Sinatra Fan Retires After 42 Years in Bus Industry

John Kevill hangs up clipboard after 42 years in the bus industry

John Kevill.
Yes, he did it his way: Driving Examiner John Kevill, retiring from Stagecoach Manchester on the 31 March. Image courtesy of Tangerine PR Ltd, 2017.

After 42 years of working for Greater Manchester Transport and its successors, John Kevill is hanging up his clipboard for good. For drivers who began their career on the Hyde Road skid pan or the Bennett Street training centre, Mr. Kevill is a familiar face.

He started out with Greater Manchester Transport in 1975 as a bus conductor, before taking the wheel in 1976. Back then, the bus driver’s wage for Greater Manchester Transport was £44 per week and overtime.

In 1978, he became a Driving Instructor, teaching newcomers how to drive Leyland Atlanteans and Daimler Fleetlines. Under his tutelage, GMT introduced an attractive all white livery for its training buses with a yellow strip between top and lower deck windows. Before SatNavs, route learning meant an A-Z Street Atlas and direction boards on lamp posts (such as this fellow seen below).

17 and 18 Riverside, Dukinfield

Deregulation and Promotion

John was a Driving Instructor well into the start of bus deregulation. Whilst at GM Buses, he was promoted to the role of Driving Examiner. He has held this position till the end of this month – a stint which has covered the split of GM Buses and GMS Buses’ sale to Stagecoach Holdings in March 1996. He is the proud owner of Advanced Driver Status for cars, plus LGV and PCV licences, and a keen road safety practitioner.

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Much More Than This, He Did It His Way…

Speaking about his retirement, John said: “I’ve been fortunate enough to spend over four decades in an industry which rapidly became part of my life and has helped to support my family for all these years. I also believe that a strong work/life balance is essential for success.”

“Now that I’m retiring, I look forward to spending more time with my family and intend to spend more time focusing on two things that I’m passionate about – photography and music; especially my Frank Sinatra tribute. One thing is for certain, whatever I did then and whatever I do now, I’ll be doing it my way”

Stagecoach Manchester managing director, Elisabeth Tasker said: “John has demonstrated a tremendous amount of dedication, loyalty and commitment to not just Stagecoach Manchester but the bus industry as a whole throughout the last 42 years and has helped us to establish a reputation as one of the country’s leading bus operators. From everyone at Stagecoach Manchester, we wish John a very happy retirement.”

We at East of the M60 wish him a very happy retirement too and hope to see him perform his tribute to Frank Sinatra.

An EM60 Presentation, 24 March 2017.

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