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Out now: Issue 251 of Passenger Transport

Out now: Issue 251 of Passenger Transport

Issue 251 of Passenger Transport is published on October 15. Contents include:     LEAD STORY Could driver shortage break viability of buses? National media coverage has focused on the impact that driver shortages are having on haulage, but some bus operators fear long term consequences   NEWS EXTRA: Driver shortages Concerns mount over growing...
Concerns mount over growing driver shortage

Concerns mount over growing driver shortage

The bus industry is short of 4,000 drivers and there are fears this could do untold damage to the future commercial viability of the sector   The Confederation of Passenger Transport estimates there is a national shortage of 4,000 bus drivers   BY ANDREW GARNETT There are deepening concerns in the bus industry about the...
New autonomous mass transit system launches

New autonomous mass transit system launches

World’s first operational system will open in 2025 at the National Railway Museum in Shildon, but UK-based firm plans global transport revolution   A visualisation of ‘floc®’ technology   A driverless, zero-emission mass transit technology – comprising autonomous electric “pods” capable of traveling on both road and rail – launched this week by UK-start up...
Party conferences and a crunch-point

Party conferences and a crunch-point

  The big issues were debated at this year’s lively party conferences, but there are huge questions to be answered on transport policy   A vision of Greater Manchester’s fully integrated network, championed by mayor Andy Burnham   It felt like the fallow Covid period has reinvigorated party conferences as institutions that previously felt like...
The final nail in the franchising coffin?

The final nail in the franchising coffin?

  Govia being stripped of Southeastern should bring the curtain down on franchising and hasten the introduction of concessions   A Southeastern 465 Unit at Gravesend   Shall we just knock it on the head now? I mean, franchising. With the demise of Southeastern, it’s tempting just to expedite the move towards National Rail Concessions...
NEG/Stagecoach merger talks: The end of an era

NEG/Stagecoach merger talks: The end of an era

Stagecoach and National Express are in merger talks. The new combined group would operate one third of Britain’s buses outside of London     Stagecoach is synonymous with Britain’s privatised public transport sector. But with that industry now evolving into one where the public sector will play a much greater role, the group looks set...
We need radical actions, not hot air

We need radical actions, not hot air

  Lurid warnings and distant targets won’t avert climate change. Transport is a key battleground and we desperately need a plan   Boris Johnson last week told the assembly of world leaders at the United Nations in New York that COP26 had to be a “turning point for humanity”   I don’t know about you,...
Branding must not suffer during hiatus

Branding must not suffer during hiatus

  GB Railways may be two or three years away but it’s coming so many TOCs have given up on their brand. This should worry us all   The BR logo would appear to resonate with Joe and Joanna Public   I’ve been living the dream this last month and have travelled on every TOC...
Scheduler of the Year Award judges named

Scheduler of the Year Award judges named

Four-strong judging panel, including previous winner, will decide winner of the 2021 Joe Wood Scheduler of the Year, sponsored by CitySwift   Richard Sherratt: Joe Wood Scheduler of the Year 2020   The winner of last year’s inaugural Joe Wood Scheduler of the Year Award is among the judges for the 2021 prize. Trentbarton’s Richard...
We must get better to lure motorists

We must get better to lure motorists

  The sad truth is that too many bus services are at best tolerable. We need to make them desirable if we are to achieve modal shift   A welcoming sight?   Travelling on a number of local bus services in the south of England with some industry friends recently, I was, quite frankly, very...
‘Operators should not rush back to normal’

‘Operators should not rush back to normal’

New research by Transport Focus concludes that operators need to keep up additional Covid-19 measures and communications to reassure passengers   Wearing a face mask is the key safety measure for more nervous passengers   Although restrictions have eased and passenger volumes continue to recover, public transport operators have been warned not to “rush back...
Barbara Castle showed how to get things done

Barbara Castle showed how to get things done

  Harold Wilson said he wanted a ‘tiger in the tank’ of his transport policy when he appointed Barbara Castle – and that’s what he got   Barbara Castle showed us that you need to go out there and relentlessly sell radical change   On September 8th more than 350 people took part in the first...