First gets poetic

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First Bus has released what it says is a powerful poem and accompanying video along with poet George the Poet, celebrating the power of buses as a central pillar of local communities, in response to research which suggests that people are more afraid of connecting to people in their communities than ever before.

The newly commissioned research found that whilst 89% of people say that having a conversation with a stranger brightens their day, nine in 10 struggle to make conversation with strangers. Since many see buses as an important space for connecting with their community, First says it partnered with the spoken word performer to create an ‘ode to the bus,’ to remind Brits of the cultural and social significance of buses as the beating hearts of our communities and sustainable ways of moving within them.

George the Poet commented: “Buses have played a pivotal role in shaping who I am today. When I was young I had a long commute between home and school, and it introduced me to many life-long friends that I am still close with to this day, while also for helping form the foundations of my career as a poet.


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“During the hours spent on the bus, I would watch the world changing around me. I’ll never forget how those observations would inspire new lyrics, and shape my understanding of different communities. This gave me an affinity for the bus that I still have today. Working with First Bus on this piece of work has been a great reminder of the importance of shared spaces for our local communities, and opportunities for connection that they offer.”

Chief Commercial Officer at First Bus Simon Pearson commented “As a leading operator of bus routes across the UK, we are well aware of the power and significance buses hold in connecting people to their local communities, not just literally as a method of transport, but socially too. First Bus is a product of our amazing colleagues who work tirelessly in our depots behind the scenes and out on the road on our buses, and customers who opt to travel by bus and help create a greener future.

“It is an honour to be able to partner with such a highly-esteemed creative like George the Poet to help promote all the amazing benefits of bus travel, and it’s a delight to see some true stories of our First Bus communities come to life through his words and in the video itself.”

The video features a number of First Bus staff members from across the country who have incredible stories to tell, including Derek Milliken from First Scotland who saved the life of a member of the public whilst at work; Marie Warner and daughter Gemma, who both work as drivers for First Bus;

young driver Megan Copeland from First Aberdeen; Fauja Singh Roth from First Leeds, who is ‘not just a bus driver, but community hero,’ who donates his spare time to helping at his local gurdwara; Jakub Malick of First Essex, who saved the life of a member of the public whilst on the job; and Robert Burns from First Scotland, responsible for First Bus’ first ever pride liveried bus in Glasgow.

Watch the video at