I have made quite a few bus journeys recently involving major groups and independents and I have to say I’m not sure that some of the big groups put the effort into keeping their buses clean that they should. In fact I am of the opinion that the oft secretive cleaner doesn’t exist anymore. I think what we have is mere litter pickers.
So what makes me take that view. Well in my day, cleaners actually cleaned. Surfaces were wiped, windows were wiped. Buses were cleaned.
So what is behind my rant….
Maybe getting older means I have become less tolerant. Maybe. But I sat on a bus the other day and when the doors were closed there was an area at the front of the bus thick in dirt and dust. It would be easy to suggest the area had been cleaned with the entrance doors open as the dirty area would have been behind then when open. But lets not give the operator more credit that it deserves. I would suggest the clean area is when drivers and even passengers sorting out their tickets have put their bags. The window frame areas were clean except where the seat back encroach. I have no doubt the clean areas are where passengers limbs and clothing has rubbed the area. Seat frames were dirty. The cleanliness of some of our buses is not good enough. If buses had to have a hygiene rating them many I have recently traveled on would get a ‘0’!
And whilst on the subject of tatty buses. Why does modern moquette only last for 12 months before it fades and after five or six years areas are almost threadbare. In my day we were scrapping 15-20 year old buses that still had seats trimmed in the moquette in which they were delivered. Where has the quality and pride gone?
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.