“All that effort and you have one bus to show for it”

February 26, 2012 1:10 pm

Dear Boris,

I am writing to ask how you can justify the extraordinary cost and diversion of resources of procuring the ‘new bus’, which has come in at a price of £1.4 million per bus.

Why are you spending £1.4million on a single bus whilst raising bus fares by 50% across your term in office, cutting police and not even doing the job full-time, preferring to hold down a second job earning £250,000 from the Telegraph?

Somewhere along the line you seem to have lost touch. Four years and £11 million after your election, the new bus for London is exactly that, a single bus. All that effort and you have one bus to show for it.

Should the full number of these new buses finally reach the road, it will still only be eight buses out of a fleet of 7000 across London, at a cost of £1.4million per bus. That compares to the price of a conventional double-decker of around £190,000.  Riding this bus is surely the most expensive bus ticket in history.

With 62 seats at a cost of £1.4million, the cost per seat is £22,580. At £22,695, you can buy a brand new 3 series BMW.

Perhaps, if you had devoted as many hours to holding down fares for every Londoner as you have spent on this bus, my constituents would be a lot better off.

Yours sincerely

David Lammy MP

  • Michaeljamesbird

    Fare play, Lammy

  • Quiet_Sceptic

    This is either blatant politicking or, even more worrying, a display of how little understanding some Labour MPs have of manufacturing.

    A quick internet search shows that the contract placed with Wrightbus was for the development and construction of 5 prototypes for around £7.8M or £1.5M per prototype. The actual cost of the production busses is estimated at around £300k, higher than
    standard buses but then this bus is customised to London Transports
    requirements and incorporates expensive features like Hybrid technology.

    Most of that money will have gone into the design of the bus,  design and selection of all the various systems and sub-components and designing of production process, tooling etc.

    Designing and bringing new products to market costs money, lots of money, the big complaint made by the Left about business is its failure to invest in new products and in R&D but when TfL does, the politicians which should be natural supporters of the programme come out with ill-informed attacks.

    The New Routemaster looks to be a quality product made in the UK, instead of running it down, Labour ought to be supporting it.

  • AnotherOldBoy

    Any tendency to think better of Mr Lammy MP after last summer’s riots is eneded by this silly piece.  There will, of course, be many, many more of these splendid buses.  Only an idiot or someone who takes the public for idiots would put all the costs of developing a new bus on the first few. 

    The design is excellent: even the Guardian thinks so! See http://www.guardian.co.uk/artanddesign/2012/feb/23/routemaster-london-bus-new?INTCMP=SRCH

    And after yesterday’s revelations about the tax arrangements of his main rival, Mr Johnson can be confident that he will be there to order more and more of Borismasters!

    (P.S. I look forward to reading on this site the views of those who have attacked any arrangement which reduces an individual’s exposure to income tax about the revelations about Mr Livingstone.)

  • AlanGiles

    The prototype starts in passenger service today (Monday):

    http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/standard/article-24038683-return-of-the-routemaster.do 

    The original prototype Routemaster ran on the Route 2 in November 1956 and it was two years before the first of the fleet started in regular service in the autumn of 1958. I’m a mine of useless information!

  • Chaskañawi

    Borris Johnson has been a very naughty boy indeed. May I suggest, David ‘smackthebaby’ Lammy, that instead of zealously “disiplining” your 3 year old, you should give Johnson a smack?

  • Pingback: Ken Livingstone v Boris Johnson: the February truth audit – Telegraph Blogs()

Latest

  • News Polling Labour could benefit from Green tactical voting, poll suggests

    Labour could benefit from Green tactical voting, poll suggests

    A YouGov poll for The Times Red Box has found that Labour could do well from tactical Green voting next May. The poll asked 4,335 respondents which party they would most like to win in their constituency, and also which party they think they will end up voting for. A third of those people said they would like the Greens to win in their area said that they’d most likely vote Labour next year. This doesn’t necessarily mean that these […]

    Read more →
  • News Lansley named worst health secretary, Bevan named best

    Lansley named worst health secretary, Bevan named best

    The work Andrew Lansley did for the NHS has finally received proper recognition. The British Medical Journal (BMJ) have named him the worst Health Secretary. A questionnaire of 50 of the country’s leading doctors and healthy experts led to Lansley being bestowed this title, while this same group of medical practitioners chose Aneurin Bevan as the best. Lansley, who was the Health Secretary between 2010 and 2012, was named by 15 of those asked as the worst person to occupy the post. […]

    Read more →
  • News Burnham asks Government to release A&E figures

    Burnham asks Government to release A&E figures

    Andy Burnham, Shadow Health Secretary is asking Health Secretary, Jeremy Hunt, to release data that will allow the public to see how A&E departments cope over the Christmas and New Year period. This comes after news that from this Friday NHS England will stop publishing weekly performance figures for three weeks (although they can still be obtained from hospital trusts). The data usually published includes the number of patients attending A&E departments, the numbers waiting too long to be seen; […]

    Read more →
  • Comment Goodwill to all – in all the ways we can

    Goodwill to all – in all the ways we can

    Tis the season… I was really pleased to go to the launch of LabourList’s new pamphlet written by an inspiring group of candidates. Having read it, I feel the future is in good hands. I have hope – something I have been struggling with lately. I strongly recommend you all read it. At the launch event, one of the speakers – forgive me I can’t remember who – said something that seems so obvious and uncontroversial I was surprised at what […]

    Read more →
  • Featured The campaign victories of 2014

    The campaign victories of 2014

    As we start looking to the new year (or at least the bit before May), I thought it was time for a reminder of the campaign victories of 2014. It’s been a bleak year in a lot of ways: a housing crisis, more eye-watering cuts, the rise of UKIP and human rights atrocities abroad. But there have been significant wins too, none of which would have been possible without the hard work and determination of campaigners. Although Class is a […]

    Read more →