The last two buses to complete Orkney’s low-carbon fleet have arrived on the island.
Orkney Islands Council now has 34 new fully-accessible and low carbon buses that will transport residents around the island.
Seven of the nine new Optare buses were delivered in December, and the final two have now arrived.
These buses will serve the less frequently used routes across the islands, while 26 larger Volvo buses will be used for busier routes. The larger vehicles will also be used for school transport.
The new buses are a joint venture between Orkney Council and operator Stagecoach worth £5.8 million.
‘Low carbon buses for the benefit of our residents’
All the new buses are equipped with contactless payment and passengers will be able to track buses live from their mobiles to stay informed of delays or changes.
The fleet will operate out of Stagecoach’s depot located in Kirkwall.
The arrival of the buses also coincides with the new scheme to encourage young people to use public transport by offering it free to under-22s.
Development and infrastructure committee chairman Graham Sinclair said: “It’s gratifying to see the new fleet on the road – it’s a milestone which reflects very hard work by our transport team to secure modern, accessible and low carbon buses for the benefit of our residents, including school pupils, public bus users and visitors.
“These buses are an environmentally advanced and cost-effective solution for Orkney’s transport network right now.
“But we look forward to building further on that in the near future, by exploring the potential of external grant funding to take advantage of Orkney’s renewables resources and bring onboard green hydrogen and electric powered buses when feasible.”