Lothian buses the driving force behind Edinburgh's good deeds

In Edinburgh, it seems good deeds are spreading across the city, thanks in part to the selfless actions of the Capital's bus drivers.

Friday, 3rd November 2017, 6:00 am
Updated Monday, 11th December 2017, 11:19 pm
Daniel Gilfillan has been selected for an award
Daniel Gilfillan has been selected for an award

The Evening News has been inundated with heartfelt gestures from bus drivers after launching a campaign to recognise those who go the extra mile for their customers.

A good deed by a stranger can go a long way and the Capital is spoilt for choice for who will be the People’s Champion – an award looking to celebrate the firm’s outstanding random acts of kindness.

The first six nominees have touched the hearts of the community with their kindness which has not been forgotten by the public.

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Daniel Gilfillan has been selected for showing a member of the public to a bus stop who was asking for directions initially. The nomination said Daniel was “a lovely guy and a credit to the company”.

Longstone driver William Walker has been nominated twice for the People’s Champion award with nurse Carron Gardiner recalling his assistance on Christmas Day 2015.

She said: “My dog Pacha and I went to get the last bus home from my sister’s house on the east side of Edinburgh.

“Willie was the driver that night. When I got on, I realised it was a part route. I live on the west side of Edinburgh and with it being the holidays I knew I was in for an expensive taxi ride home.

“Telling Willie this, he said ‘not to worry’. He lived not too far away from me and that he would make sure that Pacha and I would get home safely in his car that was parked at the bus depot. He kept his word and took me right to my door.”

The acts of kindness can come in many different ways, from tying a pensioner’s shoelace to saving hedgehogs from the middle of the road.

David Currie’s nomination came by making a young boy’s day when he let him sit in the driver’s seat of the bus during a changeover in staff. Yvonne Gay said: “The driver let him sit in the driver’s seat and his words were ‘go on then show me what you can do!’ I can’t thank that driver enough, he’s made my boy’s day! There’s definitely still good people in this world.”

Wheelchair user Naomi Shaw praised Lothian buses employee Joe Burnett for his intervention after the Fringe Festival finale in August.

She said: “Joe made a point of asking which bus my husband and I needed and got it to line up in front of us. This seemingly small gesture made a huge difference as my anxiety was starting to rise.

“Being on the edge of the pavement is scary and the idea of missing the bus is terrifying. I love it when drivers or support staff use this logic. I’m obviously slower so boarding last delays for everyone.”

Raul Campo-Folgado has been regarded as “one of the nicest drivers I’ve ever had” by a customer on service 47 from Ladywood to Granton.

He is “so polite and friendly and especially patient with the elderly travellers” which made him stand out from the rest.

Joy Innes-Greig brought the “city to life” for an Edinburgh tourist who was a member of the city’s tour guide.

Sian Beech said: “When I visited Edinburgh early in the year I thought I knew about your wonderful history.

“But, after a tour with Joy as the guide she really did bring the city to life. She told us not only history, but more recent information.

“I found her very informative and also with a good sense of humour – a credit to the city.”