Arriva London Training Team drive to stardom with ITV’s Double Decker Driving School
When it comes to training bus drivers, the Arriva London Driving School is second to none, and as the new ITV six part series ‘Double Decker Driving School’ will show, learning to be a bus driver isn’t easy.
The series, which first airs Thursday 19th March at 20.30 on ITV, takes a detailed look at the competitive world of trainee London bus drivers, following hopefuls on an intensive six-week course to learn how to negotiate these 36ft-long vehicles through the city's busy streets.
To be an Arriva London bus driver, you need to have a wide range of skills on top of being a good driver. In 2014, there were over 8,000 applicants for places in the driving school and from those original hopefuls, 371 passed their test and joined the Arriva London driving team.
Jayne Steer, Arriva London’s Training Manager, said:-
“Many people who have never driven a bus think that it is easy, but it takes a certain kind of person with skill, ability, patience and a good understanding of customer service, to qualify. What is interesting is that many people join the company as bus drivers, thinking they will just do it for a short time, but when they see the opportunities there are to progress within the business, they stay and make a career with us.”
Arriva London has two training centres in London, one in the North at Edmonton and the other in the South at Croydon. Each centre has its own distinctive blue training buses (there are 31 in the fleet), and each training school has extensive classroom facilities for in-house study.
There are 32 full time driving instructors and 2 full-time examiners, delegated to test by the DVSA.
Arriva employees around 4,500 drivers at any one time to keep its fleet of 1,500 buses (16 different types) on the road, 364 days a year, 24 hours a day. The company delivers over 300 million passenger journeys in London each year and is one of the top suppliers of transport services in London.
David Bridson, one of Arriva’s driving instructors featured in the programme, said:-
“It was great to be invited to be part of the programme, and I’m really glad to have been involved. I have been a driving instructor with Arriva for 20 years and although every day is a challenge, we always get a result in the end. I enjoyed the filming process and what was interesting, it was all 'fly on the wall' stuff, so all the trainees were really going through their actual training.
My family are all looking forward to watching the programmes, and I am proud to be part of it, as I am proud to be part of the Arriva London training team.”
If you feel you have the necessary skills to become an Arriva London bus driver, having watched Double Decker Driving School (or even if you haven’t), then please get in touch, we’ll be glad to welcome you.
Published : Wed 6th Dec. 2017 - Wed 7th Feb. 2018
As part of our commitment to developing our business, we invest heavily in training for all of our staff to offer the great customer experience. We also look at other ways in which we can develop our relationships with the communities we serve, and allow them the opportunity of learning about our processes and to meet some of the team.
Over the past few months we have been working with TfL, conducting Accessibility Awareness forums at our garages.
Doing the right thing, one of our four brand values, is what we have been doing for the last six years by encouraging all of our employees to give to their favourite charities through our Payroll Giving scheme - during this time, they have given more than £1,000,000 pounds to over 160 charities.
Going to school is something we all had to do, but going to school with a red London double-decker bus, and letting four classes from year one come on board to ask questions about the bus, is a privilege we experienced this week at Newbury Park Primary School in North East London.
Last June, Arriva London was delighted to have been re-awarded the TfL contract to run route W6 (Edmonton Green – Southgate Station) for a further five years, starting in January 2018 with brand new buses.
As the festive season approaches, we all look forward to the good-will of giving and receiving, and this was truly illustrated last week when members of our staff made a tour of London, on our open top bus, to meet representatives of some of their charities they give to through their Payroll Giving and celebrate #GivingTuesday.