Harrogate District Chamber of Commerce News


18 Oct 2019 by Jordan Kemp


Spa town’s innovative zero emission electric buses chosen to compete at industry-wide celebration of talent and innovation

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They’ve spearheaded Harrogate’s successful bid to become Britain’s first ever Low Emission Bus Town – and now the team behind the spa town’s ground-breaking electric buses at The Harrogate Bus Company is shortlisted to compete in the UK bus industry’s biggest awards celebration of excellence and innovation.

The UK Bus Awards recognise and reward the industry’s finest talents and are hotly contested by hundreds of bus operators across the country.

The Harrogate Bus Company’s parent company Transdev is shortlisted in three of the most keenly fought categories in this year’s Awards, with the team in Harrogate lining up to compete in the Environment category, which not only recognises the green credentials of bus services, but also improvements made to the overall environment in the communities they serve.

As part of its own plan to create Britain’s first Low Emission Bus Town in Harrogate, The Harrogate Bus Company launched eight all-electric buses onto three local routes in Harrogate in 2018, supported by a successful bid for £2.25m from the Government’s Low Emission Bus Scheme.

The company has also invested significantly in new and revitalised buses powered by low-emission Euro 6 engines – and formed partnerships with Harrogate’s businesses to offer free journeys to everyone on Sundays on three town routes served by the electric buses.

Promoted as ‘Sunday Freeway’, the move quickly proved a major success, generating a 70 per cent rise in customers travelling into Harrogate on Sundays within a single month.

In another first, electric powered and Yorkshire-built buses have also been introduced to the company’s service along Nidderdale, between Harrogate and Pateley Bridge.

Transdev CEO Alex Hornby said: “I’m absolutely thrilled to see our great Harrogate team being chosen to compete on the national stage for these prestigious awards, which recognise the great innovation, talent and pride driving our bus industry forward throughout the UK. We’re very proud of our success in Harrogate, and grateful to every single one of our amazing people for all they do to look after the growing number of customers choosing to travel with us.

“I’m also delighted to see our talented people deservedly lined up with the nation’s finest as they continue to deliver amazing customer service in Harrogate and right across the North. We’re earning a reputation as one of the UK’s most innovative and successful transport operators, and as ever, our customers are at the heart of everything we do.”

UK Bus Awards Chairman Mark Yexley said: “We’re delighted to see Transdev reach the finals in three categories. Buses play a vital role in helping to improve our environment, and it’s so good to see companies that are truly dedicated to improving air quality across our towns and cities.

“It’s an honour to be able to recognise businesses who consistently show a commitment to encourage more and more people to catch the bus. We wish the team at Transdev the very best of luck in the finals.”

Two more Transdev companies are also on the shortlist for the UK Bus Awards – its ground-breaking electric buses in Harrogate for the Environment Award, and its turnaround of the once-struggling North West bus firm Rosso into a thriving business delivering double digit increases in customers choosing to travel on its new and revitalised buses, in the Making Buses A Better Choice category.

Transdev’s teams will now head to London for the UK Bus Awards finals, to be held on Tuesday 19 November 2019.