Velvet bus company folds leaving passengers stranded in Eastleigh and Southampton

Daily Echo: Passengers left stranded as Hampshire bus firm shuts down Passengers left stranded as Hampshire bus firm shuts down

A HAMPSHIRE bus company has shut down, the Echo can reveal.

Velvet - which ran services in Southampton and the Eastleigh area - ceased trading today.

The Daily Echo understands the firm's drivers and administration staff were told the company was closing this afternoon.

The firm's website has shut down and replaced with a statement reading: “We regret to advise that Velvet has ceased trading as of Wednesday, July 16.

It follows months of financial troubles at the company whose head offices are bases in Eastleigh High Street.

Arrangements are being made to cover their routes.

 

Comments (23)

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9:22pm Wed 16 Jul 14

smiler52 says...

sad news hope the staff can find work with other local firms
sad news hope the staff can find work with other local firms smiler52
  • Score: 26

9:29pm Wed 16 Jul 14

Saint Botley says...

Really friendly drivers, shame.
Really friendly drivers, shame. Saint Botley
  • Score: 17

9:44pm Wed 16 Jul 14

mr.southampton says...

Is that the old blue line?
Is that the old blue line? mr.southampton
  • Score: -18

9:46pm Wed 16 Jul 14

thesouth says...

Passengers 'stranded ' ...hardly
Passengers 'stranded ' ...hardly thesouth
  • Score: 0

9:52pm Wed 16 Jul 14

rjfmusic says...

Through Facebook Bluestar have stated that they will be running some of the Velvet routes and offered jobs to drivers - sometimes Facebook does have good uses!
Through Facebook Bluestar have stated that they will be running some of the Velvet routes and offered jobs to drivers - sometimes Facebook does have good uses! rjfmusic
  • Score: 24

10:17pm Wed 16 Jul 14

sotonbusdriver says...

Xelabus will be stepping in and doing a lot of cover, they wanted the routes, but weren't going to buy them off VELVET, when they were going bankrupt and could get them for FREE basically....
Many of the drivers were my colleagues from another UK big bus company, and it's such a shame to see them without a job, after many have worked for weeks or even months without pay, to try and keep Velvet afloat...
The drivers and customer service staff are well out of pocket...
Good luck for the future lads, hope you get employment fast, I know like most of us you have urgent and important utility and shopping bills that need paying....
Xelabus will be stepping in and doing a lot of cover, they wanted the routes, but weren't going to buy them off VELVET, when they were going bankrupt and could get them for FREE basically.... Many of the drivers were my colleagues from another UK big bus company, and it's such a shame to see them without a job, after many have worked for weeks or even months without pay, to try and keep Velvet afloat... The drivers and customer service staff are well out of pocket... Good luck for the future lads, hope you get employment fast, I know like most of us you have urgent and important utility and shopping bills that need paying.... sotonbusdriver
  • Score: 30

10:46pm Wed 16 Jul 14

timewaster1 says...

Sad news. I hope the drivers manage to get work soon. It's a shame to see them fold as the driver's were such a friendly bunch. It was a shock to hear this as I saw one of the buses go past my house at 3pm. Thankfully, Blue Star will be taking over my route from tomorrow. When I first heard this I thought my route would fold as it is council subsidised and it was axed about a year ago and then reinstated 6 months later after petitions etc.
Sad news. I hope the drivers manage to get work soon. It's a shame to see them fold as the driver's were such a friendly bunch. It was a shock to hear this as I saw one of the buses go past my house at 3pm. Thankfully, Blue Star will be taking over my route from tomorrow. When I first heard this I thought my route would fold as it is council subsidised and it was axed about a year ago and then reinstated 6 months later after petitions etc. timewaster1
  • Score: 2

11:07pm Wed 16 Jul 14

manintheknow2013 says...

Just remember folks, there is a man at the heart of this article who created this company from nothing but an idea, a vision, bucket loads of grit, determination and long hours of hard work.

His passengers came first and loyal staff were lavished with good pay and conditions. Velvet was not only a business but a way of life.

There is no question that without the injection of passion that Velvet injected in the transport system of Eastleigh & surrounding area, the likes of Xelabus or Bluestar would of had no commercial desire to compete for a slice of the 'cake' created by the staff of Velvet.

