Conductors back at UC
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• Conductor-crewed doubledeckers are back in action on the streets of Bedford, courtesy of the United Counties Omnibus Company, and the company is claiming "significantly-reduced running times" for the town service.
Former London Transport Routemaster buses are being used, with adverts on the side reading: "We've brought back conductors for an even better service."
Eight of the buses are working a 12-minute frequency service to Kempston which is particularly prone to delays because of traffic congestion.
United Counties is now own ed by Stagecoach Holdings, and the group has followed a similar pattern with other exNBC companies it has acquired, as well as with some of its own operations. Hampshire Bus in Southampton and Cumberland Motor Services in Carlisle each reintroduced conductor operation on some busy routes shortly after their acquisition by Stagecoach.
The Routemasters are finished in United Counties' green livery, but carry "Routemaster" in large letters as a fleetname and on the front of the upper deck.
Bus-stops served by the conductor-crewed Routemasters have been specifically marked to tell passengers what sort of service runs on the route.