PASSENGERS travelling on buses in Preston no longer need to be plugged into their headphones – because radio is being installed.
Preston Bus has so far installed live radio on a handful of its fleet and if it proves to be a success they will roll it out to all its buses.
The plan is to keep passengers entertained – but bosses say they will take feedback seriously if passengers are against it.
Fiona Whalley, marketing manager for Preston Bus, explained: “We wanted to make passengers’ journeys a little more entertaining.
“We were looking at putting wifi on the buses but most of our journeys are fairly short so then we thought about putting the radio on the buses. I believe that about 25 years ago there were radios on the buses, so it is something that has happened before.
“We are trying it out for 12 months or so. They are going on our high spec Volvos.
“We have eight of those they are on the high frequency journeys like the number 23.
“By the end of this week all eight of these will be fitted with radios. We will be monitoring passenger feedback if it is positive we are looking at rolling the whole scheme across all the vehicles – it’s almost 100 vehicles.”
She added: “It is unusual for this area, it’s not something that they do in this area on other buses. On the whole passenger responses have been positive.
“We have had a few people saying they can’t stand the noise, but on the whole people it has been positive – people have even been asking if we can take requests.
“We will be looking at it very closely, in a month of two we will have a proper survey and see what people think more in depth and base how the scheme goes forward on that.”
Fiona added: “Even after we did the first bus we were getting feedback, it is noticeable.
“If there’s really bad feedback, if people don’t like it and it doesn’t work we will look to take it off. We will listen to what people say we will see.
“We did have one or complaints saying it was too loud so we have turned it down. We hope people will like it.”