Rail companies give free travel to Invictus Games 2019

LNER Azuma in Leeds
Credit: Harry Gribbins (RailAdvent)

From today, rail companies are now providing free travel for over a 100 wounded, injured and sick service personnel and veterans, as well as their companions, to allow them to compete in the UK trials for the Invictus Games.

The Invictus UK Trials Sheffield 2019, which is delivered through a partnership of Help for Heroes, the Ministry of Defence and The Royal British Legion,

The trials are to run from 22-26 July in four locations around Sheffield, The English Institute of Sport Sheffield, Ponds Forge International Sports Centre, Sheffield Hallam University Athletics Track and a closed cycle circuit around the City.

Supported by their friends, family and carers, over 350 competitors are to take part in up to nine sports.

This includes Archery, Athletics, Cycling, Indoor Rowing, Powerlifting, Sitting Volleyball, Swimming, Wheelchair Basketball and Wheelchair Rugby.

On behalf of all rail companies, the Rail Delivery Group has offered commemorative passes to all competitors, partners or carers who are helping to support the athletes to and from Sheffield, as well as volunteers.

This will provide free rail travel:

  • to Sheffield or Meadowhall stations from any station in Great Britain between Friday 19 July and Friday 26 July
  • from Sheffield or Meadowhall stations to any station in Great Britain between Monday 22 July and Saturday 27 July.

The Rail Delivery Group have now sent the passes to 149 people who have taken them up on the offer.

Along with a packed sports schedule, a wider programme of activity is taking place across the City, supported by Invictus UK’s delivery partners and Sheffield organisations.

Once in Sheffield, Stagecoach Supertram will be offering competitors, as well as their companions with a tram, endorsed accreditation pass in order for them to have free tram travel whilst the trials take place.

Rail companies can also support passengers with assisted travel, which can either be booked by phone, textphone or online.

The rail industry is working together to change and improve accessibility across the network, including introducing thousands more accessible trains, upgrading stations and improving technology for booking assistance.

What did the officials have to say?

Jacqueline Starr, Chief Operating Officer at the Rail Delivery Group, said:

“The rail industry is delighted to offer free travel for the inspiring people taking part in the Invictus UK Trials next week, as well as their companions. Working together, we’re helping to connect communities all across Britain with Sheffield and make it a really exciting event.”

Antony Baines, Director of Operations at The Royal British Legion, said:

“Behind every Team UK member, there are friends, families and carers who have helped get them to the start line. We are delighted that train companies recognise this contribution and are extremely grateful of the free transport they are providing to competitors, their partners and carers. A life-changing injury or illness has a huge impact on both the individual and those around them, so it’s only right that the competitors have the support of their loved ones at the Invictus UK Trials next week.”

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Emma Holden avatar
I have been around trains at heritage railways all my life. In particular, the narrow gauge trains in Wales, and spent many Duncan days at the Talyllyn Railway when I was younger. I have been a volunteer author for RailAdvent since 2019