Darlington Shines at UK Bus Awards
Darlington has scooped a gold medal at this year’s UK bus awards. Darlington Borough Council won the prestigious local authority bus project of the year award for its work with Arriva North East in delivering better bus services in the town.
The council won recognition for its success in securing £8 million of government funding for delivering improvements to the towns bus network including bus priority schemes and improved bus stops. The council has also secured additional government funding for the town’s main bus operator, Arriva to help them deliver new, modern buses on key routes in the town equipped with next stop announcement systems. This funding has complimented Arriva’s own extensive £7 million investment programme which has seen the introduction of new and refurbished vehicles on key routes in the town, including Arriva’s sub-brands Sapphire, MAX and Frequenta.
The council also won a silver medal at the awards for its work in leading an innovative Department for Transport funded direct marketing campaign across the Tees Valley and County Durham offering people the chance to try their improved local bus service for free, this campaign involved working across 6 local authorities and with Arriva, Stagecoach and Go North East.
Councillor Nick Wallis, the cabinet member for Leisure and the Local Environment, “This is great news for Darlington and recognition that despite the tough economic climate, the council is still able to secure additional resources to help deliver first class public transport in the borough. The council values the role buses play in supporting the town’s local economy and making the town a good place to live and work. We work closely with Arriva North East, our main operator and are delighted that they have invested so much in their business here, it represents a real vote of confidence in the town.”
Nick Knox, Managing Director of Arriva North East said. “We are extremely proud of our track record of partnership working with Darlington Borough Council. Both Arriva and the council have worked very hard to improve the town’s bus network. We are now seeing the fruits of that investment with record levels of passenger satisfaction and over 9/10 buses running on time. We look forward to working closely with the council in the future to secure even more improvements for Darlington bus passengers.”
The council and Arriva North East have been working together to deliver better public transport for a number of years in order to ensure that as the towns economy expands it does not suffer the same problems of traffic congestion that blight other towns and cities across the country.