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Train company helps thousands of art fans flock to Eastbourne for the Turner Prize 2023

Southern Rail has partnered with Towner Eastbourne to celebrate the prestigious Turner Prize coming to Sussex for the first time.


To help drum up excitement for the exhibition, a meet and great team has been set up at Eastbourne station, welcoming visitors from all over the country who have travelled by train to catch a glimpse of this year’s unique entries.


With Towner situated just 15 minutes away from the station, Southern is helping to transport thousands of art fans in and out of the area.


Phoebe Ociepka-Tearle is one of the volunteers working at Eastbourne station. She helps to direct people arriving by train to the gallery, whilst enticing other members of public to visit the exhibition, which is clearly working as nearly 18,000 people have visited the gallery since the exhibition opened on 28 September.

Phoebe, 19, applied as soon as she saw the call-out for volunteers at Eastbourne station.


“Being part of the meet and greet team for a few days a week means I can help raise awareness of the Turner Prize and encourage passengers to see this amazing artwork as part of their trip. I think it’s great the exhibition is so accessible; I’ve met people who have travelled from across Sussex and beyond using the train and they can easily walk to the gallery once they arrive in Eastbourne.”


Culture seekers can catch a glimpse of the four shortlisted exhibitions, created by Jesse Darling, Ghislaine Leung, Rory Pilgrim and Barbara Walker, at Towner Eastbourne until Sunday 14 April 2024. The winner of the Turner Prize is set to be announced on Tuesday 5 December in Eastbourne’s Winter Garden.


Jenny Saunders, Customer Services Director for Southern, said: “It’s amazing to have such a well-known art exhibition on our network. Although the Turner Prize is often open to visitors in London, having it in Sussex for the first time ever makes it accessible to people living in the south of England. As the only train operator in the area, we’re excited to bring new people to Eastbourne to discover all the area has to offer.”


The Turner Prize is the world’s leading prize for contemporary art and is the centrepiece of ‘Towner 100’ – a year-long celebration of arts and culture across Eastbourne and Sussex marking the centenary of Towner Eastbourne.


Joe Hill, Director, Towner Eastbourne, said: “We are thrilled to partner with Southern Rail, who are providing a safe, easy and environmentally friendly route to Towner which is hosting the Turner Prize 2023 as the centrepiece of Towner 100, the gallery’s centenary year. The Turner Prize exhibitions, alongside the associated programme Eastbourne ALIVE, offers a unique opportunity for our town to promote engagement with contemporary art and showcase all it has to offer to visitors."


Those making the journey to Sussex can make the most of their visit discovering Southern’s Coastal Culture Trail, featuring galleries in Bexhill and Hastings while exploring the landscapes of the South Downs National Park, award-winning vineyards, local shops and more.


To find out more and to book your trip to Eastbourne, visit Train Tickets | Book Train Tickets Online | Buy Train Tickets | Southern Railway.


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