Sheffield Bus Partnership celebrates first year of success


SHEFFIELD Bus Partnership is celebrating a year of significant success as it marks its one year anniversary of operation.

The ground-breaking agreement between South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive (SYPTE), Sheffield City Council, First South Yorkshire, Stagecoach in Sheffield and Sheffield Community Transport, has taken huge strides to improve the city’s buses since the Partnership’s launch in October 2012.

Working together, the partners have increased the number of people using Sheffield’s buses for the first time in a decade, with an impressive 2.75 million (8.9%) more fare-paying passengers.

To celebrate Sheffield Bus Partnership’s one year anniversary, street teams will be handing out cupcakes across Sheffield city centre on Thursday 5 and Friday 6 December.

Sheffield Bus Partnership’s key achievements since launch include:

2.75 million more fare-paying passengers using Sheffield’s buses
Network improvements benefitting around 50,000 bus passengers
At least 60% of adult fare paying customers enjoying cost savings and lower fares
Bus punctuality has improved month on month to 90.9% and reliability to 98.8%
Significantly improved customer satisfaction by up to 45% and a 25% reduction in complaints
Investment of £13.5 million in newer, more environmentally friendly buses
Winner of two prestigious UK Bus Awards, and shortlisted for six industry awards

In its first year of operation alone, the Partnership has made Sheffield’s bus network more simple, flexible and convenient, has coordinated timetables and provided tickets that can be used on buses or trams, added more services on many routes with fewer changes to timetables, and invested in more new buses.

Labelled a ‘historic’ development by then Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Transport, Norman Baker MP, the ambitious nature of the Partnership and the speed with which it has delivered results has gained recognition from Government and secured an exclusive Better Bus Area grant of £18.3 million to further improve Sheffield’s bus offer.

Sheffield Bus Partnership will start work in January 2014 to upgrade bus stops, provide real-time information, and make improvements for all traffic at key junctions. Further investment in the city’s bus fleet will also reduce emissions and help to prevent problems with vehicles.

SYPTE Deputy Interim Director General, David Young, said: “It has been a year of huge progress for Sheffield Bus Partnership. The Partnership’s commitment to understand and respond to customer needs continues to improve the quality of Sheffield’s bus network, and benefit the environment by encouraging more people to travel by bus.

“The achievements that Sheffield Bus Partnership has delivered in its first year of operation are testament to the dedication of all partners involved in the scheme, and is providing a platform for further improvements.”

Cllr Leigh Bramall, Sheffield City Council’s Cabinet Member for Business, Skills and Development, said: “The Partnership has made some real progress in its first year and has shown the benefits of joint working. There is still a lot more work to do, but the first year has seen some significant strides towards improving the public transport system.

“We will continue to work hard to encourage even more people to use public transport by improving their travelling experiences, whilst tackling the demanding challenges to enhance the quality of the local environment.”

Paul Lynch, Managing Director for Stagecoach in Sheffield, said: “Sheffield Bus Partnership has delivered some fantastic results in its first year and shown a real
commitment to providing the best bus offer possible for the people of Sheffield. All of this plays a major part in helping us to deliver one of the best public transport networks in the country, recognised in our recent triumph in the Making Buses a Better Choice category at the UK Bus Awards”.

Ben Gilligan, Managing Director for First in South Yorkshire, said: “The success of the partnership is great news for the people of Sheffield and shows that working together both bus operators and local authorities can deliver a partnership agreement which ultimately benefits customers and the local communities.”

Ian Jenkinson, General Manager for Sheffield Community Transport, said: “The Partnership is committed to providing the best possible offer for passengers and it is very encouraging to see that reliability and punctuality has improved so much in the first year. That’s what our passengers deserve and can expect.”

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