It's fashionable to knock a man when he's down but those who know Phil know that his passengers were his ultimate priority.

To this end, I am sure we can agree that heckling is wholly inappropriate.
Just remember folks, there is a man at the heart of this article who created this company from nothing but an idea, a vision, bucket loads of grit, determination and long hours of hard work. His passengers came first and loyal staff were lavished with good pay and conditions. Velvet was not only a business but a way of life. There is no question that without the injection of passion that Velvet injected in the transport system of Eastleigh & surrounding area, the likes of Xelabus or Bluestar would of had no commercial desire to compete for a slice of the 'cake' created by the staff of Velvet. It's fashionable to knock a man when he's down but those who know Phil know that his passengers were his ultimate priority. To this end, I am sure we can agree that heckling is wholly inappropriate. manintheknow2013
  • Score: 18

11:56pm Wed 16 Jul 14

Angry Single Mum says...

He knew he was going under months ago, he continued to take money out of my ex husbands wages but never paid it in to the CSA, so in keeping the £1,200 he knowingly stole off two young children who needed and were entitled to that money. I hope he can sleep at night knowing my children have to now go without things they need.
He knew he was going under months ago, he continued to take money out of my ex husbands wages but never paid it in to the CSA, so in keeping the £1,200 he knowingly stole off two young children who needed and were entitled to that money. I hope he can sleep at night knowing my children have to now go without things they need. Angry Single Mum
  • Score: -5

12:06am Thu 17 Jul 14

Kipper1961 says...

As a bus driver I am proud to have been part of velvet I was only there for the past two years but the passion hard work and sweat put into the company by phill was 2nd to none with him quite often working until the early hours of the morning such a good guy to work for as were all the staff he did everything in his power to keep the company afloat and always put the passenger first that's what made velvet special
And separated us from other company's
RIP. Velvet
As a bus driver I am proud to have been part of velvet I was only there for the past two years but the passion hard work and sweat put into the company by phill was 2nd to none with him quite often working until the early hours of the morning such a good guy to work for as were all the staff he did everything in his power to keep the company afloat and always put the passenger first that's what made velvet special And separated us from other company's RIP. Velvet Kipper1961
  • Score: 12

12:14am Thu 17 Jul 14

TwinkleNose says...

With respect, all of you people claiming Phill was a good guy... Phill was taking CSA money from an employees wages and wasn't paying it. 4 months ago was the last time he made the payment required by law. So, not only do the children lose out on money that is owed to them by their absent, couldn't care less sperm donor, by the ACCLSD was having money taken from his wages but not being paid to the correct authority therefore, "Good Guy" Phill was stealing from him too.
It's called karma.
With respect, all of you people claiming Phill was a good guy... Phill was taking CSA money from an employees wages and wasn't paying it. 4 months ago was the last time he made the payment required by law. So, not only do the children lose out on money that is owed to them by their absent, couldn't care less sperm donor, by the ACCLSD was having money taken from his wages but not being paid to the correct authority therefore, "Good Guy" Phill was stealing from him too. It's called karma. TwinkleNose
  • Score: -1

12:22am Thu 17 Jul 14

BeyondImagination says...

TwinkleNose wrote:
With respect, all of you people claiming Phill was a good guy... Phill was taking CSA money from an employees wages and wasn't paying it. 4 months ago was the last time he made the payment required by law. So, not only do the children lose out on money that is owed to them by their absent, couldn't care less sperm donor, by the ACCLSD was having money taken from his wages but not being paid to the correct authority therefore, "Good Guy" Phill was stealing from him too.
It's called karma.
HMRC will be paid first out of any assets so it is likely the CSA money will be handed over in due course.
[quote][p][bold]TwinkleNose[/bold] wrote: With respect, all of you people claiming Phill was a good guy... Phill was taking CSA money from an employees wages and wasn't paying it. 4 months ago was the last time he made the payment required by law. So, not only do the children lose out on money that is owed to them by their absent, couldn't care less sperm donor, by the ACCLSD was having money taken from his wages but not being paid to the correct authority therefore, "Good Guy" Phill was stealing from him too. It's called karma.[/p][/quote]HMRC will be paid first out of any assets so it is likely the CSA money will be handed over in due course. BeyondImagination
  • Score: 3

12:36am Thu 17 Jul 14

Angry Single Mum says...

