After successfully managing the PR for a £38m public transport construction scheme, Christina was asked to provide marketing and communications expertise for an ambitious project using Government funding to construct an innovative bus rapid transit solution in a very congested and socially deprived part of Hampshire. Local authorities did not have a very good track record in embracing the concept of marketing at that time, and it was Christina’s job, to a great extent, to drag us into the 21st century.
If we were to convince members of the public that this was a viable project, she argued, we had to develop a brand that would differentiate it from ‘any old bus’ – something that would make them want to get out of their cars and try it. This would also, of course, give our partners and potential future funding sources the confidence that we could take £20m of Government money and deliver something really worthwhile. The result was the Eclipse Bus Rapid Transit network, launched to a formerly sceptical but now totally enthusiastic public, lauded by the trade press and even embraced by a very negative but influential regional newspaper.