Go-Ahead update on environmental and technological initiatives
Go-Ahead today provides a progress update on its environmental and technological initiatives in recent months.
Across the Group, our focus remains on driving environmental wellbeing and delivering smart cities to help everyone move forward.
Southern Railway recently announced a project, to upgrade its free-to-use electric vehicle charging points. In collaboration with Pod Point, the upgrade combines technology and environmentally friendly design to position public transport as a solution to reducing congestion and improving air quality.
London Midland announced an investment across its network to improve facilities for passengers who choose to leave the car at home and cycle to the station. The investment includes bike parking spaces and repair hubs and high-tech monitoring systems to provide real-time data to cyclists about space availability. This has been coupled with increased security and anti-theft measures, including improved CCTV and smart lighting systems.
As part of our commitment to create urban transport systems of the future, 75% of our regional bus fleet is now enabled with contactless payment options and we are seeing over 67,000 weekly contactless journeys across Go North East, Go South Coast, Plymouth Citybus and Oxford Bus Company — with the latter taking over 22% of weekly revenue through contactless and Go South Coast achieving over £1million of contactless sales since launch at the end of June.
We are also launching a new bus app that will enable passengers to receive real-time information, track bus locations and be notified of the best value ticket for their journey through a modern, customer-friendly interface.
In rail, customers can now benefit from the new Southern Railway website, offering easier navigation, improved information and enhanced station location maps and car parking availability details.
Moving everybody forward
Beyond smart city technical solutions, making bus travel simpler and more attractive to customers remains a key focus. In the past four months, Oxford Bus company has introduced a new Park and Ride service in conjunction with a new shopping centre in Oxford, offering a single ticket parking and onward travel solution. Thames Travel has also launched a newly branded service promoting easier leisure trips along the Thames between Oxford, Wallingford and Henley.
Southeastern recently demonstrated its improving customer service levels as its Customer Service Ambassadors pilot programme won the Customer Service Excellence Award at the National Rail Awards. Trialled at London Cannon Street and Charing Cross, mystery shopping results showed customer satisfaction increased from 50% and 80% respectively to over 90%. Making rail journeys simpler and more customer friendly is at the heart of Go-Ahead’s strategy.
Go-Ahead’s Chief Executive, David Brown, said:
“Go-Ahead’s focus on the environment and smart solutions for cities is helping to shape the urban transport system of the future. We have made a lot of progress in recent months and look forward to rolling out further initiatives to deliver a world where every journey is taken care of.”
Go-Ahead is a leading UK public transport operator, providing high quality services in the bus and rail sectors. Employing around 29,000 people across the country, over one billion passenger journeys are undertaken on our services each year. We are committed to operating our companies in a safe, socially and environmentally responsible way and are proud to have been accredited with triple Carbon Trust Standard for reductions in carbon, water and waste. In addition to the travelling public, our customers include the Department for Transport, Transport for London (TfL) and local authorities.
Go-Ahead is one of the UK’s largest bus operators. With a fleet of around 5,200 buses, we carry over two million passengers every day. Our operations are focused on high density commuter markets. We have a strong presence in London, with around 24 per cent market share, where we provide regulated services for TfL. Outside London, we operate services in Oxford, East Anglia, the South East, Southern and north east England. In September 2016, the Group began operating a bus contract in Singapore, on behalf of the Land Transport Authority.
The rail operation, Govia, is 65 per cent owned by Go-Ahead and 35 per cent by Keolis. It is the largest rail operation in the UK, responsible for over 30 per cent of all UK passenger rail journeys through its rail franchises: GTR (Govia Thameslink Railway) Southeastern and London Midland.
Certain statements included in this press release contain forward-looking information concerning the Group’s strategy, operations, financial performance or condition, outlook, growth opportunities or circumstances in the sectors or markets in which the Group operates. By their nature, forward-looking statements involve uncertainty because they depend of future circumstances, and relate to events, not all of which are within the Group’s control or can be produced by the Group. Although the Group believes that the expectations reflected in such forward–looking statements are reasonable, no assurance can be given that such expectations will prove to have been correct. Nothing in this press release should be construed as a profit forecast and no part of these results constitutes, or shall be taken to constitute, an invitation or inducement to invest in The Go-Ahead Group plc or any other entity, and must not be relied upon in any way in connection with any investment decision. Except as required by law, the Group undertakes no obligation to update any forward looking statement.