89After a long wait, and more than one complication, Thurrock’s three Bar’N’Bus teams have finally got their new vehicle.

The new Bar’N’Bus bus rolled into action on Tuesday 8 February at Grays Beach.

The new bus has a different lay-out to the old one, which was decommissioned after five year’s service across the borough, being located at Blackshots Leisure Centre, Corringham Town Centre, Chafford Hundred Armada Centre, West Thurrock Cowdrey Hall and Grays Beach.

87The new bus has all the features of the old, but necessarily in the same order! Downstairs has a kitchen, but also a games consul. Upstairs has another games consul and also a big screen. There is also a prayer room at the front of the top deck.

However, it’s yet to be decked out in its distinctive eye-catching and youth-attracting graffiti-style painting.

Team Leader Gary Jones was more than please with the bus’s maiden voyage – although it nearly didn’t get out of the compound where it’s kept.

“We had trouble starting  the bus at the start and end of the evening,” he said, “but prayer and divine inspiration got us to the cause of the problem.”

PICT1943Gary also told Transformation Thurrock, “We thought we would call the bus Barney (Barney-Bus), a play on the name Barnabas, who was the ‘son of encouragement’ (Acts 4:36) – which is what we are trying to do, just encourage the kids.”

Afterwards Gary said that the evening went really well. “This kids liked the new bus layout. The big plasma screen an Wii where some big hits.”

Also present were Stuart Christian, Operations Manager of the Bar’N’Bus ‘fleet’, and Bar’N’Bus Trustee David Christian.

Bar’n’Bus Fundraising Curry Night on 28 February – see accompanying article for more information!

Pictures (top to bottom):

  • The bus pulls in at the Grays Beach car park
  • Young people at the bus
  • Driver Pete Rooke approves of the ‘new’ model!
  • The team of volunteers get prepped up