British Signage Language Displays Added To Digital Signage Mix At Scotland’s Busiest Rail Stations

April 15, 2024 by Dave Haynes

Mass transport environments have long used digital signage technology to relay important travel information to people rushing to catch planes, trains and buses, but the focus has mainly been on re-packaging real time data like gate and platform assignments as visual text presentations on screens. Now a UK rail system has started installing customer information screens at rail stations that are focused on using British Sign Language (BSL) to make stations more accessible for deaf passengers.

Network Rail teamed up with the Scottish branch of the British Deaf Association (BDA) to think through and develop screens now in place at the two busiest rail hubs in Scotland,  Edinburgh Waverley and Glasgow Central.

The stations, says PR, are the first in the UK to have BSL on the main boards and sub boards as part of an ongoing investment to make Scotland’s Railway more accessible for deaf passengers. If hearing is the only challenge for people who are deaf, they can of course see and read departures boards, but one of the problems this can help solve are things like live announcements for things like platform or gate changes that might be reflected on conventional information displays around stations.

The signs have a library of different scenarios – presumably pre-recorded BSL-centered messages – that are triggered to screens. I’d imagine with time that AI video generation could do these on the fly, down to really specific information.

Throughout each day the latest information on trains from Network Rail’s control room will be converted to BSL on the displays in real time for passengers.

Currently, the boards only show train information, however, they will soon be able to show emergency and security messages, as well as information about works that may impact journeys.

This Linkedin video below shows the screens in use and gets details from several people, including a guy named Colin with a delightful, near-impenetrable Weegie accent (a lot of Scottish DNA in me, but that hasn’t helped me much when I’ve been in Scotland!).

  1. anthony thompson says:

    Hi Dave,

    Thanks for posting this and your positive feedback, my company LB Foster are the company that developed this software to enable BSL Departures at Station, we also supplied the Digital Screens also. Happy to have a chat about this if regard.



Leave a comment