In Blackpool, Lancashire, Council owned bus company Blackpool Transport has launched 25 of the new Alexander Dennis Enviro400 City buses.
From Alexander Dennis
The promenade at Blackpool was awash with new buses on Sunday 9th April when Blackpool Transport officially launched 25 new Enviro400 City buses, manufactured by Alexander Dennis Limited (ADL).
These buses are the latest investment by the company in the last 3 years and at a cost of over £5m they significantly bolster the existing fleet.
Blackpool Transport stunned the general public by carrying out a unique celebration of their latest investment, parading all 25 of the buses in convoy along the world famous Blackpool Tramway. The buses were officially unveiled on the Blackpool Festival Headland later in the day, with 15 of the buses on show for the general public to enjoy.
The launch was officially recognised by Councillor Christine Wright cutting the ribbon, with speeches from Jane Cole (Managing Director), Cllr Christine Wright (Chair, Blackpool Transport) and Richard Matthews (Sales Director, Retail Bus, ADL).
Jane Cole, Managing Director for Blackpool Transport comments; “The delivery of these 25 vehicles, which are supplied by British manufacturer Alexander Dennis, fulfils my commitment to boost our fleet year on year. My vision is to ensure no bus in Blackpool is older than 5 years by 2020, with 54 buses out of a fleet of 140 now finished in the high grade Palladium specification we are well on our way to delivering on our promises to our customers.
Our unique partnership with Alexander Dennis has been pivotal in getting to where we are today. Working with the UK’s leading bus manufacturer provides the opportunity for us to continuously improve and invest in the latest technology available and ensure we are constantly improving the customer experience.”
Richard Matthews, of ADL says: “We are extremely proud to be a part of this journey which is radically changing the transport landscape in Blackpool. What we have achieved so far is testament to like-minded teams of people getting connected to take a vision and mould it into reality.
We are committed to supplying Blackpool Transport with the most modern, fuel efficient, environmentally friendly and customer-focussed buses available in the market today and look forward to continuing our partnership in the coming years.”
The 25 new vehicles are now in service and can be seen operating predominantly on route 11 & 14, two of Blackpool Transport’s most popular services.
According to the Blackpool Transport fleet list, there are 35 of these Enviro400 City buses owned by Blackpool Transport.
The design of the Enviro400 City is based on the New Routemaster bus, such as the glazed staircase and also designs from the Enviro200 MMC.
Back in London, Arriva and CT Plus uses the hybrid version which is the Enviro400H City. The buses are currently on London Bus routes 26, 78, 133, 333 and 388. They are also on night routes N26 and N133.
Next up I can bring you the news that independent operator D&E Coaches has just purchased two Wrightbus StreetLites to add to their fleet.
Family owned and run D&E Coaches of Inverness has taken delivery of two Wrightbus StreetLite buses as the latest additions to its fleet.
D&E Coaches has recently undergone a rapid expansion having successfully been awarded 12 new service contracts and a large number of school routes from Highland Council. This growth has led to D&E taking on 40 new employees since January 2017 to handle the increased business.
The new StreetLites, purchased by D&E to meet their growing business requirements, are 9.5m wheel forward vehicles with seating for 37 passengers and fitted seatbelts included. Both feature Cummins Euro 5 engines, Voith D82.5E gearboxes and also include Wrightbus’ unique Micro Hybrid technology.
From mid April 2017, D&E’s new StreetLites will be deployed on the Foyer’s route around the famous Scottish tourist attraction of Loch Ness during the day, while the other vehicle will operate on the Black Isle route around Inverness.
In addition, the buses will also be providing some evening services and it is anticipated that each vehicle will be completing a minimum of 16 hours of operation per day.
Donald Mathieson, Managing Director of D&E Coaches, said: “We felt the StreetLite met our requirements perfectly and chose them specifically for their fuel consumption performance and passenger capacity levels.
“We also had a very tight lead time and Wrightbus were able to supply the buses in line with our schedule. Following our recent purchase of an existing operator’s fleet, we acquired a StreetLite. We have been impressed with the performance and build quality of the vehicle, so had no hesitation in going for these two new StreetLites and look forward to seeing them go into service.”
John Hartley, National Accounts Manager for Wrightbus, said: “It’s great to see two of our StreetLites going into service with this highly successful and vibrant Scottish operator.
“The vehicles will be operating on some important tourist routes for D&E and we’re confident they will be pleased with the fuel consumption performance and high standard of passenger comfort. We look forward to a long and successful relationship with D&E.”
Now one of the largest operators in Scotland, D&E Coaches was originally established 21 years ago by Donald Mathieson. At the time the company was run from Mr Mathieson’s house and had just one vehicle, a minibus, in its fleet. Today D&E has more than 110 employees and is a true family business being run by Donald alongside his son and two daughters.