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Residents and partygoers got their first glimpse of Luton’s new SOS Bus in action on St Patrick’s Day, March 17 2009.
The SOS Bus project is intended to create, in our opinion, one of the best mobile first aid and community vehicles anywhere in the UK.
The bright yellow converted single decker bus, originally donated by Arriva-Shires, will be parked in St. Georges’ Square from 2100 hours to 0330 hours every Friday and Saturday night. It will supply a “place of safety when one is needed” during Luton’s night time economy.
Working alongside the SOS Bus is a matching Vauxhall Vivaro mini bus which will be used to transport vulnerable people back to the SOS Luton Bus from anywhere in the town centre and High Town areas.
The SOS Luton Bus project is resourced entirely by CRB checked, uniformed, highly motivated, fully trained volunteers. So far 70 volunteers have been recruited, and, along with many other skills, East of England Ambulance Service will be training them all to be Community First Responders.
The SOS Luton Bus and SOS mini bus will belong and be run by the charity - the SLP, with the financial support of the SoLUTiOns partnership, Bedfordshire Police, the Criminal Justice Board, Bedfordshire and Luton Fire and Rescue Service, TKAP, East of England Ambulance Service, and local businesses Arriva, Vauxhall Motors, Motorbodies and Tesco.
The SOS Luton Bus will provide an imaginative and effective response to the needs of the people in the town’s pub and club land, and the SOS Bus volunteers will work alongside Lutonsafes’ Pubs and Clubs, Luton CCTV, the Street Pastors and all the emergency services to keep people safe.
The SOS Luton Bus is a partnership project lead by Luton’s Licensing Officer, Police Sergeant Ruth Connelly, Paula Morrison from Luton Borough Council and Carly Stokes from The SLP, who after seeing the positive results by SOS Bus projects in other towns throughout the UK, got together with partners to begin to raise money and support for the bus.