Tyne and Wear Metro has today launched a new digitally-driven summer campaign in a bid to increase awareness of places to visit around the region using the Metro system.
The ‘#42Ways’ campaign, which refers to the number of days in a typical six-week school holiday, aims to make families and visitors to the North East more aware of where Metro’s public transport system can take them, and the many attractions which can be enjoyed across Tyne and Wear.
Tyne and Wear Metro has also joined forces with a number of the 42 attractions across the region to offer special money-saving incentives on the production of a valid Metro ticket or pass.
The campaign, which is being rolled out across social media, including Twitter and Facebook, highlights some of the more unusual things that families can get involved in.
It will also be promoted through on-street activity in Newcastle, Tynemouth, South Shields and Sunderland, during which promotional staff will hand out ice-cream, leaflets as well as on-the-spot prizes to passers-by.
Sharon Kelly, Customer Service & Operations Director at DB Regio, which maintains and operates trains and stations on the Metro system, said: “We are embracing the digital age here at Metro and with more people using social media than ever before, it’s proving a great way to keep the communication flowing with our passengers on a daily basis. Our new campaign will also be linked to Metro’s website which will feature blogs on various places to visit around the network, as well as exclusive money-saving offers. This will make it easier for families to find out what’s going on all in one place and also make it a little easier on the purse-strings during the holidays.
“Our Metro stations are only a stone’s throw away from some great attractions, including the Discovery Museum in Newcastle, Blue Reef Aquarium in Tynemouth, Bill Quay Community Farm in Pelaw and the National Glass Centre in Sunderland.
“We have already seen huge regeneration work of the system which is still going on and hope everyone will benefit from this campaign as it is really a joint vision, working in partnership with people who want to see this region have a brighter future. We are continuously raising the bar to find more ways of helping our customers.”
Attractions around the region have welcomed the move.
Anna Etchells from Blue Reef Aquarium, said: “This campaign will certainly provide a real boost to everyone involved in tourism in the area. Social media works without a doubt and as attractions, we really will gain from something like this. It will put the system and all of the featured attractions in people’s minds and let them know how much is going on here.”
Craig Bankhead, Chief Executive of the Bill Quay Farm Association, also praised the initiative.
He said: “The #42Ways campaign is a brilliant idea for both Metro and all the attractions involved. Social media allows us to talk to our visitors directly, and as attractions, it’s also a great way of raising our profile.”
The campaign also has the backing of destination management and marketing organisation, the NewcastleGateshead Initiative.
Sarah Stewart, chief executive of NewcastleGateshead Initiative, said: “The Tyne & Wear Metro system is an excellent way to travel to many of our best loved visitor attractions and experiences across the area.
“From visiting museums and galleries in central NewcastleGateshead to enjoying a day at the beach in Tynemouth, South Shields or Sunderland – I’d certainly encourage local people, as well as visitors, to get out and explore what’s on the doorstep this summer.
“These days, social media plays a key role in helping us plan our leisure activities providing top tips and recommendations at our finger tips. The #42Ways campaign is a fantastic way to help everyone enjoy their summer right here in Tyne & Wear.”
Sunderland City Council Cabinet Member with Portfolio for Public Health, Wellness and Culture, Councillor John Kelly, said: “Our city and this region has a fantastic range of tourist attractions, and what better way to visit them than by using the Metro and public transport system.
“It’s a convenient, affordable and comfortable way for families and friends to travel together, and I hope the ‘#42Ways’ campaign will help make more people aware of both the visitor and transport options available to us all.
“With the summer holidays ahead we have some fantastic events and attractions here in Sunderland. I would encourage everyone to come along and visit The National Glass Centre, Monkwearmouth Station Museum, Sunderland Museum and Winter Gardens, our fantastic parks, beaches and of course next weekend sees the return of the biggest event in the region, the Sunderland International Airshow.”