Armed Forces Day: From soldier to bus driver

You might think driving a bus is different from driving heavy-duty military vehicles, but many have left behind a life in the forces in order to get people moving in civvy street.

Bus driver, Rob Svennson, who served for 16 years with the Royal Signals, will be attending Armed Forces Day events in Liverpool on his day off.

Rob, 49, from Wirral, completed two tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan and now works from Arriva’s depot in Birkenhead.

Rob said he walked past the Army Careers Centre and saw a picture of a soldier canoeing and that attracted him to the military. He said, “Sadly, there were no canoes, but I enjoyed my time providing military communications.

“I’ve been a bus driver since 2013 and it’s different from being in the forces, but what’s similar is – we wear a uniform and have great banter.

“I think it’s great that Arriva allows servicemen and women free bus travel on June 24 as I think they do a lot for the country but they need some extra recognition.”

Arriva says its employees are passionate about showing their support and appreciation for our military personnel – past and present.

Cora Woodhouse, director of marketing and customer services at Arriva, said, “We’re proud to offer military service people free travel on our buses to celebrate Armed Forces Day 2023.

“I hope everyone who’s in or has been in the Armed Forces takes the opportunity to use our buses – whether they’re attending an Armed Forces Day event or whether they need to get around that day.

“As a business, we’re proud and grateful for their brave and dedicated work done by service personnel and we recognise the important roles they have played in serving and protecting our country.”

Travel information is available via this link: Armed Forces Day | Arriva Bus UK

Arriva is offering free travel to past and present members of the Armed Forces on all its bus services to thank them on Armed Forces Day, Saturday 24 June, 2023.

The commitment to free travel for the Armed Forces is supported by the many Arriva employees who have served in the military in the past.

Serving military personnel (both regular and reservists) veterans and cadets will be allowed free travel on Arriva services all day on Armed Forces Day. When boarding the bus, they will need to show the driver their Armed Forces identification card, Veteran identification card, or Ministry of Defence-issued Veteran’s Badge.

Image: Rob Svennson at the Laird Street Depot, Birkenhead

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