Go North East Fleet Go North East's 726
January 2019 Go North East Photograph by aptyldsley
This vehicle has entered service at Deptford Depot, on "Sunderland Connect" services 700/701.
January 2019 Go North East
Prior to entering service, this vehicle has received "Sunderland Connect" branding.
January 2019 Go North East Photograph by Daniel Graham
In May 2018, Nexus offered a new tender opportunity to operators in the North East of England, to operate the daytime "Sunderland Connect" 700 and evening 701 services. The tender is designed to promote and continue the public transport links in Sunderland between Park Lane, Clanny House, City Campus, Park Lane, Aquatic Centre, St Peters Campus, West Sunniside and Park Lane, to offer a service to the general public and university students and to be branded as the ‘Sunderland Connect’ service. Since the contract's inception in 2012, Sunderland City Council provided the winning operator with three Hybrid Optare Solos to operate the services, but this year the contract changed so that the vehicles were instead owned by the operator, although the livery to be carried by the vehicles still remained the responsibility of the scheme partners to specify. Go North East were awarded this contract in July 2018, to commence from September 2018, winning the tender based on providing three brand new Euro 6 low-carbon Optare Solo SRs, with a 'Euro 5' bus being the intended spare vehicle. Dispensation has been allowed since September to continue using the Hybrid Optare Solos owned by Sunderland City Council, pending delivery of the new minibuses. Delivery of these vehicles has now commenced. Internally; they feature Esteban Civic V3 seating complete with leather and soft topper foam for added comfort; two-colour Tarabus 'Wood Effect' flooring; and blue accent lighting, which is fitted underneath seats and on the stairwell, to provide extra light on the gangway. Like all of Go North East's new vehicles; they feature Wi-Fi, 'Next Stop' audio-visual announcements and USB connections as standard, although this is the first time USB power sockets have been included on an Optare new-build.
March 2019 Go North East
This vehicle has returned to Go North East following internal refurbishment and repaint into a two-tone silver and blue base livery. It is currently undergoing preparation for service at Saltmeadows Road Depot prior to returning to service at Percy Main.
March 2007 Go North East
This vehicle has been repainted into a plain white base livery, providing spare coverage in the event of a branded vehicle being unavailable for service.
March 2016 Go North East
This vehicle has entered service at Crook Depot, on "The Castles Express" services X21 and X46.
March 2007 Go North East
Following the withdrawal of the 775 service (Sunderland - Consett) and the restructure of the routes along this corridor, this vehicle has received "Lime" branding, featuring the tagline "cross county connection".