Politicians and the industry have paid tribute to the efforts of coach and bus drivers to keep services running during the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic.

Coach drivers have been recognised for their efforts in keeping key workers moving, transporting supplies and collecting those returning to the UK from abroad. Bus drivers have been acknowledged for delivering journeys to and from work and enabling users to make other vital trips throughout the pandemic.

The Confederation of Passenger Transport will be sharing messages of support for the industry via its Twitter feed, @CPT_UK, throughout Tuesday 5 May. It is encouraging people to add their own story or message of thanks by using the hashtags #ThankYouCoachWorkers or #ThankYouBusWorkers.

CEO Graham Vidler has paid tribute to drivers’ efforts throughout the crisis. Mr Vidler adds that without the industry’s team effort “the emergency network for key workers would grind to a halt.”

Politicians have also thanked drivers for their efforts. Transport Minister Baroness Vere says: “The coach and bus industry is absolutely vital in our fight against the virus: Helping to transport staff to the front line, ensuring people can make essential journeys to pick up food and medicine, and delivering essential supplies across the country.

“To all our coach and bus drivers, along with all the teams working hard behind the scenes to ensure that every journey is clean, safe and on time: Thank you.”

In Scotland, Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity Michael Matheson adds: “I thank all coach and bus operators for all they are doing to keep people moving on essential journeys.

“I know there are countless examples of staff going above and beyond to help respond to this outbreak. We are grateful for all of your efforts.”

Mayor of the West Midlands Andy Street has also paid tribute to the efforts of staff. “Buses in particular are the backbone of our public transport network. I want to say a huge thank you to every driver, engineer, cleaner and manager who is out on the front line helping others.

“It is an incredible challenge, but thanks to the hard work and dedication of so many unsung heroes like our transport workers, we will get through this.”