Nottingham City Transport has unveiled its 23rd named bus today (3 May 2018), with Uni 34 – and former Driver of the Year winner – Safdar Ali, taking the honour.
The unveiling took place at the Company’s head office on Parliament Street to coincide with Safdar’s last day driving the Uni 34 bus to University Park Campus, which he has driven since the route started 12 years ago.
Joining NCT in 2000, Safdar has been a friendly and familiar face to University of Nottingham staff and students since 2006 when the 34 – then named “Unilink 34” began.
Starting as a weekday, term time only service every 12 minutes with 33 seat midi-buses, Safdar has played an important part in the success of the route, which has grown in popularity to now operate up to every 5 minutes on weekdays with 86 seat double deckers. An evening, weekend and out-of-term time service now also runs.
Prior to leaving the depot behind the wheel of his named bus on his last regular shift on Uni 34, Safdar said, “I have really enjoyed my time on the 34, seeing it grow over the years to become such a popular service. It’s been lovely to see the journey students make from arriving at University through until their graduation and I will miss them and the many staff who I’ve got to know”.
Anthony Carver-Smith, NCT Marketing Manager added, “Safdar is a fantastic ambassador for NCT and he has been a welcoming face to tens of thousands of students over the years on Uni 34. His dedication and commitment to his job is second to none and that’s what made him a very worthy Driver of the Year winner in 2016.”
After the Bank Holiday weekend, Safdar will join current NCT Driver of the Year, Aaron Johnson as a regular driver on Purple 89 between City, Sherwood, Bestwood Park and Rise Park.
Nottingham City Transport’s named bus recognise local heroes, Drivers of the Year, Olympians, Paralympians and an award winning musician, with a full list available at www.nctx.co.uk/busnames