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Stagecoach to use 'luxury' buses, complete with free wi-fi and leather seats, on Carlisle-west Cumbria service

Stagecoach is making a calculated bid to persuade commuters between west Cumbria and Carlisle to switch to the bus.

Stagecoach Gold buses photo
The buses have leather seats and free wi-fi

It says that four new double deckers, purchased at a cost of £650,000, offer standards of comfort and luxury never seen before on a bus route in Cumbria.

Features include hand-stitched, high-backed Lazzarini leather seats and free wi-fi.

They will enter service on the 300 route early next month.

This provides an hour frequency – two-hourly on Sundays – between Whitehaven and Carlisle via Distington, Workington, Flimby, Maryport, Aspatria, Wigton and Thursby.

The buses will be branded ‘Stagecoach Gold’ and finished a gold-and-blue livery.

A team of drivers will be dedicated to the route.

They have been getting extra training in customer service in readiness for the launch.

Stagecoach also promises that the vehicles will be subject to “a meticulous cleaning regime” as part of its strategy to convince motorists that the bus is a realistic alternative to their cars.

Nigel Winter, managing director of Stagecoach in Cumbria and North Lancashire, said: “It is a real coup for Cumbria to be chosen to receive these luxurious buses.

“Bus travel has come a long way in the past decade and more and more people are realising that it is the more sustainable, economically-friendly way to travel. You can even connect to the internet or pick up your emails using the free on-board wi-fi.”

The buses will be based at Stagecoach’s Lillyhall depot near Workington and are the first of their type to be deployed by the company in the north of England.

Stagecoach will offer weekly tickets aimed at commuters, offering unlimited travel from £3.71 a day.

The company saw off competition on the 300 route earlier this year.

Wigton firm Reays launched a service between Workington in Carlisle in January, only to withdraw it two months later when the expected passenger numbers failed to materialise.

Have your say

@bevfrench. I made a point of checking the fares today. The SINGLE fare from Annan to Carlisle is £5.oo, the RETURN is £7.00. The SINGLE fare from Eastriggs to Carlisle is in fact £4.90. The RETURN fare is the same at £7.00. Please get your facts right rather than scaremongering.

Posted by Stemax1960 on 29 July 2013 at 22:03

@Bolverk. This is a case of the pot calling the kettle black. Reays duplicate Stagecoach services using Stagecoach route numbers with the letter R after them. Examples are 300R,554R, 555R, 77R, 78R. This is misleading to the public, some of whom are Tourists on Holiday. I for one would respect Reays more if they were to use their initiative and create new routes rather than duplicating Stagecoach routes and routenumbers.

Posted by Stemax1960 on 28 July 2013 at 19:53

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