Johnsons Coaches providing public transport alternative

Henly-in-Arden-based Johnsons Coaches is devising a new service to get the region’s workforce safely back in operation.

The operator has drawn up new social distancing guidelines for its fleet, which sees the capacity of its buses and coaches halved. The plan provides what it describes as a safer alternative to other forms of public transport and which can be used by local companies. It comes as workers who are unable to work from home are being asked to return to work via public transport, where social distancing measures are difficult. And as big Warwickshire-based companies such as Jaguar Land Rover, who employ thousands of staff in the region, attempt to play their part in reigniting the economy, Johnsons Coaches is stepping in to allay any fears of using public transport.

John Johnson, Commercial Director at Johnsons Coaches, said: “The current situation is a double-edged sword for employers – on one hand they are asking their staff to return to work, but for some who rely on public transport, there is also a risk that they could be exposing themselves to coronavirus in the process by travelling on other forms of overcrowded public transport.

“However, we have come up with a solution that will enable large employers to transport their staff to and from work safely to improve their wellbeing.

“We have halved the capacity of our coaches and buses to ensure that passengers will always be at least one metre away from another person, and each coach will be disinfected after every journey – two important points that can’t be guaranteed on public transport.

“As the country continues to edge out of lockdown, we hope that more businesses, schools and other groups consider ways that they can contribute to ensuring everyday transport is as safe as possible for their staff, pupils or members.”

Cllr Izzi Seccombe, portfolio holder for economic development and Leader of Warwickshire County Council, added: “A key way of boosting our economy will be by businesses helping each other where possible, and this is a brilliant example of that.

“We have seen public transport overwhelmed with commuters in other parts of the country, and it’s important locally that we have infrastructure in place to ease the future burden on our buses and trains when lockdown eases further over the coming weeks.”

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