Top National Bus Driver 2014

The late Chris Moyes, in whose memory this award is presented

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The Chris Moyes Memorial Award

 

This Award is presented to the bus driver who has best demonstrated excellent performance from the customer perspective in the 12 month period to the end of May 2014.

To win the title of Top National Bus Driver, entrants need to go that extra mile to provide the customer’s ideal: a driver who is friendly, helpful, conscientious, mindful of passengers’ comfort and well-being – in short, a true professional and worthy ambassador for the job.

Les Roome from Nottingham City TransportGold Award

Les Roome, Nottingham City Transport

Les has two great loves in his life - Nottingham Forest Football Club and driving for Nottingham City Transport. Before joining NCT in 2007, he had various jobs, but none of them gave him the passion and satisfaction he felt while watching his beloved team. Now, Les channels that same level of enthusiasm and commitment into his working life and his passengers are delighted with the results. Priding himself on the high level of care he continually shows his passengers, Les always waits when he sees someone running for the bus, regularly helping with pushchairs and shopping and lowering the floor or ramp to help anyone in need, not just for wheelchairs. His down-to-earth, hardworking and customer-friendly character - together with some excellent mystery traveller scores - made Les a worthy winner.

Paul Prosser from National ExpressSilver Award

Paul Prosser, National Express West Midlands

Since joining National Express West Midlands' Pensett depot in May 2012, Paul has established himself as a true customer champion - from spreading the festive spirit by singing carols to putting patients and visitors on his route to the hospital at ease. Although working on high frequency urban services, his customers still recognise him and for one of the 17 plaudits he has received is for "the best customer service I have ever received on public transport". Considered a credit to the business and a technically brilliant driver by National Express, Paul has won the National Express UK Bus Driver of the Year award and impressed the judges with his many customer commendations and excellent track record.

Bronze Award

Clare Akehurst from First ManchesterClare Akehurst, First Manchester

While Clare is relatively new to her role as bus driver, having joined the Oldham depot in January last year, she has demonstrated exemplary driving standards and is already displaying the signs of a first class driver and ambassador for First. Clare received her first praise from a happy customer only five months into the job and her managers are struck by the passion, patience and genuine kindness with which she interacts with passengers, as well as by her enthusiasm for driving and thirst for improvement. Recently appointed to the position of relief service performance supervisor, Clare's high standards make her a worthy finalist.

Finalist

Jason Annear from First West of EnglandJaison Annear, First West of England

Over the six years Jaison has worked for First, he has shone out as a model employee. Based at First's Hengrove depot, he most often works on services 8 and 9 and has maintained an untarnished employee record. In two years Jaison has generated commendations from no less than 17 satisfied customers, while his professionalism and genuinely helpful attitude is valued by his manager who considers Jaison a role model, not just for First but for all bus drivers across the profession. It is no surprise to hear that in April 2013 he was named the region's Superstar of the month. A UK Bus Awards finalist for the second year running, Jaison impressed the judges with his excellent record.

Finalist

Malcolm Burton from First South YorkshireMalcolm Burton, First South Yorkshire

Malcolm is valued as a superb driver who is well liked by colleagues and customers and who goes about his job in an unassuming manner. Based at First's Doncaster depot after joining the group in 2001, Malcolm's biggest strength is making his customers feel welcome, in particular those who have difficulties whether they have sight problems, are disabled or are trying to manoeuvre a pushchair onto the bus. Malcolm has received regular praise from customers for his care, patience and friendliness, not least for waiting for elderly passengers to board the bus, and the judges felt that his numerous commendations made him a natural candidate.

Finalist

Ian Greenfield from Arriva MidlandsIan Greenfield, Arriva Midlands

Ian is a regular driver on the Oxon Park and Ride site in Shrewsbury where he is based, having joined Arriva Midlands in 1996. Changing a customer's punctured tyre so they would not be stranded at the site is one example of how Ian has exceeded the remit of his role to help customers in difficulty. Coupled with his excellent customer relation skills, Ian is considered a fine ambassador not only for Arriva but particularly for the Shrewsbury depot and he has been rewarded with Made a Difference Awards (MAD) at a local level and as Arriva UK's top MAD driver in 2014. The judges agreed that Ian is a true ambassador for the industry.

Finalist

Stephen Reed who works for Stagecoach in West ScotlandStephen Reed, Stagecoach West Scotland

A man of many talents, Stephen has had a varied career from serving in the Armed Forces to pig farming in Northumberland. He joined Stagecoach in 2006 working on local services within Troon and Ayr before moving to working backshift on the X77 express service between Ayr and Glasgow via Prestwick Airport. Faced with many Polish customers unable to speak English and finding it difficult to ask for a bus ticket, Stephen proved his ability to go beyond the call of duty by teaching himself Polish by listening to self-help CDs on his commute to work. His customer service skills and determined self-improvement impressed the judges.

Finalist

Justyna Wawrzcyka from Arriva North EastJustyna Wawrzycka, Arriva North East

Justyna's positivity is infectious and she carries out everything she does at Arriva's Newcastle depot with huge amounts of enthusiasm and passion. Considered a shining example of how a smile and friendly demeanour can massively impact on the customers' overall experience, Arriva is very proud of her achievements and in 2012 she was awarded Newcomer of the Year at Arriva North East's Made a Difference (MAD) Awards. Justyna was made an Arriva Angel at her depot - a select group of bus drivers who promote outstanding customer service - despite only joining the group in 2011 and impressed the judges with her approach to her work.

Who could be nominated?

Any licensed PCV driver in full-time employment on registered local bus services outside London, who had been in continuous employment for the 12 months ended 31 May 2014.

… and by whom?

We welcomed nominations from employers, bus passengers or bus user groups, or other organisations. Self-nomination was appropriate for this category.

Criteria and Entry Requirements

Where drivers are nominated for this award, their employers will be contacted, and asked to:

  • Endorse the nomination and supply further information about the employee to us
  • Obtain the nominee's consent to their name being put forward for the award.

Entrants will be assessed by the judges on their technical and professional skill. Evidence of this will be required from their employers and could include:

  • The nominee’s accident record
  • Number and duration of safe driving awards won by the nominee
  • Technical and professional skills, as evidenced by such items as internal driver assessment reports or marks achieved in driving competitions
  • Disciplinary record
  • Public Commendations

In addition, short-listed entrants for the Top National Bus Driver award will be subject to mystery traveller checks

The winner of the Top National Bus Driver prize will be the individual who best represents the whole range of professional and customer care skills required for this important and highly demanding job.