The who’s who of the bus industry joined together to celebrate the respected UK Bus Awards on Wednesday (23 November), where Go North East was recognised in several categories.
Held on London’s South Bank and presented by BBC newsreader, Jane Hill, the annual industry affair profiles the achievements of national bus operators and their staff. Entering 14 categories and being nominated in seven, Go North East was the only regional company to make the shortlist.
Sophie Moorby and John Gordon from Go North East were both commended at the national event, for their success, hard work and star quality.
Winning bronze in the Young Manager of the Year category was Sophie Moorby, from Ponteland. Aged just 23, she is the youngest person in the company’s 103-year history to become a depot manager, currently overseeing operations in Washington. Sophie joined Go North East’s graduate scheme in 2014.
Judges cited her positive attitude and confidence, new ideas and hard work as reasons why she took home an accolade. They were extremely impressed with Sophie and what she has achieved; explaining her straight forward and no nonsense approach have served her well. Judges felt she has enormous potential for a very successful career in the bus industry and they would like to see her name in the running for an award in the future.
John Gordon, aged 56 from Gateshead, was given a special commendation for outstanding service in the Unsung Heroes category. He is a bus station manager working between Eldon Square, one of the busiest stations in the region and the MetroCentre.
Judges commended his comprehensive route knowledge, allowing for the smoothest possible operation and communication, quick-thinking, and sign language training that helped him communicate with hearing-impaired passengers. They also praised John for his dedication – particularly learning sign language in his own time.
In addition to Sophie and John’s achievements, Go North East was a finalist in five other categories.
These included the ‘buses do their bit’ entry in the Environment award, the popular Castles Express service for Making Buses a Better Choice and, the service delivery centre in the New Horizons category. Go North East was also a finalist for its submissions relating to Sustained Marketing Excellence and Top National Bus Depot.
Success at the UK Bus Awards comes just a day after Go North East won gold for inclusive tourism at the North East Tourism awards.
“We’re overjoyed to be recognised, at not one but two awards this week – both of which are of incredibly high calibre and highly sought after,” explains Stephen King, Head of Marketing and Retail at Go North East.
"Our special congratulations go to Sophie and John for their individual achievements at the national UK Bus Awards - both are extremely hard working and dedicated team members; they are very deserving winners.”