Friday 25 November 2011

Volvo Hybrids for Bakers of Biddulph

Three Volvo B5RLH Hybrids with Wrightbus Eclipse Gemini 2 bodywork have entered service with Staffordshire operator Bakers of Biddulph on the premier route X1 between Hanley, Stoke-on-Trent and Stafford Beaconside.
The route was started in 2004 at the request of Staffordshire University and, over time, has developed into a partnership including London Midland Trains as a rail replacement service. Initially, the service operated with midi buses and, over the last 2 years, has grown into full single deck vehicles and many times last year was “bursting at the seams” leading to the decision to introduce double deck vehicles.
The Volvo hybrids use the parallel system of hybrid drive which allows the buses to stand silently at bus stops and traffic lights and then move away almost silently using battery power. Green Bus funding grants have been used to bridge the gap between the cost of a standard diesel bus. The buses are already giving fuel savings of 20% and it is hoped that when the vehicles are run in they will achieve 25 - 30% savings. Leather high backed seats have been specified together with the fitment of WiFi.

David Gambles