Good progress is made on college public transport issuesPublished: April 6, 2017
The boss of one of Telford’s biggest public transport companies met with staff and students from two local colleges as part of an ongoing campaign to improve service levels.
Jamie Crowsley of Arriva Midlands attended a meeting at Telford College of Arts and Technology, where representatives from both TCAT and neighbouring New College Telford were present.
Mr Crowsley, general manager of Arriva Midlands in Telford, spoke to the group in TCAT’s Orange Tree restaurant. A total of 17 student council members were present – 12 from TCAT and five from New College.
He agreed to look at reinstating a Muxton pick-up by re-routing the 897 service – if students from the two colleges could prove a sufficient need.
And he confirmed that the company was also looking at extending capacity of the X4 service after complaints of overcrowding.
He said: “The meeting with the students from the TCAT and New College student council was enlightening.
“It’s always good to get feedback on the service – good and bad! Several good ideas came out of the meeting, and we will endeavour to work together to create a better bus service.”
Mr Crowsley also told students that Arriva was looking at improving its App which provides information on the location of each bus, and said there were also moves to step up social media activity.
Daniel Blasczyk, enrichment co-ordinator at TCAT, said: “Jamie came well prepared, and had looked into issues previously raised from joint meetings by the Telford College and New College student councils.
“The students asked Jamie lots of questions, which were answered honestly and openly. It was a very productive meeting.”
Chris Wain, head of student experience at New College Telford, added: “With exam season fast approaching, it was reassuring to see that Arriva appreciate the importance of our students’ punctuality, and we look forward to working with Jamie again.”
Nathan Marsh, vice president of the student council at New College Telford, said: “We covered a wide variety of points which will hopefully create a strong alliance between the two colleges, and Arriva.
“Jamie came across as friendly and honest, and we now look forward to seeing improvements as a result of our discussions.”
TCAT student Lauren Bromwich questioned why drivers sometimes refused to stop and let more passengers on board – it was explained that each bus had a capacity which could not be legally exceeded.
She also questioned the punctuality of buses and attitude of drivers, and Mr Crowsley said staff attended 7.5 hours of training each year which covered many different aspects of a professional bus driver’s duties, including customer service. He said punctuality levels were improving.