I was delighted to have the chance to have a good old catch up with a gentleman who I have a lot of time for, from an organisation that I have a lot of time for, namely Passenger Focus. I have known John Sidebotham for some years as our paths crossed. John has always been a knowledgable and engaging man who has had high profile positions in the Passenger Transport industry for many years.
The reason that I contacted John was because I wanted to tap into his vast knowledge prior to my giving a presentation at the Future Fleet Forum Conference in London. What I was seeking from John was a view on what todays young generation think about buses in 2018. In fairness Passenger Transport are without doubt the best qualified organisation to ask. They certainly do have their finger on the pulse of modern thinking.
Every year they conduct extensive national surveys interviewing nation wide over 40,000 bus users of all demographics, shapes, sizes, and beliefs. The surveys are deep and probing and really do give a true reflection of what the nation thinks. My timing for once happened to be good, as luckily for me Passenger Focus have just undertaken a major survey of young people aged 14 to 17 to ascertain exactly what they think of todays modern bus offering.
That was the good news, the bad news was that the results were quite rightly embargoed until the official launch of the survey which I have managed to blag an invitation to attend. The formal launch will take place in central Birmingham on Monday 5th February. The guest of honour, and the man giving the keynote address is Jesse Norman the Secretary of State for Buses. Always good to mingle with those in high places from my experience.
Also attending which I also like, is a number of the young people who not only completed the survey but were happy to share their opinions with a bigger audience. I am really looking forward to this event, and I will of course be busy blogging about what I discover when the results are announced.