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On the rails

Jackie Macadam reports on the work of the Railway Mission and recently formed ‘Railway Pastors’.

IT’S happened to us all at some point.

‘Train delayed due to incident on the line.’

It’s a cause of nuisance and perhaps a source of irritation as we have to call people and say we’ll be late or make other arrangements.

But for a small group of railway workers, that’s the time they swing into action – and their job is not entirely what you might expect.

“Sometimes that ‘incident’ is a suicide – or an accident on the line – it means someone has been killed, and that can mean not just annoyance for people whose journeys have been afected, but terrible trauma for the driver who has witnessed the accident and sometimes even passengers on the train when it happened.

“The Railway Mission are there for all afected,” says Ruth McBean. “We work with the station managers, staf and guards who are likely to be irst on the scene of an accident or a suicide and we work with any passengers who might be witnesses or upset by the incident.”

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About Life and Work

Inside this month EASTER SPECIAL Reflection from the Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland FROM HOMELESSNESS TO PRIMUS Focus on the leader of the Scottish Episcopal Church ON THE RAILS The work of the Railway Chaplaincy and Railway Pastors