Vélo Birmingham partner organisation, London Midland, will be choosing a different form of wheeled transport, to help benefit Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity at the inaugural 100-mile cycle sportive.
The train operating company will have an impressive tally of 61 riders taking part in Vélo Birmingham, each wearing branded jerseys to stand out among the event’s 15,000 participants.
The closed-road cycle, which takes place on Sunday, September 24, starts and finishes on Broad Street, before taking riders into spectacular Worcestershire and Staffordshire countryside.
It is the flagship event of the Birmingham Cycle Revolution– a Birmingham City Council initiative aiming to make cycling an everyday way to travel in Birmingham over the next 20 years.
London Midland will be raising money for its nominated charity, Birmingham Children’s Hospital. The franchise has worked closely with the hospital over the last year, acting as a presenting partner of the Big Sleuth 2017, the public art sculpture trail which has seen colourful bears taking residence across the West Midlands.
Leading the London Midland charity efforts at Vélo will be Patrick Verwer, managing director, and Ian McLaren, finance and contracts director.
“London Midland believes passionately in getting closer to the communities we serve,” said Patrick.
“One of the ways we do this is by promoting and encouraging healthy lifestyles. With a 61-strong team of London Midland riders in this year’s event, Vélo is a perfect partner for us.
“We hope everyone, whether taking part or spectating, has a fabulous day getting to explore their local area and cheering on the riders.”
London Midland has advised that while all stations will be open as usual on September 24, rail passengers should allow extra time when travelling to and from stations on the Vélo route, to account for road alterations.
Stourbridge Junction station will be additionally affected, as it will only be accessible to pedestrians from 06.30 – 11.00. The booking office staff will be looking to make alternative arrangements for parking.
The train operating company serves 75 million passenger journeys a year, around and between London, Birmingham and Liverpool.
Its new customer experience project, Labs by London Midland, is working hard to reimagine rail travel through innovation, enhancing passengers’ journeys with amenities such as free Wi-Fi and Motion, a new on-board entertainment service.
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Since 2007, London Midland has been providing train services to and from London in the south, to Birmingham in the Midlands and Liverpool in the north-west. Over 70 million passenger journeys a year are made using on the network and London Midland manages 150 stations and operates 1,300 services a day.
London Midland is owned by Govia, the partnership between the Go-Ahead Group and Keolis. Govia is the UK’s busiest rail operator, responsible for nearly 30 per cent of UK passenger rail journeys through its three rail companies, GTR (which includes Gatwick Express services), Southeastern and London Midland. Further information on Govia is available at www.govia.info
London Midland has won a range of awards, including Best Local Transport Integration, five Rail Business Awards for marketing, public relations and customer information, five Golden Spanner Awards for Engineering, three IOIC awards for internal communication and three Railstaff Awards for Outstanding Customer Service, Lifesaving and Charity Work. In 2017 London Midland was named as Britain's most improved train company by the Institute of Rail Operators and the UK's most improved organisation for customer service in the UKCSI survey.
In 2017 London Midland was awarded the Investors in People (IiP) Gold Award and been awarded the 5 Star award by the European Foundation for Quality Management (EFQM) in 2014.