Harrogate’s leading bus operator, The Harrogate Bus Company, is trialling the latest zero emission electric technology on one of its most popular bus routes, as it prepares for future investment beyond the pandemic.
The first high-tech battery powered bus to take part in trials on the forward-thinking bus firm’s busy route 1 linking Harrogate and Knaresborough was unveiled today (Thursday 8 October 2020) to mark Clean Air Day, the UK’s annual campaign event promoting positive action to cut emissions and protect the environment.
The Harrogate Bus Company is now looking to build on its positive experience of running electric buses in service, after became the first operator in Britain to introduce ‘opportunity charged’, pioneering Harrogate Electrics buses in 2018. At that time, the Starbeck-based firm became the only operator in Yorkshire to win funding of £2.25 million from the Government to create Britain’s first Low Emission Bus Town.
Its bright red Harrogate Electrics buses are now firmly established as a familiar sight on the spa town’s streets – and the eight electric buses have together covered more than 400,000 miles – the equivalent of going around the world over 16 times.
The Harrogate Bus Company’s CEO Alex Hornby said: “Today we’re celebrating the success of our class-leading Harrogate Electrics buses in covering over 400,000 zero emission miles by looking ahead to future options for electric power on one of our most popular route, the 1 between Harrogate, Starbeck and Knaresborough.
“With a bus up to every seven minutes, it’s a vitally important link for thousands of our customers and an ideal place to put the industry’s newest electric technology to the test.
“This exciting, seven-day trial sees us running a British-built single deck bus, manufactured by Alexander Dennis in partnership with the Chinese firm BYD, the world’s largest manufacturer of rechargeable batteries and new energy vehicles. The design combines the best in British bus manufacturing skills with the very latest world-class battery technology.
“We continue to look to the long-term future for our company and our industry, strong in the belief that our buses will play a vitally important role in boosting the wider economy in Harrogate, Yorkshire and the north of England for decades to come.”
Full details of the trial route 1 and all other services run by The Harrogate Bus Company are available online at: https://www.transdevbus.co.uk/harrogate and on its free to download ‘Transdev Go’ mobile app.