03 May 2012

First is Second (in the world!)

Perhaps more than any other of the big groups First Group seem to find themselves facing criticism from all quarters. Some of this is justified and it is clear that the group are struggling more than the other groups at the moment. Certainly you can compare First Groups cutting back of operations with Go Ahead who seem to be buying a new operator each month at the moment.

Its not all doom though:

FirstGroup, the UK's biggest bus operator, was named the second best in the world for social, environmental and governance, while the Go-Ahead Group was the 10th best globally.

 The Independent

FirstGroup, Britain's biggest bus operator with 20 per cent of services nationwide, came second worldwide and top among British businesses despite the environmental problems associated with transport. The firm – which has improved the fuel efficiency of its UK bus fleet and installed solar panels and harvested rainwater – was "demonstrating significant improvements in its environmental performance, thereby mitigating risks associated with its environmental impact," Eiris said.

A spokesman for FirstGroup, which also operates the First Great Western rail franchise, said: "We take our need to reduce carbon seriously."

The Go-Ahead Group, another bus company, which operates the Southern, Southeastern and Gatwick Express rail franchises, was praised for generating more than 90 per cent of its turnover from sustainable public transport.

I often wonder at how and why these reports are put together and what meaningful comparisons can be made between a bus company and an internet giant like Google, but all the same it is good to see First Group being applauded like this.

Related Links

    Elsewhere on the net

  • In spite of the ASA admonishing First Group over its environmental credentials during its autumn TV campaign—unfairly, perhaps—First has topped the charts for being the UK’s most responsible environmental, social and well-governed company. Omnibuses
  • Following our deafening return from Penzance, I managed to create a temporary fix to muffle the blowing exhaust manifold 270KTA
  • Needless to say, the station is miles from its eponymous verdure. Just above the "ee" of Croxleygreen is a white blob which is Croxley (un-green) station! Public Transport Experience
  • Uno have just put into service five articulated Mercedes Benz Citaros on their shuttle service serving the University Of Hertfordshire Andys Bus Blog

      1. I noticed yesterday that every hopper window on the top deck of the new Olympic Enviro I was sitting had cracked around the handles! Seems like the glass can't put up with having the handles mounted directly upon them.

        It's a little bit embarrassing for First to have a fleet of brand new and high profile buses that'll all need most of their windows replaced under warranty before the games start!

      2. Perhaps it's good that they are on the road before the Olympics have started.

        I don't see that it's embarrassing for First since this is clearly a manufacturing defect, perhaps it would be had it happened when being used for the Olympics.

      3. Remind me again where the Optare Excels have just been transfered from... Glasgow wasn't it? 485 miles away.

        Surely the constant swapping of vehicles from area to area is having an extreme environmental impact, and from a users point of veiw, pointless.

        If First stopped swapping, they could be number 1!

      4. I've just found and uncrumpled my ticket and the offending vehicle was SN12AEJ.

        @Anon: To both you and me it's obvious it's a cock-up at ADL, but Joe Public will usually only see as far as the company name plastered on the side of the thing, and then make their own ill-informed conclusions..

      5. if first concentrated on running a bus company properly more than their enviromental attributes then they probably wouldnt be in the mess they r in now!

      6. Thanks for all the comments guys!

        I am not sure that the transfer of buses from Glasgow is that big a deal in the scheme of things. If buses were constantly moving between Scotland and Devon then maybe, but there are not that many transfers usually going on. The passengers dont care where the bus has come from as long as it turns up!

      7. the number plate details are not on the tickets??
        so i can assume "nick" is one of the disgruntled first drivers that flood this blog

      8. No - Nick isnt a First bus driver. The ticket would show the fleet number - he has added the reg himself.


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