The Award for Services to the Bus Industry recognises a significant and sustained contribution to the success of the industry by a key individual.
The individual may be working in any bus-related environment and at any level but will have gone consistently beyond the call of normal duty to improve and promote the bus industry for its users or the wider community.
Nominations may be made by operators, transport authorities authorities and other bodies involved in the planning and provision of local bus services, and other organisations working with the industry or on behalf of its users.
Winner: Michael Steward, First London
Michael Steward has earned the profound respect of all who have worked with him throughout his 43-year career, all of which has been devoted to planning and delivering excellent customer focused bus services.
It is a career that has seen large-scale changes, from the ‘reshaping’ plan that brought in one person operation and new ticketing systems, to the conversion of busy inner central London bus routes from Routemaster operation to high frequency midibuses.
The overnight change in route structure, vehicles and customer information was extremely high profile and could not afford to fail. Michael led his planning team to ensure no item was underestimated and the result was a seamless transition which showed the industry what could be done.
Throughout his career, Michael has shown a dedication to his job ‘well beyond the normal call of duty’. Thanks to his good natured temperament and helpfulness in leading and developing new staff to continue this legacy, Michael’s dedication to his work, combined with his exceptional ability in service planning will have a lasting positive impact on bus operations in London for the future.
In the 80s, Michael worked as a consultant in Calcutta for London Transport International, rationalising local bus and tram services and culminating in a presentation to the Chief Minister of West Bengal, before returning to London to work on the high-frequency midibus programme. High-frequency small bus services have since gone on to deliver user growth throughout the UK, paving the way for bringing back larger buses providing higher capacities, but still on high frequencies.
Although Michael has made buses his career he also played a crucial role in Tramtrack Croydon Ltd’s win of the Croydon Tramlink PFI concession and CentreWest’s win of the contract to operate the tram services.
For all these reasons and many more, the board and management committee of UK Bus Awards wish to pay tribute to Michael Steward’s productive and intense working life in his 60th birthday year.