Arriva invests in more new buses for Maidstone

Posted: 1 May 2013 | Arriva | No comments yet

Arriva has invested another £360,000 in new buses for one of its services in the Maidstone area…

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Arriva has invested another £360,000 in new buses for one of its services in the Maidstone area, following close on the heels of the £3million fleet of diesel-electric hybrids that entered service in March, and six Mercedes-Benz buses purchased last September.

The three new buses are running on the 333 service which links Maidstone town centre and Vinters Park with Detling, Sittingbourne and Faversham, bringing new standards of comfort to the route that provides an important link in the county’s transport network.

Built in Yorkshire by the Optare company, one of the UK’s leading bus builders, the eye-catching ‘Versa’ buses are, like all new buses, of the easy-access design with a low-level entrance and no steps in the front half inside.

They also have ramps to assist wheelchair users boarding and alighting, a wheelchair and buggy bay inside and the engines are built to the latest stringent regulations governing exhaust emissions.

Arriva’s Regional Managing Director, Heath Williams, said “I am delighted that we have been able to make another substantial investment in more new, fully-accessible and environmentally-friendly buses for our services in the Maidstone area.

“These three buses will give our customers on the 333 a quieter and more comfortable ride and they carry graphics to advertise the service to those along the route who may not be aware of the service we offer.

“With the true costs of running a car often overlooked, the bus can offer a cost-effective option for some journeys and I hope that people who have not used the bus for a while will give it a try for some of their journeys, in turn helping to reduce pollution and congestion in and around Maidstone.

“We are constantly updating our fleet and, in spite of the economic climate we have so far this year invested nearly £8million in forty-seven new buses for our services in Kent and across the Thames Estuary in South Essex, this being a testament to our confidence in the future of public transport in the area.”

Arriva recently took out of service its last buses based at its Maidstone depot that still had steps at the entrance and a small number remaining at other depots will be replaced by more fully-accessible buses over the next few months as the company heads towards having a 100% ‘easy access’ fleet.

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