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Successful night for FirstGroup at National Transport Awards

Friday 16 July 2010

The UK’s largest transport company, bus and rail operator FirstGroup, enjoyed a successful night at the prestigious National Transport Awards held in Manchester on Thursday (15 July) evening.

FirstGroup’s Chief Executive, Sir Moir Lockhead, was presented with the Outstanding Contribution to National Transport award and ScotRail, one of FirstGroup’s rail franchises, received the UK Rail Operator of the Year award for the second year in a row for its ongoing success. First TransPennine Express, another of FirstGroup’s rail franchises, was highly commended in the same category.

In the ‘Improvements to Bus Services’ category First picked up the award with the City and County of Swansea for the ftr metro project designed to help reduce urban travel congestion by making public transport an attractive and realistic option to the car.

First’s industry leading DriveGreen programme, which provides real time feedback to bus drivers on safe and fuel efficient driving, was highly commended in the ‘Contribution to Sustainable Transport’ category.

The judges commended Sir Moir on winning the Outstanding Contribution to Transport award for his rise from bus mechanic to Chief Executive of the largest bus and train company in the UK and for the dedication of his time, money and energy to charitable causes, most notably Save the Children.

Speaking at the award ceremony Sir Moir said, “I am extremely proud and honoured to receive the ‘Outstanding Contribution to National Transport’ award.

“In his speech Philip Hammond, the new Secretary of State, said, ‘ultimately it’s the people in transport who really make the difference, using their skills and commitment to deliver real and sustained improvements on the ground.’

“I couldn’t agree more and the awards and commendations received by FirstGroup’s bus and rail companies are testament to the hard work and commitment of our staff. I would like to congratulate them all and thank them for making FirstGroup the company it is today”.

ScotRail’s award follows another successful year:   Passenger journeys increased by 3.2%, punctuality and reliability were a record highs and its overall National Passenger Survey rating was also at a record high with nine out of 10 customers satisfied overall with their train service.

Steve Montgomery, ScotRail's Managing Director, said of the Rail Operator of the Year award: “I am delighted with the award for the second year in a row. It is testament to all in the ScotRail team in delivering customer growth, improved performance and significant investment in trains and at stations.”

The National Transport Awards, in association with Transport Times magazine, are supported by the Department for Transport, the Local Transport Planning Network, and Passenger Focus. The awards were judged by Transport Times publisher Professor David Begg, Baroness Ros Scott, Andy Southern, managing director for transport planning at consultant Atkins, Nick Bisson, director of regional and local transport policy, Department for Transport, and Anthony Smith, chief executive of Passenger Focus.

Hosted by radio and television presenter Grant Stott, the awards drew over 500 transport professionals to the awards ceremony at The Palace Hotel, Manchester.

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