Shadow Transport Minister Visits McGill's Buses

2 weeks ago Wed 7th Feb 2024

Transport Minister

Measures to increase bus patronage and the investment in zero-emission electric buses by McGill’s Group were amongst the topics of discussion during a visit by Shadow Transport Minister, Graham Simpson MSP, to the company’s Johnstone depot.


Mr Simpson met with McGill’s Group staff and Managing Director, Alex Hornby, for a tour of the depot and also visited Paisley to observe the McGill’s operation and meet customers and other colleagues.


Funding for the bus industry was a key subject of conversation, as were prioritisation measures that can allow buses to travel more easily around towns and cities and in turn, increase usage by passengers.


In 2021/22, bus operators across Scotland shared £51million in core funding from government for delivering 79% of public transport journeys - 234 million journeys in total. Over the same period, rail in Scotland received £1.4billion from the public purse for delivering 16% of public transport journeys.


Graham Simpson MSP said: "It was great to visit McGill's. We discussed a number of issues, not least the electrification of buses in Scotland. McGill's has more than 100 electric buses and Paisley has the greatest proportion of electric buses anywhere in Britain.


"We also discussed some of the funding issues which affect the industry. Thanks to Alex Hornby and the team for their time."


Alex Hornby, Managing Director of McGill’s Group, said:

“We were pleased to welcome the Shadow Minster for Transport to our Johnstone depot and chat through the latest developments at McGill’s Group and on transport policy more generally.


“Buses are so important to Scotland’s communities and economy and it is vital that we as a company represent the views of the sector to Scotland’s policymakers.


“McGill’s has more than 100 electric buses across four depots and these zero-emission vehicles have been a huge hit with passengers over the last two years.


“We want to increase the number of people who leave the car keys at home and choose to use these buses and we’re glad to take the time to speak to Mr Simpson, as we do with other MSPs from across the political spectrum, to enable that to happen.”