10 Oct 2016
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. 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.
Stagecoach unveiled the new fleet outside the Great Hall with a special ceremony featuring human statues and daring fire breathers. 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 shortlisting: “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. I am therefore delighted it has already been shortlisted for such an important award – less than a year since it was launched. 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.”
The winners will be announced at a London awards ceremony to be held on 23 November.