Established in September 2016, the GTR Access Advisory Panels (AAP) are made up of 11 passenger representatives and three members of staff. They are split to focus on Thameslink/ Great Northern, and Southern/ Gatwick Express, and chaired by the respective Passenger Service Director at frequent meetings throughout the year.
Utilising insight from journey reports submitted by panel members, GTR can improve accessibility across the network, with specific feedback requested, such as any ‘highs’ or ‘lows’ they may have experienced since the last panel meeting.
To better-support passengers who may require more assistance, the panels have led a number of projects to help provide greater confidence when travelling across the network. They include the GTR Communication Guide & Travel Support Card, a new campaign to promote Priority Seating, a ‘passenger etiquette’ handbook and a new passenger map to outline accessible stations across the network.
As part of the ongoing Thameslink Programme, feedback has been provided on the design of the new Class 700 trains, as well as incoming passenger information systems. Therefore, in the coming months, the panel will be consulted on a planned trial of ‘humps’ that enable independent boarding at core stations, ahead of their wider roll out next year.
‘Minor works’ = Big impact
GTR is also undertaking a programme of so-called ‘minor works’ which can have a huge impact on our passengers on a dayto- day basis, such as the new ramp at Hadley Wood.
The Southern/ Gatwick Express members have been integral to the introduction of a new travel support service at our rail control centre at Three Bridges. This has been designed to support passengers who need boarding assistance from un-staffed stations on our routes that are served by services with On Board Supervisors.