Archive for October 2017

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Archive for October 2017

East Kent Network Update

National Express East Kent Network
 

The National Express East Kent Network successfully launched from our new site in Tilmanstone, close to  Deal on 31st July 2017. This network includes routes from Dover, Ramsgate, Folkestone, Deal and Canterbury into London using ten Scania 49 seat coaches with Caetano Levante bodies to standard National Express configuration and has an overall requirement of 34 drivers. Darren Priestley is the Operations Manager for the site, and assisted day to day by Duty Managers Lewis Byrne and Quin Dodkins with support from the team based in Gillingham.

We have recruited mainly new drivers to undertake the network of services, and also had 6 drivers transfer over from the previous operator of the routes. In addition, there has been support from our driver and operations team in Gillingham to ensure strong service delivery.

Lots of work is ongoing at the new site, and we look forward to further infrastructure developments over the coming months – and these include tarmac being laid, the installation of a toilet drop facility, further yard expansion to create additional space.

 
A bit more information on National Express scheduled services and the East Kent Network
National Express is the UK’s largest coach operator, it has over 900 stops across the UK and operates 19 million journeys a year.
 
2016 was a record year for National Express in terms of passenger numbers – we carried 19.5 million passengers, which is our biggest year ever, up by nearly 2 per cent on the previous year. Last year was the company’s 5th consecutive year of passenger growth despite very tough market conditions for bus and coach operators.
 
We also delivered our strongest Christmas to date last year. We brought in improved timetables, new Christmas Day locations and duplicated services and 60,000 extra coach seats over the festive season to deal with big demand for travel.
 

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Notting Hill and Wembley Success!

Kings Ferry - Notting Hill Carnival

Notting Hill Carnival

The Notting Hill Carnival is an annual event that has taken place in London since 1966 on the streets of Notting Hill, in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. This colourful event celebrates Caribbean Culture; artistic talents and creativity; the enhancement of community spirit and innovative platforms, overall embracing cultural diversity.

As always, these large scale events do not come without any dangers - due to recent unfortunate events and with large crowds of people, plenty of music, food and drink to get everyone into the party mood, like any event, there is always an element of risk. 

So similarly to your generic music festival, security and police patrols are on high alert. The MET Police were surrounding the Carnival, making sure the annual party goers were kept safe and able to enjoy their day.

We provided 220 coaches to transport the MET police to their required locations to police this large annual event from various stations across London and Kent. This was a huge job and logistically challenging due to the unknown duration each vehicle would be required for - but it was managed effectively by The Kings Ferry, to ensure we had the resources and plans in place for all possible outcomes on the day.

Due to the continual success of this job, the partnership that is now into its 10th year of the contract, has in the last two weeks been renewed again for another 18 months.

 

The Kings Ferry - England Wembley  -The Standard

England World Cup Qualifier at Wembley

Due to the threatened tube strikes that were to happen on the day of England's World Cup Qualifier against Slovenia, many fans were to be left without transport to Wembley Stadium from many mainline London Stations. 

On 29th September, we received a call that Wembley may require a high volume of coaches to transport these spectators from the mainline stations to the event and back. Alongside this, the supporters also required a booking platform to book onto coaches, and to ensure that event holders had a more accurate projection of the volume of vehicles required.

Throughout the very hectic week leading up to the big game, we had numerous conference calls involving Wembley, TFL, and National Express to discuss all the finer details that are involved in such a large scale task. The following week, we had the booking platform in place and working, actively taking bookings via National Express and over 80 coaches were held ready to carry out the required transport.

Discussions with TFL led to on-site staffing that was put into place to ensure passengers had guidance at the stations and knew the agreed pick up locations for the coaches.

On the Tuesday evening prior to the match, the strike was cancelled but Wembley asked for us to continue with the coach hires that had already been booked by passengers and hold a contingency number in case of any additional requirements.

When the event came round, everything ran smoothly, and the combined efforts of all involved allowed for smooth supporter transitions from rail, to coach and to reach the game, where England won 1-0 thanks to a late goal from Harry Kane, qualifying for the World Cup 2018 to be held in Russia!

Introducing the BRAND NEW VIP Coach

The Kings Ferry new VIP Coach

A warm welcome to the latest addition to our VIP fleet - introducing the stunning Irizar i8.

With a star lit rear lounge, kitchen facillties, a beautiful leather interior along with a state of the art entertainment system, this really is the perfect way to travel in style.

Already providing team transport for both Millwall and Fulham FC, our new coach is proving to be a popular choice. With colour changing LED lighting surrounding the interioir, this coach will suit any team. The rear lounge allows for important team bonding and tactical discussions prior to the match; with the high quality entertainment system helping your team get focused and match ready.

It's sleek, polished exterior will be the envy of your opposition as you turn up to the ground - arriving in style, knowing that you have already won off the field before you win on it.

The Kings Ferry VIP Coach

 

RouteOne Award Winners

Route One Award Winner

We are extremely proud to announce that we have been crowned winners of the RouteOne award for "Best Use of Technology (up to 200 vehicles)".

This technology that has been designed by our in-house Sales & Marketing team, has proven to be an integral part of our business. The systems intelligence and analytical database provides all teams with the essential knowledge to provide customers with the high quality services that they deserve and desire.

Marketing Manager Sam Adams said:

"Our new CRM system gives us the power to be pro-active with our sales strategy, with targeted marketing automation. It also enables our sales staff to manage their time and workload more effectively and provides valuable insights into forecasting for the management team due to the array of information available to them - ultimately improving customer experience. It has been a challenge to implement successfully into the business but we have done it and I think we are just scratching the surface of its potential."

There was some very stiff competition competing for the grand prize, all who have developed fantastic technology, improving their own business and the coach travel market.

The judges said: "Faced with an array of available technology operators are challenged to make the right choices for their business. This new award recognises those who have succeeded. By showing through results that smart administration truly enhances customer relations and satisfaction, The Kings Ferry has earned the accolade of winner in this category".

The Kings Ferry RouteOne Award Winner

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