BeyondImagination wrote:
TwinkleNose wrote:
With respect, all of you people claiming Phill was a good guy... Phill was taking CSA money from an employees wages and wasn't paying it. 4 months ago was the last time he made the payment required by law. So, not only do the children lose out on money that is owed to them by their absent, couldn't care less sperm donor, by the ACCLSD was having money taken from his wages but not being paid to the correct authority therefore, "Good Guy" Phill was stealing from him too.
It's called karma.
HMRC will be paid first out of any assets so it is likely the CSA money will be handed over in due course.
It should have been paid to CSA straight away, after all it WASN'T his money to keep was it?
He's nothing more than a thief!
[quote][p][bold]BeyondImagination[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]TwinkleNose[/bold] wrote: With respect, all of you people claiming Phill was a good guy... Phill was taking CSA money from an employees wages and wasn't paying it. 4 months ago was the last time he made the payment required by law. So, not only do the children lose out on money that is owed to them by their absent, couldn't care less sperm donor, by the ACCLSD was having money taken from his wages but not being paid to the correct authority therefore, "Good Guy" Phill was stealing from him too. It's called karma.[/p][/quote]HMRC will be paid first out of any assets so it is likely the CSA money will be handed over in due course.[/p][/quote]It should have been paid to CSA straight away, after all it WASN'T his money to keep was it? He's nothing more than a thief! Angry Single Mum
  • Score: -3

12:41am Thu 17 Jul 14

TwinkleNose says...

BeyondImagination wrote:
TwinkleNose wrote:
With respect, all of you people claiming Phill was a good guy... Phill was taking CSA money from an employees wages and wasn't paying it. 4 months ago was the last time he made the payment required by law. So, not only do the children lose out on money that is owed to them by their absent, couldn't care less sperm donor, by the ACCLSD was having money taken from his wages but not being paid to the correct authority therefore, "Good Guy" Phill was stealing from him too.
It's called karma.
HMRC will be paid first out of any assets so it is likely the CSA money will be handed over in due course.
I certainly hope so. Over £1k unaccounted for. 2 kids going without because of the wonderful Phill.
[quote][p][bold]BeyondImagination[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]TwinkleNose[/bold] wrote: With respect, all of you people claiming Phill was a good guy... Phill was taking CSA money from an employees wages and wasn't paying it. 4 months ago was the last time he made the payment required by law. So, not only do the children lose out on money that is owed to them by their absent, couldn't care less sperm donor, by the ACCLSD was having money taken from his wages but not being paid to the correct authority therefore, "Good Guy" Phill was stealing from him too. It's called karma.[/p][/quote]HMRC will be paid first out of any assets so it is likely the CSA money will be handed over in due course.[/p][/quote]I certainly hope so. Over £1k unaccounted for. 2 kids going without because of the wonderful Phill. TwinkleNose
  • Score: 1

1:19am Thu 17 Jul 14

Dave Of The South says...

manintheknow2013 wrote:
Just remember folks, there is a man at the heart of this article who created this company from nothing but an idea, a vision, bucket loads of grit, determination and long hours of hard work.

His passengers came first and loyal staff were lavished with good pay and conditions. Velvet was not only a business but a way of life.

There is no question that without the injection of passion that Velvet injected in the transport system of Eastleigh & surrounding area, the likes of Xelabus or Bluestar would of had no commercial desire to compete for a slice of the 'cake' created by the staff of Velvet.

It's fashionable to knock a man when he's down but those who know Phil know that his passengers were his ultimate priority.

To this end, I am sure we can agree that heckling is wholly inappropriate.
Yes but Phil Stockley went up north to tinker with TM Travel on a part-time basis, so took his finger & eye off the ball at Velvet & things went pear shaped. If passengers were his top priority he would have stayed loyal to the Purple brand. Basically he got fed up with it & said sod it!
[quote][p][bold]manintheknow2013[/bold] wrote: Just remember folks, there is a man at the heart of this article who created this company from nothing but an idea, a vision, bucket loads of grit, determination and long hours of hard work. His passengers came first and loyal staff were lavished with good pay and conditions. Velvet was not only a business but a way of life. There is no question that without the injection of passion that Velvet injected in the transport system of Eastleigh & surrounding area, the likes of Xelabus or Bluestar would of had no commercial desire to compete for a slice of the 'cake' created by the staff of Velvet. It's fashionable to knock a man when he's down but those who know Phil know that his passengers were his ultimate priority. To this end, I am sure we can agree that heckling is wholly inappropriate.[/p][/quote]Yes but Phil Stockley went up north to tinker with TM Travel on a part-time basis, so took his finger & eye off the ball at Velvet & things went pear shaped. If passengers were his top priority he would have stayed loyal to the Purple brand. Basically he got fed up with it & said sod it! Dave Of The South
  • Score: 1

