British Transport Police win award for “Speak Up, Interrupt” campaign

BRITISH Transport Police’s “Speak Up, Interrupt” campaign and the Railway Guardian app have been awarded the ‘Making Spaces Safer’ award by the National Police Chiefs’ Council and College of Policing in their recognition event for police officers, staff and volunteers who are working to tackle violence against women and girls.

The force also received three regional award wins at the event, which took place on 6 September 2023:

BTP’s use of technology to identify perpetrators on the railway network was recognised in the ‘Behaviour change in perpetrators’ category

The Railway Guardian app for the ‘Technology and its use in tackling VAWG’ category

Detective Chief Superintendent Paul Furnell for the ‘Leadership’ category

The “Speak Up, Interrupt” campaign encourages passengers, especially men, to be active bystanders and report incidents of sexual harassment to British Transport Police. It includes conversation prompts that passengers can safely use to intervene if they witness sexual harassment.

The Railway Guardian App was launched by British Transport Police in July 2022, following extensive consultation and the creation of a working group of around 30 third-sector organisations. The first national police safety app, developed by Imabi, provides a one-stop-shop for safer travel across England, Scotland and Wales, using simple, easy to navigate technology to report incidents on the move. There have been almost 50,000 downloads since it launched.

The recognition event was developed and judged jointly by police forces and representatives from charities including SafeLives, Suzy Lamplugh Trust and Karma Nirvana, alongside the Domestic Abuse Commissioner for England and Wales, Nicole Jacobs, and police staff associations. Over 140 entries were received which were initially judged regionally by police and third sector panels, before being put in front of a national panel who decided the 13 overall winners.

Detective Chief Superintendent Paul Furnell said “As someone who has been tackling this for many years now and is passionate to ensure that we achieve change, I have never worked with a team so driven and determined to make a difference. It’s fantastic to see the force recognised for the work that we are doing in this area. However, most importantly, we are protecting women and girls from abusers.”

British Transport Police welcome the rail industry and other organisations adopting the “Speak Up, Interrupt” campaign. To request a campaign toolkit, email

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