ‘Try the Train’ days to familiarise you with trains and stations and how best to use them and their facilities. This can be especially useful if you are a wheelchair user or have impaired mobility as it allows you to test ride the trains and see the sort of help that Passenger Assist can provide. From this you can assess for yourself how easy rail travel can now be and what level of assistance, if any, you should ask for.
The design of trains has improved considerably in recent years and after refurbishment even many older trains are now much more accessible than they were when built.
A range of stations across the country has benefitted from millions of pounds’ worth of accessibility improvement to make the going easier: lifts and slopes have replaced stairs; automatic doors have been installed to ticket offices and waiting rooms; dropped kerbs make it easier to get to the station entrance; accessible facilities have been installed at stations; new information systems are provided on many trains and platforms; tactile paving at stations enhances the journey experience for visually-impaired passengers; induction loops at help points and ticket offices assist hearing-aid users; improved lighting and clearer glass at ticket windows enables hearing-impaired passengers to lipread more easily.
Come and try it for yourself. Contact your local train company and see what arrangements they plan to familiarise passengers like you with what rail can now offer. If you have not travelled by rail recently you may well be in for a very pleasant surprise.