Next stage for Aberdeen hydrogen project

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Following his test drive of Wrightbus’ new hydrogen double-decker, Jonathan Welch spoke to some of the key figures in the hydrogen project, including Wrightbus Chairman Jo Bamford

It doesn’t seem like five years since CBW featured a test drive of the then-new Van Hool A330H single deckers which led the way in this EU-wide project to promote and develop the use of hydrogen in public transport. As reported earlier in the year, those buses have now served their purpose, and were withdrawn from service in January. After some delay, their replacements are now starting to arrive in the city in the form of Wrightbus Streetdeck double-deckers, representing a world premiere in being the first double-deck vehicles so powered. As with the Van Hools, the new buses are part funded by the European Union’s JIVE project, which aims to promote commercialisation of hydrogen buses through joint procurement between cities. Other cities which will follow Aberdeen’s lead include London and Birmingham, with Dundee and Brighton & Hove being lead partners in JIVE2.

The new £8.3m project has been funded by Aberdeen City Council, the Scottish Government, and the European Union (FCH JU), with an investment of about £500,000 per vehicle.

Old meets new as Aberdeen’s first hydrogen double-decker meets one of the buses it will replace, Platinum-liveried 37642 en route from Peterculter to Tilydrone outside Aberdeen City Council’s Marischal College headquarters. JONATHAN WELCH

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