Top Small Fleet Operator

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The winners of our awards for coach operation will deliver consistently excellent customer service. The operators will demonstrate their success through sustained effort.

They will show that they:

  • are financially sound
  • maintain high operational and engineering standards
  • give priority to the Health and Safety of staff and passengers through comprehensive risk management
  • invest in their fleet and staff
  • form effective partnerships
  • identify with and respond to the communities they serve
  • always strive to sustain and grow the market for coaches and coach services.

There are three categories, based on fleet size (see below for the definitions). From the winners of these three awards, the judges will decide on an overall winner, who will be UK Coach Operator of the Year.

It will be necessary for the organisers and judging panels to assess which category nominated operators fall into: fleet size will be determined by the number of 'O' licence disks held according to the VOSA database. This will be followed up by a judging process, including 'mystery shopping' the nominated operators to test their commitment to customer service. Where operators are nominated by their customers, the operators will also be invited to submit information to the judges.

One of the modern fleet run by Anthony's TravelWinner, Gold Award

Anthony's Travel

Established in 1985 and now running 16 vehicles, Cheshire based Anthony's Travel describes itself as a unique family-owned coach operation, which makes its own path in the industry, remaining ahead of the game and striving to deliver the very best in coach travel experience for its clients, community partners and stakeholders. The company has combined strong branding and unique marketing to become one of the most recognised small coach operators in the country, priding itself on a personal yet professional family approach for a wide variety of clients.

The judges commented that Anthony's Travel continues to punch above its weight for the size of the company and demonstrates a genuine involvement in the community.

One of the fleet is readied for departure in the Carol Peters 
depot.Winner, Silver Award

Carol Peters Travel

Carol Peters Travel is a family run business in Kent and is celebrating its 20th year of operation this year. It runs 11 vehicles and employs 15 staff across its two busy booking offices, in Westgate-on-Sea and Deal, and its depot in Ramsgate where the vehicles are maintained. Since Carol Peters Travel set up its Facebook page, it has brought a younger customer and more families are booking with the company. Two videos have been produced which have brought increases in sales and the company has recently started short live videos on its Facebook page.

The judges were pleased to see the big investment the company has made and noted the high number of public nominations for this company.

One of the delightful vintage coaches in the Eastons fleet.Winner, Bronze Award

AW Eastons Coaches

Established in 1953, AW Eatsons Coaches is proud to be one of Norfolk's longest established family operators of quality coach holidays and day excursions alongside luxury and vintage coach hire. Eastons operates a fleet of 15 vehicles and puts its successful operation down to the dedication of its strong team of nine full time and eight part time coach drivers working alongside eight full time office staff, who the company says are the driving force behind its success. The company purchased three brand new luxury touring coaches as well as adding another coach to its private hire fleet last year, and restoration continues on five more vintage vehicles, two of which it hopes to have on the road next year to add to the three it already runs.

The judges noted the company's professional image and continued investment in new and vintage vehicles.

A ride with Busy Bus is more of an adventure, 
like this trip to North Wales.Specially Commended


BusyBus was established in 2003 in Chester and Liverpool and currently operates five 17 seater minibuses and minicoaches. The company specialises in exploring areas and routes not accessible to full-size coaches with all tours being carefully researched and prepared taking the vehicle size into consideration. BusyBus runs minibus and coach 'adventure' sightseeing tours, cruise excursions (from the ports of Liverpool, Holyhead, Greenock, Invergordon and Leith), Three Peaks and other sporting challenges and themed excursions holidays as well as general minibus and driver private hire.

A shot of one of the fleet from Hythe-Waterside.Finalist

Hythe and Waterside Coaches

Southampton based Hythe and Waterside Coaches began trading in 1982 and intends adding two more vehicles to its fleet this year, bringing the total to 10. The company employs 16 members of staff and is steadily expanding.

Top Small Fleet Operator

Who could be nominated?

This award was open to independent operators of coaches holding 20 or fewer 'O' Licence discs, not in the sole or majority ownership of a public limited company (plc).

... and by whom?

Group organisers and other coach industry customers who hire coaches on an occasional or regular basis were asked to nominate the coach company which had delivered the best service to their groups. Self-nomination was also acceptable.


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