TransPennine Express characters make the most of travelling by train
The 'Lovely Day' campaign was created by The&Partnership Manchester and directed by Catherine Prowse through Blinkink
13 February 2024
TransPennine Express has unveiled a campaign that sees charming characters embark on an action-packed day out, encouraging everyone to make the most of getting together.
Created by The&Partnership Manchester and directed by Catherine Prowse through Blinkink, the hero 30-second TV commercial starts at a train station and then follows a bucket and spade as they cram in a raft of activities to their day trip.
The duo are joined by more and more loveable characters along the way, including a set of bagpipes huffing and puffing on a hill walk, a paint pot and brush visiting an art gallery and a torch and battery enjoying a movie at the cinema.
Adam McGowan and Danny O’Keeffe, Associate Creative Directors, said: “We wanted to bring even more creativity and joy into train travel, showing how we can all make the most of getting together across the region. It’s a campaign that’s packed full of little laughs and smiles along the way.”
Spanning across TV, online video, outdoor, radio, press, social and digital, this is the second outing for the characters. They first hit screens back in 2019 to mark the launch of TransPennine Express' new Nova fleet.
McGowan and O’Keeffe continued: “We brought a new dimension to these characters, making them miniature and using stop-motion – which is a real labour of love. The attention to detail and level of craft involved is unbelievable, Catherine and her team at Blinkink did such a great job of bringing it all to life.”
Bill Withers’ classic ‘Lovely Day’ provides an aptly bright and rhythmic soundtrack to an adventure peppered with subtle visual gags like the spade throwing some popcorn in the cinema, and the paint pot pondering over a sculpture akin to Rodin’s ‘Thinker’ that all feels a bit too familiar.
The film comes to an end where it started, back at the station as the protagonists bid farewell and bucket boards the train. The stage is then suitably set for the only piece of voiceover in the commercial, Make the most of getting together, followed by the brand name and endline.
Darren Higgins, Commercial Director at TransPennine Express, added: "We're proud to unveil our new campaign centred around how we help bring people together - providing lovely days out to beautiful beaches, big cities, and country escapes.
"We wanted to demonstrate that every meeting can have a little extra meaning when you take a train with TransPennine Express."
Having transferred to DOHL ownership in May last year, TransPennine Express recently released its blueprint to make journeys better which includes its aim to inspire and encourage days out across the TPE network.
Creative Director: Andy Bunday
Associate Creative Director: Danny O’Keeffe
Associate Creative Director: Adam McGowan
Senior Account Director: Lauren Sanders
Senior Account Manager: Ben Court
Account Manager: Virginia Saul
Agency Producer: Nicki Casey
Production Company: Blinkink
Director: Catherine Prowse
Executive Producer: Bart Yates
Executive Producer: Josef Byrne
Head of Production: Alex Halley
Producer: Sami Goddard
Production Manager: Sandy Liddle
Runner: Anna Argiros
Background Design: Xavier Ren
Storyboard Artist: Victoria Budgett
Production Designer: Brin Frost
Puppet Build: Andy Spradbery
Set & Prop Build: Anita Bruvere, Areeya Bass, Beattie Hartley, Ben Cote, Connor Chung, Emma Niemis, Kat Simpson, Rosie Tonkin
DOP: George Warren
1st AC: Toby Goodyear
Gaffer & Moco Op: Max Halstead
Spark: Pearce Crowley
Animators: Anthony Farquuhar-Smith, Tobias Fouracre & Steve Warne
Rigger: Andy Spradbery
Puppet Maintenance: Cat Johnston
Studio Manager: Daisy Garside
CG: Furry Tail Dragon Ltd
CG Team: Andy Antoniou, Raffaele Grande, Laimis Petrauskas, Stanislav Shcherbakov
Comp Lead: Andrew Khosravani
Comp: Lina Larsen, Tom Fisher, John Malcolm Moore
Grade: George K
Sound: Paul Harrison @ Picture House
Shot @ Clapham Road Studios
Head of Marketing: Caroline Anchor
Marketing Manager: Lilli Baranski