Uno (bus company)
Uno buses at St Albans in July 2010
|Slogan||The university bus for everyone|
|Parent||University of Hertfordshire|
|Headquarters||Hatfield Business Park|
London Borough of Barnet
London Borough of Brent
London Borough of Camden
London Borough of Enfield
London Borough of Harrow
|Service area||Greater London
|Service type||Bus services|
Uno (formerly UniversityBus) is a bus service operated by the University of Hertfordshire, serving members of the general public, and also its own students and staff (at a discounted rate). The service was set up in 1992, growing out of a shuttle service previously operated for students at Wall Hall College located near Watford connecting them to the other campuses of the University and the Polytechnic (Hatfield) before it.
It provides student transport to the university from local areas as well as improving east-west travel across Hertfordshire and has opened up new links from North London. Services have expanded as the University has closed outlying sites at Watford and Hertford and developed the new de Havilland Campus on the site of the former Hatfield Aerodrome, Hatfield. Other developments on this site, including business premises for companies such as Veolia, DHL and EE Limited have also provided passengers. Uno also operate urban bus networks in St Albans and Northampton, as well as a network of routes between Milton Keynes, Bedford and Flitwick for Cranfield University.
Uno was set up as an 'arms length' company by the University of Hertfordshire in 1992. It has its own Board of Directors and is expected to run on a fully commercial basis.
In 2005 it was re-branded Uno and the buses were repainted pink and purple, a departure from the previous black and white livery. According to the University's student newspaper Universe, the reason for the re-branding "is to have a name that reflects the wider market the buses serve in the community, basically not just for the inhabitants of the University of Hertfordshire".
Shortly after purchasing the St Albans operations of Centrebus in 2008, Uno helped to found a voluntary partnership of local authorities, the university and the bus and rail operators serving the city with the aim of co-ordinating and improving public transport across St Albans. The partnership uses powers under the most recent Transport Act as a Quality Network Partnership but is known publicly as 'Network St Albans'. Uno is currently the second largest bus operator in Hertfordshire.
On 20 April 2009, Uno recast many of its services to integrate a number of the former Centrebus routes. Further changes took place on 28 September 2009, following the opening of the new University Of Hertfordshire Forum. These changes included improvements to late evening services and the extension of operating hours until as late as 3:30am for a select few routes. The main timetable change each year takes place in September to coincide with the start of the school, college and university academic year start.
In September 2012, Uno commenced operating in Northampton, initially taking over routes 18 and 19, both of which serve The University of Northampton. A third service, route 21, began operating in 2013, covering some of Northampton's eastern district and serving Northampton College.
Previous route changes
In March 2008, Uno purchased Centrebus's St Albans garage, taking over all Centrebus routes operating from there, including the S St Albans City route network, PB1 (a Potters Bar local route), various routes connecting St Albans with outlying towns and housing estates and a number of schools services provided under contract to Hertfordshire County Council.
In April 2009, several former Centrebus services were integrated into the main network (mainly as services 620 and 621) while one further route (304) provided under contract to Hertfordshire County Council was transferred to Arriva Shires & Essex.
In March 2010, a number of the routes around Hatfield and Welwyn Garden City, that only ran a couple of times a day or on one day a week, were lost to Sullivan Buses. The evening 620 service contract was also lost to Arriva Shires & Essex. The 694 service, introduced in September 2009 as a park and ride service between College Lane and Stanborough Lakes in WGC, was axed completely.
In September 2011, changes were made to routes 607, 610, 615, 625, 635, 658, 659 (frequency changes/new services); route 700 (reduction in service as result of 625/635 changes; routes 602, 603, 622, 634, 636 and 712 (general timing changes) and withdrawal of route 641, with assurances that the peak hour connection would be kept on the route 341.
However, in January 2012, the peak hour connection was lost from 341, along with shortening of some early and late journeys on the 602, 603, 620, 621, 622, 625, 635, 658 and PB1 services; the withdrawal of routes 604 and 634 outside of peak; and changing all evening 644 buses to run via Barnet via route 614).
In March 2015, Uno took the 797 Greenline route that previously operated from Stevenage to London Victoria (Green Line Coach Station) on, operating a shortened version of the route between London and Hatfield, on weekdays.
Garages and buses
Uno operates from garage purpose built in 2003 at Gypsie Moth Avenue, Hatfield Business Park. Following the takeover of Centrebus' St Albans operations, Uno continued to operate them from the St Albans garage. However, this was subsequently closed and operations consolidated into Hatfield.
As a result of winning the Northampton University contracts a depot has opened at the Park Campus of the university by September 2012. A similar arrangement also operates at Cranfield University following initiation of services between Milton Keynes and Bedford in September 2013.
Current bus types in use with Uno:
- Single deck
- Optare Solo (both standard and diesel/electric hybrids)
- Dennis Dart / with Plaxton Pointer, Marshall C27 and Wright Handybus bodywork
- Dennis Dart SLF / with Caetano Nimbus, Plaxton/Transbus/Alexander Dennis Pointer 2/MPD and Wright Crusader bodywork
- DAF/VDL SB120 / Wright Cadet
- Scania OmniCity
- Scania OmniLink
- Mercedes-Benz O530 Citaro (mostly rigid, supplemented by a number of former-London artics)
- Wright StreetLite
- Alexander Dennis Enviro200 Dart
- Double deck
- DAF/VDL DB250 with Optare Spectra (low floor), East Lancs Myllennium Lowlander and Wright Pulsar Gemini bodywork
- Dennis Trident 2 with Plaxton President and Alexander ALX400 bodywork
- Scania N94UD / East Lancs OmniDekka
- Scania N230UD / Optare Olympus
The company participates in various county-wide ticketing schemes where appropriate, such as Plusbus (discounted combined rail and bus tickets), Intalink Explorer (a ticket allowing unlimited travel around Hertfordshire), discounted travel for children with a Hertfordshire SaverCard.
- News of Bus Service Changes Northamptonshire County Council.
-  Uno timetable for route C1
- Public Bus services Sullivan Buses
- "Timetable changes from 5 September 2011". Retrieved 7 February 2012.
- "Timetable changes from 9 Jan 2012". Uno. Retrieved 7 February 2012.
- A degree of relief as University of Hertfordshire steps in to save 797 bus The Comet 20 February 2015
- "Uno, Hatfield" Buses issue 723 June 2015 page 95
- Tender News Bus Talk issue 31 December 2014 (Go-Ahead London)
- "English Majors: Notable Independents 2007" British Bus Publishing