Today’s apprentices are looking for cost-effective and environmentally friendly ways to travel. We look at the options in the Liverpool City Region.
The Liverpool City Region is leading the way in environmentally-friendly transport. Today’s apprentices are keen to travel to college and work using transport that gets them where they want to be quickly. Importantly, they are keen that it does not contribute to climate change. It also needs to be economic.
So what are the most popular modes of transport for apprentices across the Liverpool City Region? The first is buses and there are plans to improve their already impressive carbon footprint. Currently 70% of the bus fleet has low emissions thanks to the use of cleaner engines, hybrid and electric power and biomethane gas. Future plans that are a key part of the Metro Mayor’s ‘Vision for Bus’ is a project that seeks to bring 20 hydrogen powered double decker buses to the streets of the Liverpool City Region. Plans for the hydrogen bus project also include the building of refuelling facilities, which will be the first of their kind in the North West.
Rail travel is another popular form of transport for apprentices. Merseyrail has been recognised as the best performing regional rail operator three years’ running. Their trains carry more than 100,000 passengers a day. Liverpool Central station is one of the busiest outside London. Their modern day trains have been designed specifically for the Merseyrail network. The fleet includes 52 brand new electric trains, reducing rail travel’s carbon footprint. They come with a host of modern day comforts and features like the innovative sliding step technology. The first of the new trains arrived in the Liverpool City Region in January.
Perhaps the popularity of buses and trains for apprentices is how affordable they are. This is also helped by the Apprentice Travel Card. The travel card gives young people, between 18 and 24 years old, who are enrolled in apprenticeships half price bus or train travel across Merseyside when buying weekly and four-weekly Solo tickets or weekly and monthly Rail pass tickets.
The bike to work scheme has been running since 2003 and one of the first to benefit from it was Shaun Roberts, then an apprentice at Liverpool Chamber. The scheme provides the use of a bike, equipment and training. Shaun used this to cycle to and from the Chamber on a regular basis. Today many more apprentices are taking to two wheels. This is being supported by a growing walking and cycling network across the Liverpool City Region. A 600 Km walking and cycling network is planned. It will consist of new and upgraded routes. Key infrastructure will include segregated cycle lanes, signage and special traffic signalling.
Some apprentices have been trying out the innovative e-scooter pilot scheme in the region. There are 400 hundred e-scooters available for hire in the city centre and surrounding areas. This includes Toxteth, Dingle and Kensington as well as key transport hubs and hospitals. The year-long pilot scheme started in October 2020. It is a joint initiative of Liverpool City Region Combined Authority, Liverpool City Council and e-scooter company VOI. When you hire an e-scooter you just leave it on the street at the end of your journey. A GPS tracker signals to the VOI team to collect them.
If you would like more information on how to travel as an apprentice or any other information about apprenticeships, the Apprenticeship Support by Be More Team provides impartial information and advice on apprenticeships across the Liverpool City Region.