The eye-catching makeover of the Thameslink Class 700 train was designed by a GTR apprentice and celebrates the rail company’s thriving LGBT+ community.
Dubbed ‘trainbow’ by GTR colleagues, the 12-carriage train will be part of the Thameslink fleet, operating an enhanced service for hundreds of thousands of revellers travelling to and from Pride, which is just two weeks away on August 2-4.
The rainbow design will also be used on merchandise and GTR’s first-ever float in the Pride parade, which will carry members of the company’s LGBT+ network and other colleagues. It is accompanied by GTR’s Pride motto: “Our people bring out our best colours”.
Maggie Luckhurst, 21, GTR’s design and content apprentice and a member of its LGBT+ network, said: “This was a really special project to work on for me, and I’m grateful that I got to work alongside many other fantastic people in the company.
“I’ve always had a huge interest in the railways, so to be able to combine that with my creativity in this job has been a dream. I’ll be keeping an eye out for this train on my commute.”
Maggie, who joined the marketing team through GTR’s apprenticeship programme in April 2018, added: “Whether you’re a member of the LGBT+ community or not, I hope that the train brings joy to everyone who sees it and that it also raises awareness of LGBT+ issues.”
Stuart Meek, train services director and chairman of GTR’s LGBT+ network, said: “We are absolutely delighted to see the train out in passenger service. This symbol of support shows how everyone is welcome on our services and celebrates our LGBT+ colleagues.”
GTR’s LGBT+ network is made up of colleagues and advocates from departments across the organisation. It serves as a support and social network and making plans for Pride have topped the agenda at recent meetings.
GTR, which runs Southern, Thameslink and Gatwick Express services out of Brighton, is preparing for an enhanced rail service during Pride with services running late into the night on Saturday evening to help get visitors home.
An enhanced “rainbow” queuing system will channel passengers leaving the city into the appropriate queue for their train before they get to the station.