The Safer Travel Partnership has been giving Santa a helping hand this year to make sure children in the West Midlands get their Christmas presents.
Officers from British Transport Police and West Midlands Police used all three forms of public transport to deliver gifts for youngsters on University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire (UHCW) NHS Trust’s children’s ward to open on Christmas day.
Along with staff from Transport for West Midlands, the officers gave up their free time and – dressed as elves – sung and danced their way from Birmingham to Coventry on the tram, train and bus, spreading a little festive cheer as they went by handing out selection boxes donated by London Midland.
Arriving in Broadgate, the Safer Travel team then picked up more than 70 presents donated by local businesses, which were handed over by the city’s Business Improvement District team in aid of University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire Charity’s Pack An Extra Present campaign.
A short video of the team’s journey has been released on social media, which sees Rudolph driving a bus to collect gifts from Santa whose sleigh has broken down.
Inspector Rachel Crump, policing lead for the Safer Travel Partnership, said: “We wanted to make a video with a simple message, encouraging people to be kind and considerate on public transport this Christmas, while also letting the public know we are here if you need us.
“This was all filmed in our spare time with presents, selection boxes and outfits being donated by local transport companies or businesses.
“We had a great reaction from passengers when we were out filming and we hope the many children we met will remember the time an officer dressed as an elf gave them a present, so they know we are friendly and approachable. But above all, we wish everyone a Merry Christmas and hope people have as much fun watching the video as we did making it!”
Trish Willetts, Coventry Business Improvement District (BID) manager, said: “The Safer Travel Partnership issued a call to arms and Coventry businesses were only too happy to help.
“I am so pleased that we could offer a little bit of festive joy to University Hospitals Coventry & Warwickshire and the children that are being cared for there.
“But there is an important message within this and I would urge everyone to be respectful while using public transport within Coventry and beyond its borders.”
Notes to editors
You can access the video here:
https://youtu.be/UM5MK_i2-Zo (Facebook and YouTube with subtitles 2m 56s)
https://youtu.be/n2Tr-IVYQIA (Twitter version 2m 24s)
British Transport Police Press Office Contact : 07920 491 158
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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 2013 London Midland was awarded the Investors in People (IiP) Silver Award and been awarded the 5 Star award by the European Foundation for Quality Management (EFQM) in 2014.