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The Guardian recently published a piece profiling bus transportation in and around England. While the number of bus journeys has been steadily falling since the peak years of 2008/2009, it is still a very popular form of transportation in London. In fact, the total number of bus journeys in London is greater than the rest of England combined.

The Department for Transport (DfT) says 4.6 billion local bus trips occurred within the last year. Of that number, 2.4 billion were in London. That’s not surprising given the population density of England’s capital. However, bus transport is down more than 6% since 2009.

Experts say the high numbers in London are due in large part to the free concessionary travel introduced at the start of the economic downturn. The gradual decline since has been blamed on continually rising fares among those who still pay for their bus transport. From a business standpoint, it is not a sustainable model.

To help make buses more attractive, the DfT has been pouring funding into what is known as Better Bus Areas (BBA). The first BBA funding went to Sheffield this past spring. DFT officials are convinced it has made a noticeable impact on ridership there. The point of the initiative is to make bus travel more attractive among England’s commuters.

A Need for Drivers

Despite declining bus transport rates there is still a substantial need for new PCV drivers for both school transport and coach operations. Furthermore, the requirement for veteran drivers to earn CPC certification has only exacerbated an ongoing driver shortage.

CPC is an acronym for ‘Certificate of Professional Compliance’ – a certification that recently became necessary among all professional drivers in the UK. PCV license holders were required to complete CPC training by this past September (2013).

Some older drivers nearing the ends of their careers elected to retire early or find other work rather than spend the money necessary for CPC training. Others failed to complete their training only to discover they were no longer allowed to work after the September deadline. Both of these things combined have resulted in the need for more new drivers to pick up the slack.

Individuals undergoing bus driver training for the first time need not worry about CPC training initially; it’s part of the standard training they now receive. They will have to undergo remedial training every few years once they earn their licences, just like any other PCV driver.

The HGV Training Centre can help you earn your PCV licence if you are looking to begin a new career as a bus or coach driver. We offer comprehensive training that prepares you to pass your tests the first time. You will be ready to look for work in just a matter of months. What’s more, we help you through the entire process from start to finish.

If you are ready to start your new career, get in touch with us today. New classes are always forming in our facilities around the UK.


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