22 Sep 2014
Tom Grant, based at the Stagecoach Midlands Stratford-Upon-Avon depot, came in the top ten in the 48th National Final of the Bus Driver of the Year competition held last weekend (13th/14th September) in Blackpool. A record number of 121 bus drivers from 49 UK bus companies took part this year, having won through their area heats.
In the final, the drivers’ skills came under the microscope as they guided their buses through a series of 10 challenging tests that included positioning at bus stops and judging widths and lengths, and driving in traffic, all under the scrutiny of the marshals who deducted points for the slightest of errors. This was followed by a theory test designed to check they have professional levels of knowledge when it comes to the Highway Code and driving competency.
Tom Grant, who came ninth in the competition, told us “It was the first time I have ever done anything like this and I was shocked to do so well, and to win an award for coming second in the 20-strong group of Stagecoach bus drivers from all around the UK who took part in the Final.” He received his award from the Traffic Commissioner for the North East of England Richard Turfitt.
Daniel Wilton from Stagecoach Manchester finished fourth overall in the Final and was the highest placed Stagecoach driver.
All the participating bus drivers needed to have a clean driving licence, with no blameworthy accidents in the past 12 month period and no customer complaints against their name.
Sally King, Stratford-Upon-Avon Depot Manager said “We are very proud of Tom for doing so well. Being in the top 10 of bus drivers throughout the country is a massive achievement and we are delighted to have him working for us.”
Photo: Tom Grant receiving his award from Richard Turfitt, Traffic Commissioner for the North East of England.