Arriva invests another £2 million in new buses for Southend, Castle Point and Rochford
Arriva has invested £2million in another sixteen brand-new single-deck buses to upgrade one of its routes running between Shoeburyness, Southend and Rayleigh.
The latest 13-plate buses follow less than eighteen months after Arriva’s previous big investment in the area when twelve new buses totalling £1.8million were bought to relaunch the popular Service 9 that runs via Southend Airport and the seafront on its way between Shoeburyness and Rayleigh.
Each of the eye-catching new buses costs £128,000 and they will bring a new look and higher standards of comfort to the newly-branded Service 1 that links Shoeburyness and Rayleigh via Bournes Green, Southchurch, central Southend, Westcliff, Leigh-on-Sea, Hadleigh and Thundersley.
The prominent graphics for the ONE coupled with pictorial local designs on the rears of the buses will help draw attention to the service which runs up to every 12 minutes during the main part of the day on Mondays to Saturdays.
Some of the new buses also carry names such as ‘Pride of Southend’ and ‘Pride of Hadleigh’.
Built in Yorkshire by Optare, one of the UK’s leading bus builders, the 44-seat Versas are fully accessible and have engines built to meet the latest stringent European regulations governing exhaust emissions.
Arriva’s Regional Managing Director, Heath Williams, said “In the current economic climate I am delighted that we are able to invest once again in new, fully-accessible and environmentally-friendly buses for our Southend-based operation.
“They will give a more comfortable ride to our customers on the ONE and will help to bring about improved air quality in the Boroughs of Southend-on-Sea and Castle Point, and in Rochford District.
“These new buses, along with an influx of fully-refurbished buses from elsewhere within the Arriva group are helping to reduce the age profile of our Southend-based fleet and the nearly £4million investment that we have made in new and refurbished buses over the past eighteen months is testament to our confidence in the future of public transport in the South East Essex area.
”I hope that people using their cars without realising the true running costs will see the sleek new buses and realise that we offer a frequent service with handy stops in the town centres and that by using the bus for at least some of their local journeys they will help to reduce both pollution and congestion across the area.”
Arriva’s new Versa buses were launched at a civic event held at the company’s Southend-on-Sea Depot on Friday 19th April and went into service the following day.