A student from the UK-based Chelsea College of Arts, University of the Arts London (UAL) has won Heathrow Express’ ‘mind the gap’ design competition.

Hayley Wrighton's winning design overcame competition from 21 other students and is planned to be implemented at London Paddington station.

As part of the competition, Wrighton created a bespoke solution by applying abstract design skills to a real-life situation.

"Heathrow Express customers from all over the world should be instinctively drawn to its centre.”

A target-style image is projected onto the platform to ensure passengers safely board trains.

Incorporating Heathrow Express branding, the design includes a way of projecting the image without affecting normal rail operations.

Wrighton said: “I’ve genuinely enjoyed the process of researching and understanding people’s interaction with my design, which I hope goes on to achieve its aim of intriguing people enough to think about the gap.

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“By projecting this image, which is universal and simple, Heathrow Express customers from all over the world should be instinctively drawn to its centre.”

During the design process, research revealed that people chose to step on the centre of the target image, which means the image can be placed to encourage people to step to a safe place.

The design was selected by a panel of rail, safety and design experts including representatives from Heathrow Airport, Heathrow Express and UAL.

Heathrow Express panel member and operations director Keith Harding said: "We've been blown away by the creativity of the students, who, with a skill set very different to me and my railway colleagues, have shone a new light on how we can tackle a long standing industry challenge.”


Image: Winning design created by Chelsea College of Arts, UAL student Hayley Wrighton. Photo: courtesy of Heathrow Express.