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Full Steam Ahead - East Lancashire Railway

Tuesday, 20th November 2012

It’s full steam ahead for East Lancashire Railway’s (ELR’s) 88 volunteers who have all successfully completed Welcome Host training, part of the nationally recognised Welcome to Excellence customer service training programme, delivered by Marketing Lancashire.

Welcome Host is one of the country’s most successful customer service training initiatives and helps delegates acquire new customer service and communication skills, as well as improving their knowledge of local facilities and services.   

On meeting some of East Lancashire Railway’s most recent participants Ruth Connor, Chief Executive of Marketing Lancashire, said 

“It is clear that the volunteers have a genuine passion for the railway and a real enthusiasm to share this with visitors.  The Welcome Host training provides them with additional confidence and the skills, to ensure that excellent levels of customer service are delivered across the organisation and that the visitor experience of their time in Lancashire is second to none. 

"We congratulate the team at East Lancashire Railway on their achievement and look forward to supporting and celebrating their continuing success.”

Welcome Host is a one day course delivered by experienced Welcome to Excellence trainers with a wealth of knowledge and experience, and can be tailored to the individual needs of an organisation.  The course is interactive and provides high quality participant materials and, on completion, delegates are presented with a national Welcome to Excellence certificate that is recognised and valued by employers.

The Welcome Host training was tailored to the Railway’s requirements and involved a range of staff including: Travel Ticket Inspectors, Guards, station and information centre staff, booking office staff, bar and kitchen staff, museum staff and event organiser.

Christina Meakin, ELR Sales and Marketing Manager comments  “The Welcome Host training has not only improved the volunteers’ knowledge about the ELR’s own products but also the wider visitor offering and how this can add value to the visitor experience.

“Customer-facing staff have become more knowledgeable and confident in giving out visitor information about the local area and places of interest along the line, ahead of the visit as well as on the day of visit. This has resulted in a substantial increase in numbers of family tickets, Bury Transport Museum tickets and full line return tickets sold.”

Over the last 12 months, more than 800 delegates across the North West have been through Marketing Lancashire’s Welcome to Excellence training courses including National Museums, The Trafford Centre, The Big Blue Hotel and Number One Hotels in Blackpool, The Dalmeny in Lytham St Annes and Stanley House in Mellor.

If your business would benefit from improved customer service delivery then contact

Helen Heyworth, Training Co-ordinator Marketing Lancashire Tel: 01772 426454

Picture shows L to R:

Sarah Kerrison, Bury Transport Museum Manager, Dorothy Moore, ELR volunteer (Events and Education), Christina Meakin, ELR Sales & Marketing Manager, Alan Healey, ELR Travel Ticket Inspector (volunteer), Christopher De Sa, ELR volunteer (Carriage cleaner, Buffet staff), Mike Moore, ELR volunteer (Event Organiser, Member of the Education Group and Events Committee Secretary), Graham Bailey, ELR volunteer (Travel Ticket Inspector Manager, Event Organiser),Graham Law, ELR volunteer (Rawtenstall Station Master), David Layland, ELLR Finance Director,Terry Twamley, ELR volunteer (carriage cleaner and buffet staff).

With Ruth Connor, Chief Executive of Marketing Lancashire, presenting the certificates at Rawtenstall station.


Media enquiries: Anna Izza, Communications Manager, Marketing Lancashire 01772 426 459  

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For more information, practical advice and support, call Marketing Lancashire on:

01772 426450.