London Bus Garage

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This is the award which benchmarks the performance of bus garages in London, and rewards the best with a cash prize to be used on facilities to benefit the team which delivers the best service on a day-to-day basis.

The Winner

Some of the team at London General's Merton GarageMerton, Go-Ahead London

The staff at Merton are all committed to providing a safe, quality and reliable service for their customers. There is a strong sense of pride in getting the job done to a high standard as demonstrated by the recognition that driver Stephen Appiah received at the 2011 UK Bus Awards when highly commended in the Top London Bus Driver category.

Merton continually works to improve its standards by talking with members of the local community and identifying areas for improvement. Forums are held to enable drivers to recognise the specific needs of others, including the disabled and elderly. Teamwork and a positive work ethic are the main factors which have enabled Merton Garage to be so successful.

Noting Merton’s impressive performance figures, the judges observed that managers, supervisors, drivers and engineers at the garage demonstrated that they were all pulling together with the result that they are providing the best service that they possibly can for their customers.

Runner Up

Some of the team at CricklewoodCricklewood, Metroline

Cricklewood is a dynamic garage that aims to lead the way in terms of performance thanks to its state-of-the-art environmentally friendly technology, driver facilities, in-house training and recruitment suite and award winning CCTV department.  The garage has staff dedicated to support and engage with the local community and CSR work, and innovative programmes to promote safety awareness.

A massive team effort has taken place so that all staff know and understand their role, thus the whole team pulls in the same direction. This has generated a consistently excellent level of performance since the re-construction of the garage.  

The main factors driving Cricklewood’s achievements include a good working environment, team role awareness and communication of results to give feedback on performance.

Highly Commended

Stagecoach London's Barking GarargeBarking, Stagecoach London

Barking’s depot operations management and their team recognise that reliable bus services are key to providing good customer service and running a successful business. The low level of complaints against mileage operated reflects customer satisfaction with the service and staff, exceeding expectations.

Performance of all routes operated from Barking depot has improved substantially thanks to the efforts and enthusiasm of the Route Performance Team and the drivers’ eagerness to make their route the best. Barking has helped with a number of local initiatives, working with schools to help with transport projects and the effects of anti social behaviour on public transport and with local disability groups to provide them with the skills to use public transport independently.

The Orpington team from MetrobusOrpington, Metrobus

Orpington is one the largest garages in London, operating 28 routes through a mix of inner and outer London boroughs. Over 9 million miles a year are operated, equating to 2.79% of the London Buses network. Metrobus invests heavily to ensure its bus fleet remains highly presentable. Performance achievements are driven by the team’s dedication and giving priority to operating a full service on all routes.

The targets Orpington sets itself are in excess of TfL's standards and are regularly exceeded despite problems arising from traffic, congestion, roadworks, adverse weather etc. Use of the iBus route control system has been expanded, route champions have been appointed on each rota and a blog system introduced to keep the team involved and informed of latest developments and operational issues. This all helps to maintain Orpington’s high performance levels.

Work goes on at Go-Ahead's garage at Putney, part of London GeneralPutney, Go-Ahead London

Putney’s staff utilisation is the envy of many garages: it was the first to virtually eliminate spare staff, thus substantially reducing costs but also demonstrating confidence in their reliability to all drivers. The entire garage, comprising cleaning, controlling, engineering and operational teams and first line platform staff, have all worked very hard to exceed already tight targets consistently and to drive forward together, as a solid unit, setting even higher standards.

Putney sponsors and performs charity work for the mentally and physically disadvantaged in order for them to have an easier understanding of transport and its benefits. To avoid lost mileage through bad attendance and poor punctuality Putney has created family-friendly rotas and conditions that help staff reconcile domestic and work commitments,  thus benefiting  both the business and its customers.

Who could be nominated?

This award was open to garages that operate buses on contract to London Bus Services Ltd. Performance and monitoring data was used by TfL London Buses to compile a shortlist of garages reaching high levels of recorded performance, which included:

  • Driver Quality Monitoring data
  • Wheelchair ramp operational audit data
  • Customer Satisfaction Survey and Mystery Traveller Survey results
  • Lost Mileage
  • Quality of Service Indicators
  • Engineering standards
  • Levels of public comments.

Each short listed garage was then challenged to submit its own assessment of its achievements, emphasising its impact on passenger service, staff well-being and the communities served by reference to specified issues.

Group Travel World

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The UK Bus Awards scheme is organised by The Bus Industry Awards Limited
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