Greyhound buses take to the British roads

Author: By Peter Woodman, Press Association

Transport company FirstGroup is introducing the famous brand next month, with
the first services running from London to Portsmouth and Southampton.

Fares will start from £1.50, including a 50p booking fee, and travellers will
get leather seats, free wi-fi, air conditioning and complimentary newspapers.

The hourly services to the two Hampshire cities will start on September 14 and
Scottish-based FirstGroup hopes to add further destinations next year.

The Hampshire services will depart from Victoria in central London and will
integrate with ferry services to and from the Isle of Wight.

The non-stop journeys to Portsmouth and Southampton will take less than two
hours.

FirstGroup showed off the first of the Greyhound 41-seat coaches in London
today.

Each of the coaches will have names based on popular American songs dedicated
to women such as Sweet Caroline, Barbara Ann, Jolene and Peggy Sue.

The company’s chief executive Sir Moir Lockhead said today: “For 95 years
Greyhound has been an icon of American life carrying millions of people
across the USA and Canada.

“Since FirstGroup took over Greyhound in 2007, we have hoped to bring this
famous brand across the Atlantic and I am absolutely delighted to reveal the
first authentic Greyhound coaches in the UK.

“Although built on a venerable and famous brand, these vehicles will offer the
latest in customer service and comfort.”

FirstGroup bought Greyhound’s parent company Laidlaw International for £1.9
billion.

Popular with backpackers and those wanting to make long but inexpensive
journeys in America, Greyhounds were started in Minnesota in 1914 by
Swedish-born Carl Wickman.

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