20 June 2024

[20 June 2024] Local rail operator, Trenitalia c2c is proud to reveal that its second annual school rail project – where the children from our local primary schools were tasked with creating a model train –in partnership with Primary Engineer, has been a massive success!

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Children from schools in the East London area recently gathered at a celebration event at the University of East London’s sports hall to showcase their efforts in the classroom to a panel of rail engineer judges, while putting their creations through a series of tests.

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The event, organised to inspire children to follow a career path in rail engineering, saw over 50 children from eight different schools participate in a rail inspired challenge. The older children had to create a model that used an electric motor and battery pack to move the train backwards and forwards, while the younger pupils were tasked with creating a model that had working string brakes.

The challenge captured the imagination of the children and there were some amazing designs put forward, with inspiration coming from such subjects as the night sky and fire engines. Initially, the children began building their designs at school, where they refined them over two sessions before bringing them to be judged by a panel of rail engineers.

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Many of the children showed a keen interest in the mechanics of their creations, creating picture journeys of their efforts in building their trains and detailing which parts they found to be the most challenging.

When asked what they’d like to do to make their creations even better, one pupil said that he wanted to “take off the brakes and add more batteries and motors.” Perhaps we should keep the brakes, but his passion for more power certainly came across!

When the medals and awards were handed out, the winning design, inspired by Vincent van Gogh’s ‘The Starry Night,’ was greeted with rapturous applause, with its two creators from Portway Primary School accepting their award in front of the assembled engineers and children.

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c2c Head of Engineering, Jeff Baker, said: “We’re so proud of all the children that took part in this celebration event we want to thank the schools and teachers for taking part. To be able to inspire a group of young people to design their own trains and to take an interest in the railway is an honour for us and the final designs were incredible.

“It was great to see the enthusiasm from the children and the effort they had all clearly put into their designs.”

One of the judges, Alstom Shift Production Manager, Ricky Stebbings, further added: “It’s nice to have such a great impact on the local community. To be here providing our expertise and trying to get the kids into an engineering or railway career path is really fun and rewarding.

“We’re teaching them that anybody can get into rail engineering and that it is a fun and fulfilling field to be involved in.”

Mel Sinclair, Service Delivery Contract Manager at Primary Engineer, said of the event: “It’s amazing to see the children’s designs and what they are able to do with the materials in the classroom. The children put so much effort into it, so to be able to celebrate that, by partnering with c2c, is such a great thing to offer.”

c2c is honoured to be a part of this project and is very proud of all the children that took part. We would like to extend our warmest thanks all of the schools that undertook the project, as well as our partners at Primary Engineer.




About c2c

c2c is the award-winning train operator running services between Fenchurch Street and Shoeburyness, serving 26 stations in East London and South Essex.
Owned by Trenitalia, c2c is one of the UK’s most punctual and popular train operators and nearly 34 million journeys are made on its services every year.
Italian-based Trenitalia is one of Europe’s leading rail operators and the passenger rail arm of FS Italiane Group.
For more information email: mediaenquiries@c2crail.net

About Primary Engineer

Primary Engineer is an award-winning educational organisation that has developed an engineering curriculum that spans Early Years, Primary, Secondary and Further Education institutions.
Its core aims include; the development of children and young people through engagement with engineering, the promotion of engineering careers through inspiring programmes and competitions.
For more info, email: info@primaryengineer.com

c2cPrimaryEngineer (1) L-R: Children from Portway Primary School research and build their project

c2cPrimaryEngineer (2) L-R: Children at the event

c2cPrimaryEngineer (3) L-R: The Awards

c2cPrimaryEngineer (4) L-R: Children from Portway Primary School with ‘Starry Night.’

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