Alstom | Widnes Technology Centre


not “just another train refurb” video

Project leads at Astom’s traincare facility in Widnes, Cheshire came to us with a challenge.  The Widnes facility is a large, flexible technology centre and workshop space just east of Liverpool. At the time of writing, among other contracts, the site is repainting the last dozen or so trains of the Class 390 Pendolino fleet.  Our task was to come up with a video concept that would mark and show-off this process as well as highlight the adaptability of the facility.

We have worked with Alstom and their C. 390s before, documenting the ‘H4 Overhaul‘ in Manchester. Project manager, Jonathan Morris, was keen that we produced something ‘a little bit different’ from the norm.  Our concept is a fast-paced, tightly edited video.  It is a snap-shot of the people and processes involved.


Building on working relationships

During pre-production, we submitted three different video concepts.  The storyboard for the chosen idea helps visualise the eventual video and provided another opportunity for discussing the video’s targets.

A visit to site ahead of scheduled filming also allowed us to fine-tune filming plans.  Each (eleven or nine car) train is received, prepared and repainted in a two-week period.  It was vital that we captured key activities across the fortnight.  Ultimately, five filming visits spread across the fourteen day programme gave us what we needed.

A mix of time lapse and stabilised ‘slo-mo’ shots make up from the look of the video. Our filming approach was a fairly standard one-person crew on each shift.  All Alstom staff on site were very accommodating.  As a result, the whole shoot was very smooth.

Submitting the initial draft and subsequent revision to the Widnes team got the video to a point of near completion. At that point, Alstom Head office (Paris) helped steer the video to completion.


Fresh, clean trains deserve a fresh, clean video

We made better, more efficient use of our filming and editing budget by taking more time at the start of the project to discuss what the video needed to be.

The video product is punchy, fun, attention grabbing and sells what the Widnes facility does.  Commissioning a video that ‘stands out’ from the crowd is proof that there is a demand for alternative editing styles and visuals in an often overtly corporate industry.  As a result, the creative freedom given to us by Jonathan and his team allowed us to use the iconic Pendolino trains as a character, taking us on a journey through the workshop.

Capturing the Pendolino repainting project was an important element to promote our modernisation capabilities. Other project videos of this nature have often been fully time-lapsed and whilst good in their own right, we wanted something different.

This was well received during our initial engagement with Inside Out Group and several options were presented to meet our budget. Further considerations and creative discussions gave me the confidence that our vision for the video had been fully understood.

The filming itself was well structured and undertaken with enthusiasm and creativity, often taking the opportunity to capture elements of the production process which have added a unique aspect to the video’s look and feel. The video has been well received with many complementary comments.

Overall this has exceeded our expectations and we look forward to working with InsideOut Group on future projects.”

Jonathan Morris – Senior Operations Manager  |  Alstom UK



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