The channel – developed in partnership with the Mental Health Foundation – is a world first
Virgin Trains has become the first travel company in the world to launch a dedicated ‘mindfulness’ channel to promote positive mental health.
It has worked alongside the Mental Health Foundation to develop the channel, which is available only on its complementary on-board entertainment system, ‘BEAM’, and features exclusive meditative videos and real-time footage of the East and West Coast routes.
The new ‘Be Mindful’ channel has been launched to help mark World Mental Health Day 2016 (Monday, 10 October) and showcases the UK’s first real-time video of a train journey, taking a cue from the Scandinavian trend for ‘slow television’.
It also features six specially shot videos of calming locations from across the UK including St Margaret’s Loch, Lake Windermere, the Yorkshire Dales and Loch Lomond.
Virgin Trains says the mindfulness channel has been curated to inspire a more relaxed and positive state of mind for travellers across its entire routes.
The real-time, slow films have been filmed from the driver’s cab, running at over four hours in each direction.
The East Coast route runs between London King’s Cross and Edinburgh Waverley, while the West Coast route films run between London Euston and Glasgow Central.
The six meditative films focus on areas of outstanding natural beauty as chosen by Virgin Trains staff, and will aid passengers to relax and unwind, whether they’re on a short journey or travelling the whole route. The six locations are St Margaret’s Loch, the Yorkshire Dales and Berwick-Upon-Tweed on its East Coast route, and Alderley Edge, Lake Windermere and Loch Lomond across the West Coast.
Patrick McCall, co-chairman for Virgin Trains, said: “We know a lot of our customers lead busy and stressful lives, so we wanted to launch an exclusive channel to make their journeys an even more positive and relaxed experience.
“Here at Virgin Trains we pride ourselves on continuously improving our customers’ on-board experience and that includes their positive mental health. Teaming up with the Mental Health Foundation, we’ve worked hard to curate a fantastic range of mindful content for our customers to enjoy.”
Mark Rowland, director of fundraising and communications for th eMental Health Foundation, said: “We’re delighted to be working with Virgin Trains to launch the world’s first mindfulness channel on-board. A train journey can be a great time for reflection – a perfect excuse to dedicate some time to yourself, disconnecting from the pressures of modern life and taking a step towards becoming more mindful.
“We want this to be the first step in equipping Virgin Trains’ customers with the tools to manage their mental health and wellbeing successfully.”