Transdev in Burnley pays tribute to unsung COVID-19 heroes in the UK


Colourful bus covered with photos of NHS teams and key workers takes to the road.

They’re working hard for Burnley during the Coronavirus pandemic – and their efforts to keep vital services going are recognised in a moving tribute by the town’s leading bus operator to local NHS (National Health Service) teams and key workers.

Transdev in Burnley has teamed up with local newspaper the Burnley Express to create a specially liveried ‘Burnley Heroes’ bus to remind everyone of the important role NHS staff and key workers have in our everyday lives, from postal workers to police officers, carers to cleaners – as they maintain vital services.

The finished bus, resplendent in gleaming red with a blue NHS heart and rainbow, carries photos of local key workers and health service staff. Each was nominated by proud friends and relatives to appear on the sides of the vehicle via social media.

Vital work by the bus firm’s own teams to keep transport links running for key workers and those needing to reach food shops and essential services is also recognised on the back of the bus with pictures of some of its drivers, engineers and support staff based at its Queensgate depot.

The ‘Burnley Heroes’ bus made a VIP visit to Burnley General Teaching Hospital this week to give proud NHS staff the first opportunity to see their images on the completed bus.

Pictured: Burnley General Teaching Hospital midwife Rachel Magee-Thorpe with her own image on the side of Transdev’s ‘Burnley Heroes’ bus.

As key workers ourselves, our drivers and support teams know first-hand how important it is to keep on serving local people by helping others who need to make a journey, including to and from work or to pick up food or access services. We know there are many unsung heroes doing all kinds of jobs right now who deserve our community’s thanks, and so we decided to recognise them by covering our ‘Burnley Heroes’ bus with their photos, along with the jobs they do – with our amazing NHS workers given pride of place.

In partnership with the Burnley Express, we invited nominations to appear on this very special bus, and we’re delighted with the positive response from so many people who clearly share our desire to recognise those who do so much for us all. We’ve already had an amazing reaction to our ‘Burnley Heroes’ bus – and we’ll be creating more Heroes buses across the North, in each of the towns we serve, working with local media partners to create a fitting tribute to the often unsung heroes of our communities.

Alex Hornby, CEO of Transdev Blazefield 

 This is a great tribute by The Burnley Bus Company to the care, compassion and resilience being shown by NHS staff and key workers in our community. Our team of over 8,000 staff at ELHT includes 2,500 in Burnley. They are pulling out all the stops to provide safe, personal and effective care to our patients every day, and I thank each and every one of them.

The NHS is doing a fantastic job and there’s no way we could do this without the support of key workers in the wider community. I hope the ‘Burnley Heroes’ bus will make all who see it pause to think for a moment about the vitally important work being done to keep our community going. We’re so grateful for their support. I hope that the contribution of NHS staff and all the other carers and key workers will always be remembered, and they’ll continue to be held up as the heroes that they are.

Kevin McGee, Chief Executive of the East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust (ELHT)

More information on the ‘Burnley Heroes’ bus, and up to date travel information and advice during the Coronavirus pandemic, is available online

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