Participation People collaborated with Gloucestershire Community Rail Partnership (GCRP) to support a group of Young Researchers (YRs) in producing evidence-informed resources aimed at promoting sustainable travel among young people. The project involved designing a survey, collecting and analysing data, and generating key messages to encourage young people to travel more sustainably in Gloucestershire.



The Young Researchers initially analysed a preliminary focus group conducted by GCRP and then developed their own survey to gain insights into young people’s travel habits and attitudes towards sustainability. A total of 586 young people aged between 14-25 participated in the survey. The Young Researchers analysed the data and discovered several important findings.


  1. Safety as a Decision Factor: The YRs found that safety played a significant role in young people’s decision-making regarding their mode of travel, which was a noteworthy finding beyond their initial expectations.
  2. Age and Rail Usage: Older young people (above 18) were more likely to use trains for travel compared to younger individuals.
  3. Perception of Rail Cost: Young people perceived rail travel to be more expensive than it actually was, indicating a potential barrier to their usage.
  4. Proximity to Local Station: Most respondents lived near their local station, suggesting that a simple nudge or encouragement could motivate them to use it more frequently.

Based on the data analysis and their understanding of Gloucestershire, the Young Researchers presented their findings to a group of six young people at a Bootcamp in April 2023. 

Utilising the data, the participants at the Bootcamp developed key messages to promote sustainable travel and public transport usage among young people in Gloucestershire. The outputs included:

  • 3 posters suitable for display in stations, bus stops, schools, or on social media.
  • 3 social media graphics tailored for Instagram, targeting the platforms young people commonly use.
  • 2 videos designed as Instagram reels, featuring engaging captions and fun editing.

These resources, a selection of which can be found in this report, are intended for use by GCRP to encourage sustainable rail travel and public transport usage among young people in Gloucestershire.


“Our experience working with Participation People has been fantastic. From the initial conversations about our youth project to facilitating surveys and workshops. Everything they do is youth led and the team clearly have a dedication to young people and making sure their voices are heard.” 

Helen Buckle – Head of Marketing & Communications, GCRP