Warrington named Bus Operator of the Year
There were almost 200 entries across 17 categories, and UK Bus Awards chairman John Owen told the audience at the awards ceremony – which included transport minister Paul Clark – that the high standard of entries showed the bus industry was providing top-quality services. “A commercial bus industry can and does deliver,” he said. “Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.
“Whatever the legislative framework, significant modal shift won’t be achieved without freedom of movement for buses. Congestion is the common enemy – but it won’t be resolved without partnership, whatever the degree of regulation. Regulation is not an alternative to partnership.”
Clark said: “The government is committed to improving services and increasing the number of people travelling by bus. It is encouraging to see the great work going on to help ease congestion and prove that good public transport is a viable, green alternative to the car.”
Among small operators, Norfolk Green secured the Winning New Customers Award, while Western Greyhound was once again named Independent Operator of the Year, with Konectbus in second place. These were the only two short-listed operators for this award – in contrast to the Shire Operator of the Year where seven operators were named. Similarly there were only two names on the City Operator short list – winner Transdev Keighley & District and runner-up Lothian Buses.
Express Coach Operator of the Year was Oxford Bus Company for its Airline service, with Stagecoach West Scotland in second place. Among the big groups, Stagecoach won the Bus in the Countryside awards for a service in Oxfordshire, while Go-Ahead, as well as securing the express coach award for its Oxford subsidiary, saw Go North East win Bus Marketing Campaign of the Year.
There were a number of awards for front-line staff, with Bus Driver of the Year winner Leon Wells of First Eastern Counties securing the Chris Moyes Memorial Award for customer service. Arriva’s Beddington Farm depot was awarded London Bus Garage of the Year.