Region to mark Catch the Bus Week

Bus companies combine to promote public transport use.

Transport for West Midlands will welcome the Greener Journeys chief executive next Monday for the West Midlands launch of Catch the Bus Week.

Catch the Bus Week is an annual nationwide campaign to raise awareness of the benefits of taking the bus instead of driving. Now in its fourth year, the campaign aims to be bigger than ever before, with promotional events and ticket give-aways right across the region.

Bus companies, local authorities and passenger groups all play a part and, as part of Monday’s launch, National Express West Midlands and Arriva are each providing a brand new bus which the public can look around.

Diamond and Johnsons will be among other bus operators, who are all part of the West Midlands Bus Alliance, supporting the event and promoting their services during the day, between 11am and 5pm.

Claire Haigh, chief executive of Greener Journeys, will join Laura Shoaf, managing director of TfWM, the transport arm of the West Midlands Combined Authority, for the launch in High St, Birmingham city centre. Claire said: “Catch the Bus Week is now in its fourth year and once again we are delighted to see the entire bus sector coming together to promote the benefits of the bus.

“TfWM is a big supporter of Catch the Bus Week and we hope this year’s event will be even bigger than 2015, when passengers in the West Midlands were treated to bus selfies, bus tours and various ticket promotions.

“So much of our daily lives depends on the bus – from getting to school, to work, to the shops and to visit family and friends – and this week is the perfect time to show the whole of the West Midlands the very best of what buses can offer.”

Pete Bond, TfWM’s director of transport services, said: “As well as having fun and promoting the benefits of the bus, we also want to use the event to find out what would encourage more people to use the bus.”

“We will be carrying out short surveys and giving away day passes courtesy of Arriva and National Express West Midlands to encourage people who don’t usually think of catching the bus to leave their cars at home and give it a try.”

Details of all events and competitions are on the NWM website – including the return of last year’s highly popular #busselfies, where travellers can take a selfie and tag Network West Midlands on Facebook for the chance to win a family day out.

There is also a colouring competition for youngsters and a non-user survey where participants will be entered into a daily prize draw for bus tickets and weekly draw for a £100 shopping voucher.

TfWM is also holding other promotional events during Catch the Bus Week – on Friday 8th July 11am to 3pm on Coventry’s Broadgate and on Saturday 9 July 11am to 1pm at Merry Hill in Dudley, where there will be a Your Public Transport Matters roadshow.