Laurie drives bus

40 years a Yellow Bus driver and 864,000 miles clocked – Laurie Blewer, centre, with colleagues (l-r) Dave Bowen, John McDonald, Mike Corbin, Sandi Marshall, Lawrie Blewer, Phil Pannell, Kevin Brolan, Martin Conder

Bus driver Laurie Blewer has notched up a remarkable 40 years’ service working for Yellow Buses – and he only joined for a temporary job.

In that time the popular 69-year-old has driven approximately 865,000 miles around Bournemouth, Poole, Christchurch and East Dorset.

That is equivalent to driving 35 times around the earth.

He joined the company aged 29 after being made redundant from his role as a Thames waterman – a job his father and grandfather did before him.

Despite passing retirement age, Laurie has no plans to ease off the accelerator and pull up his handbrake for the last time.

He quipped: “I have thought about retiring then I think about being at home with my wife and I think ‘no’.

“And now I have the challenge of getting past a million miles driving for Yellow Buses.

“I only joined as a temporary job – and I’m still looking! But I do enjoy it and I get on with all the passengers and my colleagues.”

Married to Susan with a son and granddaughter, Laurie enjoys working on cars in his spare time.

He said: “Since I started, the traffic has trebled I would say, but the buses have improved dramatically.

“When I began in 1978 it was like driving something from the Stone Age, but now they are just like driving a car.”

Phil Pannell, service delivery director for Yellow Buses, presented Laurie with a certificate and token of the company’s appreciation of his service.

He said: “To complete 40 years’ service with the same company is quite remarkable.

“Laurie has worked six days a week for almost all of his career since he began as a ticket inspector before moving behind the steering wheel.

“He is extremely popular among the staff and the passengers and has an impeccable record with us.

“Laurie is a rare gem and we hope he remains driving with us for years to come.”


Laurie Blewer, 40 years with Yellow Buses

Note to journalists:


For more information, please contact: Andrew Diprose, Director, Deep South Media Ltd, PR consultants to Yellow Buses, on 01202 534487, or Ed Baker on 01202 534487 or 07788 392965.

About Yellow Buses: Yellow Buses operates a fleet of 140 buses and 16 coaches with more than 410 staff.

The company carries just under 15m passengers a year with its vehicles operating nearly five million miles across the Bournemouth, Poole, Christchurch and East Dorset area.

Yellow Buses is part of RATP Group, the world’s fifth largest public transport provider.


RATP Dev in the United Kingdom and Ireland

The United Kingdom is a strategic market for RATP Dev with revenues in excess of £300 million and a workforce of over 4,500.

RATP Dev’s presence in the United Kingdom comprises the following activities:


  • RATP Dev London, through its subsidiaries London United, London Sovereign and Quality Line:

–        employs 3,400 staff

–        operates more than 1,000 buses under contract to Transport for London (TfL)

–        transports more than 200 million passengers per annum in the British capital


  • Under the Yellow Buses brand, RATP Dev’s subsidiary Bournemouth Transport operates award-winning commercial bus services in and around Bournemouth.  Further de-regulated bus services are provided also by the Bath Bus Company.


  • RATP Dev has significant coach operations, primarily through Epsilon Travel (Surrey) and Selwyns Travel (Cheshire).


  • RATP Dev is a major player in the hop-on, hop-off sightseeing bus tour activity.  Following its 2014 acquisition of The Original London Sightseeing Tour, RATP Dev now has operations of this kind in London, as well as Paris and New York.


  • In 2015, RATP Dev launched Slide, an innovative minibus service in Bristol, using digital technology to offer personalised transport to non-bus users on a route and at a time of their choosing via an app.


About RATP Dev

Founded in 2002, RATP Dev operates and maintains urban transportation systems in 14 countries on four continents (United Kingdom, France, Italy, Switzerland, Algeria, Morocco, South Africa, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, India, China, South Korea, the Philippines, and the United States of America). With more than 1.5 billion passengers travelling on its networks every year, RATP Dev demonstrates every day its extensive and renowned expertise in a wide range of mobility services, ranging from rail, regional express rail, tramway, to bus, cable car and sightseeing activities. RATP Dev leverages in France, outside of Paris, and across international markets, the technical expertise and experience of RATP Group, the leader in driverless and tramway operations and operator of the Paris network, one of the largest public transportation networks in the world.


About RATP Group

With nearly 16 million daily passengers worldwide, RATP Group is the fifth largest urban transportation operator in the world. With its 14 metro lines (including two driverless lines), two regional express rail lines, seven tramway lines and 350 bus lines, the multimodal network operated by RATP in the Paris region is the largest in the world to be managed by a single company.


RATP Group can devise, design and implement infrastructure development projects, operate and maintain networks irrespective of the mode of transportation (metro, regional train, tramway and bus) and develop innovative services to promote mobility (including passenger information, remote ticketing, pricing and customer marketing). The automation of the Paris metro’s line 1 completed at the end of 2012 is a world’s first and once again demonstrated RATP Group skill in concluding particularly complex projects.

RATP Group exports its know-how all over the world; in engineering through Systra, its subsidiary jointly owned with SNCF, in operations and maintenance via its wholly-owned RATP Dev subsidiary and in innovative services to promote mobility through its IXXI subsidiary.

RATP Group has a workforce of nearly 60,000 employees worldwide and in 2016 generated revenue of 5.4 billion euros.