Back Britain's Coaches - success so far 19/05/2020

CPT's President Steve Whiteway writes our latest blog post, where he looks back at the last month of Back Britain's Coaches.

In my first blog post for CPT I am proud to be able to provide a recap of the Back Britain's Coaches campaign that was launched just over four weeks ago. It has been heart-warming to see the industry come together to support the campaign that was created in collaboration with coach operators, and with help from CPT members and non-members we have been able to put together the case for coach and raise awareness with MPs of the vital role of the coach industry.

Over 300 operators responded to our request for information, which helped us determine the level of support the industry needs from government. We have raised the issue with ministers and have been able to call on the government to provide a support package of £65m a month to help the coach tourism industry survive what could potentially be an 18 month winter.

Last week the government announced that the furlough scheme will be extended until October, and although we are waiting for more details, I hope this news will provide some relief for the industry and the 42,000 people it employs. These workers will have a key role to play when the industry can begin to return to normality, transporting 500,000 pupils daily, taking millions on holiday and making it possible for people to take trips to the theatre, sports events, and on educational trips, to name just a few examples.

I want to say thank you to everyone that has worked with us to campaign at a local level. Your efforts raising the issues facing the industry have resulted in Back Britain's Coaches receiving coverage in the press, with our members making appearance on the BBC evening news, local radio, and in the papers. With your help we've been able to run a social media campaign that has received engagement from operators and individuals both in and outside of the industry, and the message that we need to back Britain's coaches has been spread far and wide.

Please keep campaigning to continue building on the success that Back Britain's Coaches has had so far. In the resource centre on CPT's website there are lobbying materials, including template letters that you can use to help make the case at a local level with your MP. There are also social media graphics that you can use on Twitter, please do include the hashtag #BackBritainsCoaches so we can see your tweets and support them.

There is a long way to go but CPT will continue to be there battling for the coach industry.