Press Centre

Double Decker Driving School

  • Episode: 

    3 of 6

  • Transmission (TX): 

    Thu 09 Apr 2015
  • TX Confirmed: 

    Yes
  • Time: 

    8.30pm - 9.00pm
  • Week: 

    Week 15 2015 : Sat 04 Apr - Fri 10 Apr
  • Channel: 

    ITV
The information contained herein is strictly embargoed from all press, online and social media use, non-commercial publication, or syndication until Tuesday 31 March 2015.
 
“When you’re out there you think you’re the world’s best driver. Until you come into an environment like this. And that’s when you come down with a bang.” - Jim Johnston, bus training officer
 
This new six-part documentary series for ITV focuses on the ultra-competitive world of trainee London bus drivers.
 
With numerous applicants for every place on the intensive six-week course, the bus drivers’ school promises to be a gateway to a steady salary and a virtual job for life. First, however, the prospective drivers must learn how to safely negotiate a ten-ton bus through London’s overcrowded streets.
 
The trainees are filmed from the first moment they sit behind the wheel of a bus through a set of increasingly complex manoeuvres designed to test their abilities to the limit.
 
Those who make it through the early stages then face the toughest assessment of all – their bus driving test, a 90-minute examination. This will determine if the trainees have what it takes to achieve their dreams, and make it as a bus driver.
 
If they pass this ultimate test, then every crash, every stall, and every heart-in-mouth emergency stop over the six weeks has been worth it.
 
Episode 3
 
This time, Manuel Daniel is three weeks into the course and struggling. He’s failed a series of crucial safety exams and his driving isn’t up to the high standard expected. 
 
For Manuel becoming a bus driver will mean the world; he will finally be able to afford to move out of his parents’ house and rent a place of his own, with a room for his bus-loving son. He says: “I’m happy with a second chance, I’m not ashamed. I’m looking forward to doing the test and passing. More pressure now.”
 
Bart Kosciolek’s on a mission to become London’s friendliest bus driver. Originally from Poland, Bart came to the UK eight years ago. He’s tried his hand at being a chef, but is now set on gaining his bus driving qualification. 
 
With his infectious giggle, he wants to spread a little happiness to the capital’s seven million daily bus passengers. He says: “Come on, let’s have some fun. A little smile, a little joke is going to help people make their mood for the day.”
 
But instructor Anna Groom is only prepared to go along with Bart’s antics so far. She says: “He’s a very good driver, he just has to remember while he’s busy smiling and laughing he has to concentrate on driving as well.”
 
Newly-married Rodney Willis has given up a job as a used car salesman to drive a double decker. He believes becoming a bus driver will give him the security he craves. 
 
He says: “I’m quietly nervous, but quietly confident. I’ve had my heart set on driving a bus. That’s my plan A, plan B and plan C really.”
 
But despite having driven hundreds of cars, nothing can prepare Rodney for taking control of a 10 tonne double decker - particularly when he finds himself surrounded with hundreds of marching protesters in the middle of Trafalgar Square.