WITH a new £2.5million fleet of buses set to transport passengers between Bolton and Blackburn, its operator Transdev is now looking for a local passengers to provide a Lancashire voice for their announcements.

The 13 single-deckers are set to come on stream before Christmas on Transdev's Number One service via Astley Bridge.

They are currently being built by Scarborough-based Alexander Dennis as part of a wider £3.5m investment programme by the operator.

The route is operated by Transdev subsidiary the Blackburn Bus Company.

The new buses include up to date features for passengers including fast wifi, wireless charging and USB power points, and the very latest low-emission technology.

In addition they will include on onboard voice announcements to help customers get to where they're going, welcome them to the bus and let everybody know the next stop.

Now the bus company is running a competition to find a cracking local Lancashire voice for the in-journey messages.

Alex Hornby, Transdev's chief executive, said: “We’re excited to be investing over £2.5m in new buses for our customers in Blackburn, Darwen and Bolton later this year – with several new features for everybody to enjoy.

"The new fleet will be built in the north of England and feature the very latest low-emission technology, so will be amongst the cleanest, greenest vehicles on the roads.

"These new buses feature on board ‘next stop’ announcements to help our customers get to where they’re going, and we are looking for a cracking Lancashire local to star as ‘the voice’ of our new buses.”

All would-be onboard stars need to do to enter the competition is to record a short 30 second audition video, telling the firm why they'd like to be the voice of the '1'.

The company stress is is not looking for a 'robot' voice and wants entrants to be themselves.

It is looking for ordinary local travellers not profession voice artists.

Entrants for the competition should upload their entries to YouTube, Twitter, Facebook or Instagram with the hashtag #ICouldBeThe1 no later than 5pm on Friday September 27.

Mr Hornby added: “At Transdev, we place our customers at the heart of everything we do, and each of our new buses now on order will offer several new and never seen before features for them to enjoy.”

Colin Robertson, Alexander Dennis’ chief executive, added: “When an award-winning operator like Transdev chooses our single-deck buses, it’s a resounding endorsement. It has been a pleasure to develop their amazing specification with the Transdev team."