1:21am Thu 17 Jul 14

Dave Of The South says...

sotonbusdriver wrote:
Xelabus will be stepping in and doing a lot of cover, they wanted the routes, but weren't going to buy them off VELVET, when they were going bankrupt and could get them for FREE basically....
Many of the drivers were my colleagues from another UK big bus company, and it's such a shame to see them without a job, after many have worked for weeks or even months without pay, to try and keep Velvet afloat...
The drivers and customer service staff are well out of pocket...
Good luck for the future lads, hope you get employment fast, I know like most of us you have urgent and important utility and shopping bills that need paying....
The routes Xela got off Velvet's demise are only HCC/EBC contracts on a short term. No doubt they will be re tendered again soon. Wheelers have taken over the "A". Whilst Xela did a "deal" for the Eastleigh bit of the "A" as their X4
[quote][p][bold]sotonbusdriver[/bold] wrote: Xelabus will be stepping in and doing a lot of cover, they wanted the routes, but weren't going to buy them off VELVET, when they were going bankrupt and could get them for FREE basically.... Many of the drivers were my colleagues from another UK big bus company, and it's such a shame to see them without a job, after many have worked for weeks or even months without pay, to try and keep Velvet afloat... The drivers and customer service staff are well out of pocket... Good luck for the future lads, hope you get employment fast, I know like most of us you have urgent and important utility and shopping bills that need paying....[/p][/quote]The routes Xela got off Velvet's demise are only HCC/EBC contracts on a short term. No doubt they will be re tendered again soon. Wheelers have taken over the "A". Whilst Xela did a "deal" for the Eastleigh bit of the "A" as their X4 Dave Of The South
  • Score: 0

3:21am Thu 17 Jul 14

pauladams224 says...

manintheknow2013 wrote:
Just remember folks, there is a man at the heart of this article who created this company from nothing but an idea, a vision, bucket loads of grit, determination and long hours of hard work.

His passengers came first and loyal staff were lavished with good pay and conditions. Velvet was not only a business but a way of life.

There is no question that without the injection of passion that Velvet injected in the transport system of Eastleigh & surrounding area, the likes of Xelabus or Bluestar would of had no commercial desire to compete for a slice of the 'cake' created by the staff of Velvet.

It's fashionable to knock a man when he's down but those who know Phil know that his passengers were his ultimate priority.

To this end, I am sure we can agree that heckling is wholly inappropriate.
hypocrisy, the likes of Xelabus or Bluestar would of had no commercial desire to compete for a slice of the 'cake' created by the staff of Velvet.
To this end, I am sure we can agree that heckling is wholly inappropriate.
[quote][p][bold]manintheknow2013[/bold] wrote: Just remember folks, there is a man at the heart of this article who created this company from nothing but an idea, a vision, bucket loads of grit, determination and long hours of hard work. His passengers came first and loyal staff were lavished with good pay and conditions. Velvet was not only a business but a way of life. There is no question that without the injection of passion that Velvet injected in the transport system of Eastleigh & surrounding area, the likes of Xelabus or Bluestar would of had no commercial desire to compete for a slice of the 'cake' created by the staff of Velvet. It's fashionable to knock a man when he's down but those who know Phil know that his passengers were his ultimate priority. To this end, I am sure we can agree that heckling is wholly inappropriate.[/p][/quote]hypocrisy, the likes of Xelabus or Bluestar would of had no commercial desire to compete for a slice of the 'cake' created by the staff of Velvet. To this end, I am sure we can agree that heckling is wholly inappropriate. pauladams224
  • Score: 0

6:35am Thu 17 Jul 14

rudolph_hucker says...

