The Isle of Wight and Lymington Brockenhurst have worked closely over the years, replicating projects both on the Island and mainland that have been devised to support our communities whilst delivering a range of benefits including support for learning and skills.
One such project has been that of TravelSafe, which started just as a poster campaign in 2006, promoting safe travel, designed by and for young people using public transport. This then led to 2 films both on the island and mainland, again all worked on by young people from Schools and Colleges and local film/production companies.
They were received well and it was certainly getting the message out there to young people, encouraging groups to set up their own TravelSafe workshops and meetings and to think of new ideas to carry on getting the message out there of safe responsible travel.
However, the partnerships have been increasingly aware, working with our transport partners, that statistics of fatalities in and around public transport have been rising alarmingly, particularly those aged 11 -18 using their mobile devices and or plugged in loudly to their music. We wanted to encourage more people to travel, but safely and with parents of young people using the network, to feel confident something was being done on a regular basis in partnership to increase awareness amongst this age group.
With this in mind and understanding that young people won’t stop using their phones or listening to music, it was going to need a new and strong message to go out.
It needed to be straight to the point and one that would reach everybody who would be shocked into sharing a message online across social media with the message of #share-help save a life.
Firstly, project officer Bobby Lock formed a strong steering group to manage the message appropriately, that TOC’s and other transport companies would support. This consisted of primarily Security and Route Crime Project Manager at South West Trains (SWT), Ellie Reilly, and Community Safety Manager Network Rail and SWT, Lindsay Banks.
A specification was written for film companies to give a quote to produce a film and most importantly, be able to support young people to be involved in the process; from story boards, filming, post production, launch and then workshops in September to schools on both the Island and New Forest. Then the Colleges and schools were approached to offer the chance for young people to take part in the project for which we had four young people from the Isle of Wight College Media Studies and young people in junior schools on the mainland.
One company shined through and a timeline was then formed, subject to all funding being successful. It was indeed successful and the CRP officer managed to secure £37,000 for a film, website and workshops, with supporting posters and marketing.
At this point, as we were covering bus too, the group felt we needed to involve Southern Vectis General Manager, Matt Kitchen and Managing Director of Go South Coast, Andrew Wickham to ensure the bus content was appropriate and consistent with the message we wanted to get across. They were delighted.
The film ran to schedule with filming completed at the beginning of April 2015. Post production then started in Ernest with several trips to the Isle of Wight College by the production company to liaise with students. A website has been designed and will be available for teachers to download teaching aids and resource packs. These have been made available from the British Transport Police (BTP) and Network Rail to be available to schools and colleges on transition days at the beginning of July, for students moving up to high school and college to see the film.
To sustain the message of being safe to 11-18 year olds, the CRP have secured funding to do a week’s workshop in September in Island and Mainland schools with the Media Studies students, Red Tie Theatre Company, the actors in the film and the film makers working with South West Trains and Network Rail.
This is all to support the key message of safety at stations and around public/transport to students using them and encourage more passengers to confidently and safely use our great rail service but most importantly help decrease the recent statistics that have been constantly rising.
LSTF IoW £15,000
LSTF New Forest National Park Authority £4,000
LSTF Hampshire County Council £5,000
South West Trains £2,000
Go Ahead £2,000
Isle of Wight College £1,000