Skip to navigation

press releases

Select Topic:

Select Year:

Select Month:

Select Nation:

UK map

Network Rail volunteers take on team challenge for Barnardo’s

Release Date: 20 Mar 2017

A dedicated team of rail industry workers gathered with gardening tools for a one-day challenge to revitalise a Barnardo’s service that supports families in Harlseden, north west London.

The Network Rail team at work at the Freeman Family Centre

The group of seven volunteers from Network Rail travelled from as far away as Dover, bringing an array of power washers and scrubbing brushes to the Freeman Family Centre in Longstone Avenue to give the site a complete spring clean.

They jet-washed moss-covered paving, cleared mounds of fallen leaves, planted bulbs and flower pots, pruned trees, cleaned all the windows and shutters and updated family picnic area over the course of six hours on Thursday, March 9.

The Network Rail team at work at the Freeman Family Centre

The team, who work in the project management office overseeing the redevelopment of London Bridge station, as part of the Thameslink Programme, visited the centre following a vote by Network Rail employees across the UK to support Barnardo’s as their charity of choice for the next three years.

Hedviga David, Volunteer Coordinator at the Freeman Family Centre, said:

We’re so grateful to the Network Rail team for all their hard work. I really didn’t imagine it was going to look as good as it does - they’ve done a really good job.

Lewis Atherton, Network Rail Programme Manager on the London Bridge redevelopment project, said:

We very much enjoyed the day and achieved far more than we had thought possible. As a large project team working in the heart of the capital improving the infrastructure for passengers, the team recognise how important it is to work in partnership with the local community as we have enjoyed a good working relationship over the years. We are always happy to help in strengthening these ties as they present us with an opportunity to show we can do more together than simply improve the rail network.

Barnardo’s is currently developing plans for new services based at the Freeman Family Centre to support the local community.

The centre currently offers free classes in conversational English every Tuesday from 6.45pm to 7.45pm, IT every Tuesday from 6.30pm to 7.30pm, and English for families and their children every Wednesday from 10am to 11.30am.


Notes to editors

For more information please contact Dan Hodges on 07887 737 048 or email

Picture captions: The Network Rail team hard at work on behalf of families supported by Barnardo’s at the Freeman Family Centre in Harlesden

In October 2016, Barnardo’s was chosen by Network Rail’s employees as their ‘Charity of Choice’ until March 2019.

Network Rail is supporting Barnardo’s through fundraising, volunteering, gifts in kind and payroll giving to help the charity with their work to transform the lives of some of the UK’s most vulnerable children. Information about Barnardo’s work will also be displayed at eighteen mainline stations in England and Scotland, including all major stations in London.

Last year 248,000 children, young people and families were supported by Barnardo’s through 996 services across the UK, such as young carers, care leavers, foster carers and adoptive parents, training and skills or parenting classes. Visit to find out how you can get involved.

« Back to press releases