Most businesses have strict brand guidelines and spend a huge amount of money on branding. For transport companies, vehicle liveries form part of the brand and strict guidelines are in place to ensure a consistent image.
But look around and things are not as consistent as they seem…
I recall in my days with the West Midlands Passenger Transport Executive that buses repainted at Walsall Works differed slightly from those that went through Tyburn Road Works in Birmingham. Then there was Coventry, most buses here were painted to the guidelines, but then supplies of Coventry Marshall Red paint were used up on the repaint of several Daimler CVG6s, rather than them receiving the corporate PTE blue and cream colours.
Fast forward to 2016 and I was drawn to a photograph of a Stagecoach Enviro 200 taken by our good friend Damon Powell. It looked odd and the reason was that it carries the Dart SLF-style livery, rather than the usual Enviro 200 livery. Having done some investigation we can reveal that it was an error when the bus was repainted out of Nottinghamshire County Council livery. Bus 36003, part of the Stagecoach East Midlands fleet, was the first of the type to get a repaint and the was done incorrectly. When noticed a second bus was already receiving a repaint, but this was quickly altered to the correct style. The decision was taken, however, to leave the incorrect livery on 36003.
A further Stagecoach Enviro 200 to carry a non standard livery is Manchester’s 36075 which we featured in our Stagecoach Manchester Fleet Handbook and which received a trial livery, which was not adopted.
It is not just vehicles carrying the current Stagecoach livery that carry different styles. I remember a visit to Cambridge many years ago when it struck me that the stripes livery on Dart SLF P324EFL didn’t look right. It was certainly a different interpretation into how the stripes should be applied.
It is always good to hear of corporate businesses supporting charities that do tremendous work, so Steven Knight Media was impressed with the latest initiative from Stagecoach East Midlands - a company that we know well. Only last year Stagecoach East Midlands supported the Lincoln Poppy Appeal and now it plans to turn one of its Enviro 400 double deck buses yellow in support of Marie Curie’s Great Daffodil Appeal 2016.
Marie Curie provides care and support for people living with terminal illness and their families. The charity has been carrying out this vital work for over 65 years - last year alone they cared for over 40,000 people across the UK.
Every March, millions of people across the UK show their support for the Great Daffodil Appeal, which has been raising awareness and funds since 1986.
Stagecoach East Midlands has supported the charity for some time including in the past having a bus painted in a special promotional livery. Now for 2016 Stagecoach East Midlands will be launching a daffodil bus, which will take to the road in March.
The bus will be adorned with daffodils which will carry personal messages allowing people to remember their loved ones on the bus.
Messages will be subject to approval by Stagecoach East Midlands and a donation of a minimum of £5 is requested, which will be donated to the Great Daffodil Appeal.
Simply fill in the form below stating your name, contact details and the personalised message you’d like printing inside your daffodil; please note all messages are subject to approval by Stagecoach East Midlands.
Stagecoach East Midlands tells us that each daffodil will be printed onto vinyl with the personalised message in the centre then applied to the bus. Sponsors can also add their name and location, such as ‘donated by John Smith, Nettleham’. The daffodils will be placed on the bus at random.
Once the daffodil bus is out on the road it will operate across the Stagecoach East Midlands area including in Gainsborough, Grimsby, Hull, Lincoln, Mansfield, Newark, Retford, Scunthorpe, Skegness and Worksop.
Stagecoach East Midlands is accepting messages and donations until the end of February, but space on the bus is limited.
Help Stagecoach East Midlands to reach its target and fill the bus with daffodils.
Every donation counts and Steven Knight Media along with our friends at the Lincolnshire & East Yorkshire Transport Review (LEYTR) will be supporting this great
For more information, and to place a message visit the Stagecoach site at
I was intrigued to read a recent Blog post from Louisa Phillips’ which said that Stagecoach South East has applied ‘One’ branding to an Enviro 400 double deck in Eastbourne. As would be expected the bus is used on services 1 and 1A in Eastbourne. Besides the distinctive ‘One’ logo the strapline on the bus reads ‘One for the road’.
But, where have I seen this idea before. Yes, its nothing new. And it’s nothing original as we can now reveal.
Back in the history of Stagecoach in Peterborough, almost 12 years ago to be almost precise, a fleet of Volvo Olympians used which were used on the city’s Route One were given ‘One’ branding. And guess what the application of the branding seemed to have a ‘family feel’ to the one recently adopted in Eastbourne.
Is this a case of ‘what goes around comes around’ or ‘why invent the wheel’?
We can reveal that in Peterborough, the ‘One’ brand was devised to differentiate the route from the main Peterborough Citi network due to it being operated by non-low floor buses. Two years on Tridents were delivered and the ‘One’ brand was no more. The idea for the Peterborough ‘One’ brand is credited to Stagecoach East’s (who operate the the Peterborough network) then Commercial Director Philip Norwell. Fast forward 12 years and the same Philip Norwell is now Managing Director of Stagecoach South East. He has obviously taken the view that a good brand is worth re-using and for Philip Norwell this is the ‘One’!
Steven Knight is a Transport Specialist who has over 40 years experience in the bus and rail industries as well as in specialist transport journalism. He is a member of the Chartered Institute of Journalists.