National Express marks 15 years of Partner Operator Awards

National Express has celebrated its partner operators in its annual National Express Operator Partnership (NEOP) Awards, now in its 15th year.

(L to R) Ed Rickard, Service Delivery Director at National Express presents Derek Campbell of Bruce’s Coaches with the Driver of the Year 2022 award

The accolades recognise the essential role the company’s partner operators play in ensuring it can provide reliable, safe and comfortable coach travel. The awards took place at the Best Western Plus Windmill Village Hotel in Coventry.

The NEOP Awards are intended to reflect National Express’ commitment to providing the highest standards across its network. Each operator is measured based on an evaluation table and the winners determined by their performance and scores in areas such as driver excellence, coach cleanliness and quality and customer service.

Among the big winners were Bennett’s Coaches, crowned Network Operator of the Year for the second consecutive year. Other winners include Travelstar European for Best Fleet, Llew Jones International for Most Improved Operator and Derek Campbell of Bruce’s Coaches taking the Driver of the Year title.

Chris Hardy, Managing Director of National Express UK Coach, said: “Our partner operators play an essential role in our network and we are delighted to recognise their hard work, dedication and outstanding service through our annual awards. We’re proud to have them on board and extend our heartfelt thanks and congratulations to all the winners!”

Full list of winners:

  • Best Fleet (sponsored by Dawsongroup plc) – Travelstar European for achieving 100% on 49 vehicle audits in 2022
  • Driving Out Harm (sponsored by Seeing Machines) – Edwards Coaches (Wales) achieving an audited score of 99.5% in safety excellence
  • Go Green Award (sponsored by Scania GB) – Bernard Kavanagh & Sons, reporting zero spillages in 2022
  • Most Improved Operator (sponsored by Lytx DriveCam) – Llew Jones International for making significant changes in fleet, people and service and achieving a 12%+ rolling year improvement in 2022
  • Customer Experience Excellence (sponsored by Scania) – Yeomans Canyon Travel for ranking first place in several categories
  • Driver of the Year (sponsored by Add Secure) – Derek Campbell from Bruce Coaches for consistent excellence behind the wheel
  • Engineer of the Year (sponsored by Caetano Bus) – John Bruce Jnr. from Bruce Coaches for exceeding engineering expectations
  • Operational Manager of the Year (sponsored by uTrack) – Tim Robson from Galloway European for ensuring operational excellence
  • Network Operator of the Year – one to five vehicles (sponsored by Journeo) – E Stott & Sons
  • Network Operator of the Year – six to ten vehicles (sponsored by Scania GB) – Bennetts Coaches
  • Network Operator of the Year – 11 to 20 vehicles (sponsored by Scania GB) – Travelstar European
  • Network Operator of the Year – over 20 vehicles (sponsored by Volvo) – Edwards Coaches Wales
  • Gold Standard Achievement Awards (sponsored by Caetano Bus): Edwards Coaches Wales, Edwards Coaches Bristol,Travelstar European, E Stott & Sons, Bennetts Coaches
  • Overall Network Operator of the Year (sponsored by Caetano Bus) – Bennetts Coaches

Golden Spanner Awards, recognising operators who have consistently met and exceeded expectations, introducing best practice across engineering.

  • National Express Luton
  • Oxford Bus Company
  • Parks (Plymouth)
  • Selwyns Travel (Runcorn)
  • Selwyns Travel (Manchester)
  • E Stott & Sons
  • The Kings Ferry Dover
  • Travelstar European

Sustained High Achievement:

  • Travelstar European – 13 consecutive years
  • E Stott & Sons – 13 consecutive years
  • Bennett’s Coaches – 12 consecutive years
  • Edwards Coaches (Wales) – 12 consecutive years
  • Bruce Coaches – Nine consecutive years
  • Parks (Plymouth) – Nine consecutive years
  • NXTS Aston – Nine consecutive years
  • Edwards Coaches (Bristol) – Five consecutive years
  • Yeomans Canyon Travel – Five consecutive years
  • Chalfont Northampton – Four consecutive years
  • Galloway European – Four consecutive years
  • Oxford Bus Company – Four consecutive years
  • Selwyns Manchester – Three consecutive year

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