The Harrogate Bus Company

Business • East Riding of Yorkshire

Transdev operator The Harrogate Bus Company is converting its entire fleet to fully electric power, to achieve a 100% zero emission bus operation in Harrogate.

  • One of The Harrogate Bus Company's electric buses.
  • Planet Mark Zero Carbon Tour.

The Harrogate Bus company's story

Transdev operator The Harrogate Bus Company is well on track to make Harrogate Britain's first 'zero-emission bus town'. In August 2023, it placed orders worth £21 million for 39 new buses to enable conversion of its entire fleet in the town to fully electric power. This includes 20 new all-electric single-deck buses, to be used on the operator's busy urban route 1 between Harrogate and Knaresborough; route 7 linking Harrogate, Wetherby and Leeds; and rural route 24 between Harrogate and Pateley Bridge. There will also be 19 new British-built fully electric double-deck buses, to relaunch route 36 linking Ripon, Harrogate and Leeds.

These orders are supported by £7.8m of funding from the Government's Zero Emission Bus Regional Areas (ZEBRA) scheme, following a successful bid by Transdev's partner, North Yorkshire Council. The substantial investment follows successful trials of several types of all-electric buses on three varied routes in and around Harrogate, and on The Harrogate Bus Company's high-frequency Shuttle route linking Bradford and Keighley.

Henri Rohard, Transdev Managing Director, said: "In combination with our existing eight Harrogate Electrics-branded Volvo 7900E electric buses, the first of their kind in Britain, 47 fully-electric vehicles are now expected to be in service in Spring 2024.

"Higher power output delivered by today's new generation batteries means each bus can go further between charge-ups – and to make sure we provide a reliable service, our buses will also have top-up charges at Harrogate Bus Station, as they will travel further in a day than the maximum range achievable by fully electric buses."

The new 12m-long single-decker buses can go 80 miles on a single charge, and once back at the depot, will take just 6 minutes to fully re-charge, while passengers are boarding.

Useful learnings from The Harrogate Bus Company

The company invested time in conducting extensive trials to determine the suitability of the various bus models they were considering for the variety of public transport requirements within the city and out to its rural surroundings. This included planning of the charging infrastructure that would suit the varied operational demands of the new fleet across those routes. During the trials, the bus operator also invited its customers to rate key design features, and their feedback was incorporated into the specifications of the new buses.

Transdev worked in close partnership with North Yorkshire council both in the planning, and also obtaining finance from the Government's ZEBRA scheme.

The Harrogate Bus Company's own engineering teams will get training and upskilling from the bus manufacturers, to get the best performance from its new electric fleet.

The Harrogate Bus Company's metrics

Customer satisfaction (as a motivation for more bus use, particularly following the pandemic).
Passenger miles on each route.
Reduction in carbon emissions.

Feeling inspired? Discover more about this story...

Positive Impacts

Clean Air

Response to climate crisis

Mitigation

Reach

Town

Organisation

Business, 250 to 10,000 people

Shared by

North East and Yorkshire Net Zero Hub

Updated Feb, 2024

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