New programme to provide sports activity sessionsShrewsbury Town's Community Sports Trust are launching an exciting new programme with Network Rail.
The programme will provide education and sports activity sessions following the development of Network Rail’s Rail Life programme, created and designed to divert young people away from the dangers of playing on the railway tracks.
The new partnership between Network Rail and The Football League Trust (FLT) will see Shrewsbury Town CST, along with nine other Football League clubs, work with Network Rail's community safety managers to boost awareness of railway safety.
Some of the sessions will be delivered on the Club’s doorstep at the Lucozade Powerleague - a prime location to deliver a railway safety education programme with a railway running adjacent to the football ground.
Tragically, 164 people lost their lives after going onto the tracks in the last five years.
Of these, 70 per cent were struck by trains with 18 per cent suffering electrocution by coming into contact with the power supply which can be as much as 25,000 volts.
The peak ages for trespass fatalities are late teens and earlier 20s with around one in five deaths in this age group.
While young people were not responsible for all these incidents, Network Rail focuses its education activities on school age children to promote good behaviour.
Ashley Vincent, Town's Network Rail player ambassador, will take an active role in the project by attending sessions and acting as a role model, reinforcing the rail safety messages.
Commenting on his involvement in the programme, Vincent said: “It is great to have the opportunity to be involved in a programme which involves keeping young people in our community safe, as well as supporting a national initiative.”
Commenting on the partnership, Mike Evans, general manager at the Football League Trust, said: "Football League clubs are at the heart of their communities and therefore have the incredible ability to reach people.
"Our partnership with Network Rail shows how football can use this ability to talk to young people about a serious issue and make a positive difference to people’s lives.”
Gareth Llewellyn, director of safety and sustainability at Network Rail, also said: "We know of too many incidents where seemingly harmless pranks or games along the tracks have resulted in painful injury or even death.
"The Football League Trust and the clubs involved can help us raise awareness of the dangers and engage kids in something much more positive. The results will be a safer community and better running railway for all."
The sessions will commence on Monday 15 September from 6-7pm and will be open to children aged between 12 and 14. The programme will be completely free and will continue for ten weeks.
For further information email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01743 289177.