Rainbow logos are being displayed on the Tyne and Wear Metro’s iconic station cubes to show solidarity with the nation’s fight against coronavirus.
The yellow and black cubes – a unique part of everyday life in North East England – depict the now familiar rainbow design, along with the all-important ‘stay safe’ message.
Nexus, the public body which owns and manages Metro, said it wanted the symbol to be a show of support for key workers and the wider communities it serves ahead of more people starting to travel on the system when some shops and school re-open from Monday, 15 June.
Customer Services Director, Huw Lewis, said: “The Metro cubes are a unique and an iconic part of life in our region, making them then perfect places to showcase the rainbow logo as the nation recovers from the coronavirus pandemic.
“Metro is at the heart of the community so it’s only right that we demonstrate our solidarity with the national fight against Covid-19. It also sends a clear message for people to ensure that they stay safe as lockdown measures start to ease.
“The Metro system is there for when people need to use it. Customers need to make sure they follow the new rules when making journeys. Follow floor and wall markings to maintain social distancing, travel outside peak periods, wear a face covering, and considering cycling, walking, or the car as alternative modes of travel, if that is possible.”
Five Metro cubes have been given a makeover. They are located at Monument and Central Station in the centre of Newcastle, South Gosforth Metro Station in suburban Newcastle, Heworth Interchange in Gateshead, and Park Lane Interchange in Sunderland.
Metro station entrances and train carriages are also getting rainbow logos.
During the coronavirus pandemic, the rainbow has become a symbol of support for people wanting to show solidarity with NHS and care workers on the front line.
The trend was reportedly started by a nurse who wanted to create “a sign of hope” for patients and staff in hospitals across the country.
Since then, parents and children have been displaying their art on windows, doors and roads across the UK.