01 Dec 2016
Stagecoach South were awarded Silver in the Award for Marketing Initiative of the Year, at the UK Bus Awards 2016, for its Kings City Bus network in Winchester.
The Award for Marketing Initiative of the Year recognises and rewards promotional ideas and campaigns that have created an impact through strong brand, improved the image of bus travel and helped to change public perception.
Launched in October 2015, at a cost of £2.5m and inspired by King Alfred the Great, 'King's City' was the new name and new look for Winchester's local bus network.
The Marketing Initiative was launched to encourage commuters, businesses and organisations who normally travel by car, to switch to public transport for part, or all, of their journey within The City of Winchester.
A new fleet of 18 Euro6 vehicles were introduced and included free wifi, USB charging points and next stop announcements. The buses were finished in a distinctive and stylish claret and champagne livery.
To coincide with the new image, the bus company also introduced easy to read timetables and maps, online travel planning and better rail connections at Winchester station.
New evening services were also introduced and the nightrider ticket, giving unlimited travel within the city and surrounding area after 7pm was slashed to just £2.
As part of the launch, a team from Stagecoach gave out information and a goody bag to the community and provided information packs to local employers and business, including retailers, restaurateurs and information centres.
Edward Hodgson, Managing Director of Stagecoach South, said of the award “I am delighted that our Kings City brand and network has received such great recognition. A lot of hard work has been carried out behind the scenes with the emphasis on the improvement and delivery of a great bus service for the Winchester community".
Edward continues: “The Kings City network has proven to be very popular with our customers, since its introduction. It is also testament to the incredibly dedicated drivers, engineers as well as depot and support staff, who consistently strive to deliver excellence for our customers on a day to day basis.”
Meanwhile several other Stagecoach businesses across the UK were recognised across a range of award categories at the 21st annual awards ceremony with gold, silver and bronze awards being handed out.
Stagecoach UK Bus Managing Director Robert Montgomery said: “I am pleased that so many of our companies and individual employees have been rewarded for their hard work and excellence.
“Since last year’s awards, we have introduced a number of digital improvements for customers including the launch of our new website and smartphone app, the delivery of real-time information across our UK network, the launch of mobile ticketing and the planned roll-out of contactless payments. We are continuing to work hard with our partners to make bus travel even better and to fight for stronger action to be taken on the growing problem of congestion to help attract even more people to our greener, smarter services.”
The UK Bus Awards celebrate best practice, high quality staff and outstanding standards of customer service in the industry. The ceremony featured, as guest of honour, Norman Baker - former transport minister and Chair of Bus Users UK which are part of Bus Industry Awards Ltd, a representative body of bus operators, local authorities, the trade press, the Campaign for Better Transport and the Chartered Institute of Transport who nominate and select the UK Bus Awards.
Stagecoach Group had 12 finalists at this years awards. Full details are available at www.ukbusawards.org.uk