Councillor Phil Bateman said, “Today I received a Business Briefing Note from National Express. It was a very interesting document, and I have published it here. If you rely on safe effective and efficient public transport. You will be keen to see and read the information published here. So please take your time and read it. I was delighted to be informed that National Express has been named the “World’s safest public transport operator.”

I want to congratulate them on this accolade.That is an immense piece of news, you cannot underestimate the importance of safety, when you are carrying the huge numbers of passengers that National Express has. This news from the company will do much to build confidence in the company standards and safety procedures, amongst public transport users. Well done National Express”

David Bradford Managing Director of National Express West Midlands writes “Its Hello and welcome to the final business brief of 2019,Thank you to everyone for helping make it such an incredible year.We’ve been named the world’s safest public transport operator. We’re growing patronage across the West Midlands and carrying more happy passengers; while elsewhere in the country bus use is declining.We’ve welcomed 600 new colleagues, saving jobs and vital services by launching NEAT. And we’re investing heavily in our people to make the best even better.
And 2020 is shaping up to be even better still. We’ll enter the new year with many fares frozen for a third year running (compare to Manchester which has its fifth year of inflation-busting increases); backed up by our biggest-ever marketing campaign.We’re taking our Alliance with TfWM to a new level: helping tackle congestion and introducing new bus priority.And our first electric buses are nearing completion, and will be on the streets of Solihull from February. This optimistic mood was present at our Master Driver award ceremony yesterday, when 71 drivers received their coveted blue ties to recognise their exceptional driving and customer service standards. We were delighted to welcome two distinguished visitors to the event. Nick Denton is the Traffic Commissioner for the West Midlands. He is one of just eight TCs covering the UK, and regulates driver licencing and maintenance standards. He paid tribute to the professionalism of all NX drivers and engineers, and how much he enjoys travelling on our routes 7 and 50. Andy Street, the Mayor of the West Midlands, was delighted to come and speak about the importance of buses to our communities. As well as our drivers being the safest people on the road; we’re all providing a vital public service which lets people access jobs, education, families and healthcare.

The Mayor (West Midlands) was also excited that new government figures show bus use in the West Midlands is growing faster than any other city region. In fact, the growth here is more than all the other metropolitan counties put together. TfWM’s press release about our partnership is driving ‘rocketing bus passenger numbers’ is here. We’ve had Santas out across our services this week, spreading Christmas cheer from Dundee to Dudley, and Walsall to Warwickshire. Tony Hawkins, our Wolverhampton Santa, was interviewed on route 5 by Radio WM. You can hear him on Monday’s breakfast show. Finally, on safety, we’ve gathered all four of our British Safety Council ‘swords of honour’ together for a photo shoot to celebrate our record-breaking audit score. It’s no exaggeration to say that there are people alive and healthy today because of your dedication to health and safety. It’s a reminder to stay safe over the festive season, and never be complacent. We look forward to breaking more records next year.Have a great Christmas break, and once again many thanks for all your work over the year,David Bradford.”

Councillor Phil Bateman added “Many of you will remember that, I worked for National Express previously, I am still very interested in how they operate and perform.”

Phil Bateman

Phil Bateman is Married to Mary and lives in Wednesfield North. He was a long serving local politician having served previously on the now defunct West Midlands County Council... read more