Harrogate's pioneering electric buses win UK national environment award

30 May 2019

Spa town’s trailblazing buses win top award alongside some of the world’s best-known brands.

The team behind Harrogate’s amazing electric buses are celebrating today after the pioneering project won a national environment award, sitting alongside huge household names including Warner Bros, Deloitte and ITV.

The Harrogate Electrics buses have revolutionised travel in the spa town – and now, they’ve been named as winners of the prestigious Environment Award in the UK Better Society Awards, presented in London on 23 May.

(L-R front) Simon Bolland, General Manager Alan French, Mark Wilkinson; (L-R back) Frank Paul, Andy Senior, Andrew Turnbull, Chris Long

The Harrogate Bus Company, which introduced the electric buses as a key part of its project to create the UK’s first Low Emissions Bus Town in Harrogate, was recognised amongst other big winners on the night including ITV, Warner Brothers, O2, Morrison’s, Deutsche Bank and more.

The news is the latest chapter in a success story which began when the pioneering all-electric buses were introduced to three local routes in Harrogate.

The Harrogate Bus Company’s CEO Alex Hornby said: “I’m absolutely delighted that the company and the team have been recognised for this industry leading project. This award only serves to endorse the success and prominence that the Harrogate Electrics have achieved.    

“Our Harrogate Electrics buses have already gained positive recognition within the transport industry, but to win such a prestigious award against strong competition from some of the biggest companies in Europe is truly amazing.

“We’re immensely proud to be the first in the UK to introduce these amazing new buses, and at the same time, to achieve our vision of creating Britain’s first Low Emission Bus Town here in Harrogate.”

The Harrogate Bus Company was one of only 13 organisations across the country, and the only one in Yorkshire, to bid successfully for finance from the Government’s Low Emission Bus Scheme, securing £2.25 million towards the cost of the new electric buses and supporting infrastructure.

The buses have been designed to a bespoke specification, packed with customer-friendly features including ‘countdown to departure’ destination displays, audio-visual next stop announcements, USB at-seat power points, Wi-Fi and wireless mobile device charging.

Each of the new buses is named after a local school in Harrogate, as The Harrogate Bus Company celebrates decades of proud service to the local community, dating back 112 years to 1906 when its predecessors’ buses first took to the town’s streets.

The Harrogate Electrics buses are free for everyone to use on Sundays, thanks to a unique partnership with The Spirit of Harrogate, owners of the world-famous Slingsby Gin brand.

The Harrogate Bus Company’s win in the UK Better Society Awards comes only a month after it was named Best Large Company of the Year in the Harrogate Advertiser’s Excellence in Business Awards. The firm was also named as the UK’s Small and Medium Bus Operator of the Year in the bus industry’s Route One Awards.

Full details of all The Harrogate Bus Company’s services are available online at: http://www.harrogatebus.co.uk and from the information kiosk at Harrogate Bus Station. Its free-to-download “Transdev Go” smartphone app also provides instant access to bus times and bargain fare deals.