Monday 31 May 2021

Leicester Yutong E12's Enter Park & Ride Service

11 fully electric buses, powered by 100% renewable energy, entered service in Leicester on 11th May to bring zero-emission public transport to Leicester for the first time.

The Pelican website stated

It was a pleasure to deliver this contract of Yutong E12 zero emission buses to Leicester City Council. Our contract included vehicles, civils & infrastructure. The fleet will be operated by Roberts Travel Group on three park-and-ride services in Leicester. The distinctive green buses are equipped with on-board digital screens, USB charging points at every seat and provide free WiFi to passengers.

These 11 Yutongs will be joined by a further seven zero-emission buses in autumn 2022. Four will be introduced on the Hospital Hopper service, and three more will be used to launch a new, free city centre shuttle. Named the Green Line Bus Project, these vehicles are part of Leicester’s ambitious programme of investment in sustainable transport to help address the urgent climate emergency we are all facing.

Leicester’s successful bid to the Transforming Cities Fund (TCF) has funded most of the £7.1m required for 18 new electric buses. The TCF is also funding the £7m required for complementary works, such as bus priority measures, bus shelters, digital ticketing and real-time displays, as well as the creation of two new electric bus park & ride sites at Beaumont Leys and the General Hospital.

City Mayor Peter Soulsby said:

Thanks to our successful bid for government funding through the Transforming Cities Fund, we’ve been able to make this significant investment into sustainable public transport.

We know that if we are to persuade people to leave their cars outside the city centre, we need to offer them attractive and affordable travel alternatives.

These Greenline buses are clean, green and comfortable – and the more people use them, the more we can reduce congestion and improve air quality in the city.Roberts Travel Group has played a key role in the electrification project, installing a brand new charging station at its depot in Coalville in partnership with Zenobe Energy. The vehicles are charged overnight and operate all day on a single charge.
Managing director Jonathan Hunt enthused:

I am really pleased that Roberts Travel Group will be the first operator in Leicester to operate fully electric buses.

I am extremely proud that our loyal team of drivers will continue to drive the very best vehicles available, as we continue to invest in the latest technology for the people of Leicester.
We are extremely proud that despite the challenges brought on by COVID-19, the buses and their associated infrastructure have been delivered on time and on budget. That has come about through partnership working between all parties concerned.

Ian Downie, Head of Yutong Bus UK said

The vehicles were fully completed in the UK at the Pelican premises in Castleford, with driver and engineering training undertaken with the excellent team at Roberts. We are delighted to see these buses enter service in Leicester, improving air quality and the passenger experience while encouraging people to get out of their cars and onto public transport.

See a video of the new buses here