IT used to be one of the most dreadful bus journeys in the country.
The X95 bus service which linked the Borders with Edinburgh and Carlisle was often late, cold and uncomfortable.
But this week First Scotland East has announced bus passengers in the Borders are benefiting from an improved service thanks to an investment worth more than �1.5million. Aimed at improving bus travel and making journeys more comfortable, First has introduced ten brand new single deck buses on service X95 which links the Borders with Edinburgh to the North East and Carlisle to the South. And now it is like a home from home.
Each bus is fitted with complementary wi-fi, leather seats and audio announcements. Meanwhile, the interior of each vehicle has been modified to allow greater flexibility for both buggies and wheelchairs whilst providing additional grab rails for all passengers whether seated or standing.
Operations Director of First Scotland East, John Gorman, said: "Our �1.5million investment in ten brand new buses reflects our aim to improve services for our customers and our commitment to encourage more people to use our services and to use them more often."
Mr Gorman was showcasing one of the new vehicles at Galashiels Bus Station earlier this week. He was joined by members of his management team on Wednesday (20 Feb) at a 'Meet the Team event' which was organised by First Scotland East to give customers the opportunity to provide direct feedback about the company's bus services.
"The new buses have been in service for a few weeks and have proved very popular with customers," continued Mr Gorman. "Feedback from passengers indicates that the leather seating and in particular the complementary wi-fi , which allows passengers to stay connected whilst on the move, is proving very popular."
The new vehicles introduced by First are Enviro 300s, built by Falkirk based manufacturer Alexander Dennis. They all come fitted with low floor access and have the latest Euro V engines.
The new buses operate on Service X95 which runs between Edinburgh and Carlisle via Eskbank, Newtongrange-Stow, Galashiels, Selkirk, Hawick and Langholm. Services operate every 30 minutes at peak times with 90 minute journey times between Edinburgh and Galashiels and 2hrs between Galashiels and Carlisle.