Coventry and Oxford on track to become ‘UK’s first’ all-electric bus cities

The cities could be awarded up to £50 million each to introduce all-electric bus services as a result of an England-wide competition

Coventry and Oxford could soon become the first parts of the UK to run all-electric bus services.

The news comes after an England-wide electric bus competition, which would award up to £50 million to each area to replace its entire fleet of buses with all-electric versions, install new infrastructure, such as charging stations and pay for electric grid updates.

The government received 19 bids from across England to become the first all-electric bus town or city.

Applicants were asked to show how the plan would tackle an existing air quality problem and outline existing plans to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said: “As we build back greener from Covid-19, we can provide people with more environmentally-friendly transport and cleaner air.

“Coventry and Oxford could soon be at the forefront of our plans for a new era of bus services, helping us develop the green transport network of the future and support jobs right here in the UK.”

Andy Street, the Mayor of the West Midlands, said: “Turning all of Coventry’s bus fleet electric is not only a major boost to public transport in the city, but it will also help tackle the climate emergency we face both here in the West Midlands and the wider UK.”

Oxfordshire County Council Leader, Cllr Ian Hudspeth, said: “Oxfordshire’s bid comes at a time when our council is determined to take concerted climate action to cut vehicle air pollution and expand the provision of bus services with our Zero Emission Zone and Connecting Oxford plans.”

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