Arriva London helps a retired bus driver make his dream come true
Arriva London values its role in the community and values the relationship that it develops with bus drivers across the country. We recently received a request passed on by TfL and, as all the elements were right at the time, decided to help make a bus driver’s dream come true.
It started with a note from the driver’s daughter Sam:
My Dad, Mr Ken Shipp, drove a Routemaster bus for London Transport for over 15 years, working out of Tramway Avenue. Back in 1988, our family relocated to Norfolk and my dad took a small break and then returned to drive a double-decker bus in Norwich in 1994. Finally, nearly 67 years old, dad has decided to retire from bus driving. He hangs the driving wheel up on Thursday 2nd June after driving for First Group for exactly 22 years to the day . His memories of London Transport along with the people he worked with are amazing, my memories as a child were fantastic of my dad driving a bus, and on many occasions my mum would take my sister and I into London just so we got a ride on his bus.
My family and I would love to surprise my dad and hope someone at TFL can help us make it possible for my dad to drive one of the new Routemaster buses (just a short trip obviously). Dad's licence does not expire until the middle of August, just in case the question arises. We are planning a trip to London on Thursday 4th August, to hope we could surprise him.
And surprise him we did on 4th August, with a New Routemaster to drive and Perry, one of Arriva London’s driver trainers to supervise his drive. First, Perry gave him some ‘Type’ training at Arriva’s Edmonton garage, then an obstacle course was put out to test Ken’s abilities, and finally he drove to Tottenham garage via Tramway Avenue with his family on board.
Perry was very impressed with his driving and awarded him a special certificate for his endeavours. Ken was really impressed with the New Routemaster and said:
“I’ve had a fantastic day thanks to Arriva. The new Routemaster bus is such a smooth drive and such a difference from the old Routemasters I used to drive. It’s a day I’ll never forget”
Ken’s daughter was full of praise as well:
“Words escape me as to the amazing time we all had today. Dad was non-stop talking about it all afternoon. I just can't thank you enough for everything you did to put this together for us all. We all can't thank you and Perry enough.”
Published : Mon 11th May. 2015 - Wed 10th Jun. 2015
At Arriva London, we continually talk with our drivers & often (with their agreement) record their views on video to help us better understand their working environment, and to share with the public how they deal with situations they face every day.
Each year, the London Bus Awards celebrate all that is good about the bus industry in London, recognising the sterling work of drivers, garage support teams and frontline TfL staff who consistently perform to high standards.
Arriva London has been gearing up for the introduction of New Routemasters (NRMs) on its route 73, running from Stoke Newington to Victoria out of its Stamford Hill garage.
Over the recent May bank holiday weekend Arriva London’s pristine looking LT327 from Brixton garage was brought into service for filming at Waterloo Southbank and in Croydon, with movie star Kevin Bacon
Arriva London and the Metropolitan Police Lambeth Safety Transport Team have joined forces in a new initiative to demonstrate to school children in the Lambeth area the safety and security benefits of CCTV systems fitted on Arriva London’s buses