Do you travel on Northern trains regularly anywhere between Leeds and Manchester Victoria (the Calder Valley route), or in the Bolton area? Do you have an Android phone?

Do you want to help to improve passenger wellbeing on rail journeys and receive a free wearable activity tracker as a thank-you?

Northern are collaborating with other innovative organisations on a government funded research project which utilises wearable technology to monitor passenger heartrate and wellbeing. The aim of the project is to make rail travel more reliable, safe and efficient in order to improve the overall Northern experience.

We are looking for volunteers to be involved in the research starting in April 2018 running until the Autumn. All you have to do is wear the activity tracker (which you get to keep and use!) and tell us how you feel as you travel with Northern using our ‘Rail Life’ app.

Volunteer for Rail Life

Thank you for expressing an interest in joining the Rail Life Wellbeing study, unfortunately applications for new volunteers has closed. If you wish to find out more information, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


More details

What does this involve?

What is expected of me?

  • Wear the wearable device (on your journey and off your journey)
  • Download the Rail life mobile app to log your experience on your Northern journey (you will receive technical support and briefing on how to do this)
  • At various points in the research period (for a few weeks at a time between April and November) you will be prompted to input your experience at least once on your journey each day (you are free to input as many or as few times as practically possible during the trial period!)

What’s in it for me?

  • Keep the wearable! These are worth up to £120
  • Be a part of an innovative research study – be a Citizen Scientist and help Northern better understand their passengers experience to improve your overall experience!
  • In the longer term, insights from the trial will be used to:
    • Better inform Northern service offerings to improve customer experience and identify future improvement works needed!
    • Provide more timely and personalised customer advice,
    • Respond more quickly to stressful situations as they arise

Am I eligible?

To be eligible you must be: a regular traveller on the Calder Valley line or in the Bolton area, an Android phone user and 18+

Will my data be secure?

Absolutely yes – all of your data will be stored securely, and the way we handle this will comply with new data protection laws (GDPR) due to be introduced in May. Full details of the process of collecting and storage of data will be given at both the registration and consent to take part in the study phase.

Further questions?

More details are provided in the Frequently Asked Questions and, if you have any further questions about taking part in this, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Frequently asked questions

General | What is expected of me | What data will be collected and how it will be used


Additional resources

  Technical FAQs