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Inside Harrogate's new electric buses, the future of public transport?

Inside Harrogate's new electric buses, the future of public transport?

Published by The Stray FM News Team at 7:13am 27th July 2018. (Updated at 7:23am 27th July 2018)

They're quiet, they're clean and they could be about to transform public transport in Harrogate.

Yesterday, Buses Minister Nusrat Ghani MP attended the launch of the town's new electric buses.

Their arrival, from Europe, is set to earn Harrogate the title of Britain's first low-emissions bus town. 

Buses Minister Nusrat Ghani MP was one of the first to ride on the new fleet:

Inside Harrogate's new epectric buses

"There's a huge amount of space, especially if you're a wheelchair user.

"At the back of the bus you can charge your phone, you've got Wi-fi and there's also a mini-desk if you had to do a bit of work.

"Everything has been thought through.

"Why drive, with the stress of it, when you can jump on a bus?"

As well as Wi-fi and mobile charging points, the new buses boast new audio-visual next-stop announcements:

Inside Harrogate's new epectric buses

Among the voices you will hear announcing the next stop is Anna's, who won a Stray FM competition:

Inside Harrogate's new epectric buses

The three buses will serve urban routes including Jennyfields and Pannal Ash.

But will the vehicles help tackle congestion by persuading people to leave their cars at home?

Alex Hornby is CEO of The Harrogate Bus Company:

"The key is giving people buses they want to be seen on.

"I'm confident that no one would be ashamed to leave the car at home and use a bus like this.

"This is one of the most technologically-advanced vehicles on the road so we're setting an example to motorists and other road users.

"The biggest achievement though, for us, will be seeing more people use our wonderful buses."

Inside Harrogate's new epectric buses

Charging masts are in place above three departure stands in Harrogate Bus Station.

A 7 minute charge will provide enough power to complete 35 miles, the equivalent of three journeys.

New electric bus charging points at Harrogate bus station

The new buses will operate under the name "Harrogate Electrics" and are set to hit the roads from mid-August.

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