Coming to a bus stop near you: green transport comes to Dorchester and Prince Charles's village

Profile image for alfiebass

By alfiebass | Tuesday, April 05, 2011, 20:25

Dorchester and Poundbury residents will benefit from a new,

environmentally friendly bus service following a successful joint bid

by Dorset County Council, West Dorset District Council and the Duchy of


The Department for Transport (DfT) has awarded a grant of £166,000 from

its Green Bus Fund to helpbuy two electric-powered buses

to serve a brand new route between Dorchester town centre and Poundbury.

The two British-made Optare Solo vehicles will be the first fully

electric public buses operating in southern England when they come into

service this autumn.

Dorset County Council intends to bid again and extend the electric bus services across Dorchester.

The economical buses offer combined estimated fuel savings of £25,000

over five years compared to standard diesel engines. They will help

improve air quality in the county town, reducing carbon emissions by

around 39 tonnes a year.

The Green Bus Fund was set up by the DfT to help bus companies and

local authorities in England meet the cost of buying new, low-carbon

buses. The fund encourages bidders to raise some of the cost themselves

and offers grants of up to 90 per cent of the difference between the

cost of the low carbon bus and its standard diesel equivalent.

Dorset County Council has contributed £126,000 and West Dorset District Council £100,000 towards the cost of the buses.

David Dawkins, Dorset Passenger Transport manager, Dorset County Council, said: "Public transport has a major environmental improvement role to play in

reducing both car dependency and emissions.  Buses cover very high

mileages in their lifetimes, so we are very pleased that we have

finally been able to make this technology viable in the Dorchester area

and directly improve the local environment.  Stage two will be to

convert all of Dorchester’s local bus services to electric.”

Picture: Dipfan, Flickr



  • Profile image for FlatStanley

    They ought to harness all that hot air being generated over the new council offices. There would be enough to fuel a whole fleet oft rains never mind the buses.

    By FlatStanley at 11:28 on 15/04/11

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