Improving Access for all Passengers

Innovations to make life easier for passengers and help staff provide better customer service.

In September 2017, RSSB launched the Accessibility Innovation competition to find new ways to improve access to the railway for disabled passengers and those with less visible impairments.

The innovators are now ready to unveil their solutions to the rail industry.

Deaf and hard-of-hearing people


In the UK 11m people have hearing impairments. This project developed a toolkit to train staff in British Sign Language (BSL) and an app to deliver key customer information in BSL. Arriva Rail London is in the process of rolling out the training to its front line staff.

Station assessment


The ACCESS app offers a straightforward way to assess accessibility at stations, using a traffic-light system, and identify priorities for improvement. It is available now and free to download.

Less visible impairments


This immersive and interactive learning tool helps passengers to familiarise themselves with the train station environment by playing a game in which they complete navigational and problem-solving tasks.

The collected data can be used to help staff understand the situations their customers find challenging.



Zipabout combines big data and personalisation to make passengers’ journeys as seamless as possible, through real-time guidance fed to their preferred messaging app. The tool also gathers unique behavioural and demand data as passenger interact with it. It is currently being piloted with Great Western Railway.

People with dementia

Welcome Aboard

850,000 people in the UK live with dementia, and this number is set to rise to over a million by 2025. The Welcome Aboard app provides two-way communication between passengers and staff. It has a ‘check-in’ feature, to alert staff when a passenger gets to the station. A successful pilot was carried out at Edinburgh Waverley station. The app will be ready to use in January 2020.

People with autism


The Aubin app is a journey planner with a difference. Rather than focusing on the shortest journey time or lowest cost as other planners do, it allows people on the autistic spectrum to plan their journeys to minimise factors – such as changing trains or busy stations – they may find stressful.

The app will be ready for use in January 2020.

Next steps

Each of these companies is looking to work with partners to roll out their solutions. Come and watch all the innovators demonstrate their products at the RSSB Accessibility Solutions Showcase in London on 18 December. If you are interested in attending, email

Haven’t found what you’re looking for?
Get in touch with our Senior Programme Manager, Innovation for further information.
Paul McGuire
Paul McGuire
Tel: 020 3142 5634
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