Youngsters at Bilton Grange Primary School turned out to greet the first of eight new high-tech “Harrogate Electrics” single-deck buses, which has now been officially named in honour of their school as they celebrate their 100 year anniversary.
The sparkling red single-decker drew excited cheers from pupils as it swept silently up to the school gates to give youngsters a VIP preview of their feature-packed new bus, which now proudly carries the name of Bilton Grange Primary School.
Bilton Grange Primary School Deputy Head Richard Street said: “During our centenary year, we are thrilled to become the first school in Harrogate to have our name on one of these super new buses – the children are very much looking forward to seeing ‘their bus’ around the town from now on.
“It’s important that we show our pupils that catching the bus is a good choice for the environment, and never more so than now with these all-electric new buses arriving here in Harrogate. Everyone here is really proud to see the name of Bilton Grange Primary School on such a futuristic new bus.”
A joint investment of almost £4 million has brought eight of the new buses to the town, after operator The Harrogate Bus Company became the only bus firm in Yorkshire to win funding of £2.25 million from the Government’s Low Emission Bus Scheme.
Eight of the new vehicles are now in service on three urban routes in Harrogate, making the town the first in the UK to introduce the new buses.
Each of the new buses will be named after a local school in Harrogate, as The Harrogate Bus Company celebrates decades of proud service to the local community, dating back 112 years to 1906 when its predecessors’ buses first took to the town’s streets.
The Harrogate Bus Company’s CEO Alex Hornby said: “The children of Bilton Grange Primary School are our customers of the future, so there’s no better way to celebrate our pride in our community than to name the first of these futuristic new buses after their school during their 100th year.
“It’s very important to show the children that everyone can feel proud to be seen on one of these new buses – it’s never too soon to make the right travel choices for our environment, and we hope to see many of the Bilton Grange pupils, and their families, on the buses around town.
“We’re immensely proud to be the first in the UK to introduce these amazing new buses and at the same time, achieve our vision of creating Britain’s first Low Emission Bus Town here in Harrogate.”
The new buses have been designed to a bespoke specification, packed with customer-friendly features including ‘countdown to departure’ destination displays, audio-visual next stop announcements, USB at-seat power points, Wi-Fi and wireless mobile device charging.
The Harrogate Bus Company was one of only 13 organisations across the country, and the only one in Yorkshire, to bid successfully for finance from the Government’s Low Emission Bus Scheme, securing £2.25 million towards the cost of the new buses and supporting infrastructure.
Full information on services provided by The Harrogate Bus Company is available online at: http://www.harrogatebus.co.uk.