Busses and public transport, urgggh. How depressing.
Glad there are less on the road.
And all this bickering over ex husbands, ex bosses and child support payments paints a miserable picture of people trying to eke out a living instead of trying better themselves.
Busses and public transport, urgggh. How depressing. Glad there are less on the road. And all this bickering over ex husbands, ex bosses and child support payments paints a miserable picture of people trying to eke out a living instead of trying better themselves. rudolph_hucker
  • Score: -8

7:14am Thu 17 Jul 14

maxluke25 says...

over the yrs we,ve seen bus companys come and go,home james ,and summerfields etc. and now velvet but i think most people will agree with me that out of all the bus companys out there velvet did have the most friendly and happiest drivers in the local bus industry and enjoying thier jobs and dealing with the public, take a look at most bus drivers ie xela first and bluestar when u board either one of the buses mention thier drivers always seem to be misrable and got a job to crack a smile, velvet will be missed R.I.P
over the yrs we,ve seen bus companys come and go,home james ,and summerfields etc. and now velvet but i think most people will agree with me that out of all the bus companys out there velvet did have the most friendly and happiest drivers in the local bus industry and enjoying thier jobs and dealing with the public, take a look at most bus drivers ie xela first and bluestar when u board either one of the buses mention thier drivers always seem to be misrable and got a job to crack a smile, velvet will be missed R.I.P maxluke25
  • Score: 4

8:40am Thu 17 Jul 14

Hastagger says...

Angry Single Mum wrote:
He knew he was going under months ago, he continued to take money out of my ex husbands wages but never paid it in to the CSA, so in keeping the £1,200 he knowingly stole off two young children who needed and were entitled to that money. I hope he can sleep at night knowing my children have to now go without things they need.
If this is true he should be prosecuted.

#thief
#scum
#prayforangrysinglem
um
[quote][p][bold]Angry Single Mum[/bold] wrote: He knew he was going under months ago, he continued to take money out of my ex husbands wages but never paid it in to the CSA, so in keeping the £1,200 he knowingly stole off two young children who needed and were entitled to that money. I hope he can sleep at night knowing my children have to now go without things they need.[/p][/quote]If this is true he should be prosecuted. #thief #scum #prayforangrysinglem um Hastagger
  • Score: -1

11:38am Thu 17 Jul 14

Angry Single Mum says...

Hastagger wrote:
Angry Single Mum wrote:
He knew he was going under months ago, he continued to take money out of my ex husbands wages but never paid it in to the CSA, so in keeping the £1,200 he knowingly stole off two young children who needed and were entitled to that money. I hope he can sleep at night knowing my children have to now go without things they need.
If this is true he should be prosecuted.

#thief
#scum
#prayforangrysinglem

um
Yes it's true and i will be seeking legal action against him
[quote][p][bold]Hastagger[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Angry Single Mum[/bold] wrote: He knew he was going under months ago, he continued to take money out of my ex husbands wages but never paid it in to the CSA, so in keeping the £1,200 he knowingly stole off two young children who needed and were entitled to that money. I hope he can sleep at night knowing my children have to now go without things they need.[/p][/quote]If this is true he should be prosecuted. #thief #scum #prayforangrysinglem um[/p][/quote]Yes it's true and i will be seeking legal action against him Angry Single Mum
  • Score: 0

5:16pm Thu 17 Jul 14

Norahbatty says...

passenger s have hardly been left stranded have they!!!! The guys driving Xelabuses seriously need to learn the highway code, just because you are driving a bus it does not mean that you can just pull out at a junction or on a roundabout, something I have witnessed more than once over the last few days and funny enough always the same driver
passenger s have hardly been left stranded have they!!!! The guys driving Xelabuses seriously need to learn the highway code, just because you are driving a bus it does not mean that you can just pull out at a junction or on a roundabout, something I have witnessed more than once over the last few days and funny enough always the same driver Norahbatty
  • Score: 0

9:45pm Thu 17 Jul 14

Twynham_Ben says...

How does this idiot of a reporter keep his job. He consistently overhypes stories. Its quite scary he is a Senior Reporter; I'd hate to meet one of the Echo's junior reporters if he is anything to go by!!
How does this idiot of a reporter keep his job. He consistently overhypes stories. Its quite scary he is a Senior Reporter; I'd hate to meet one of the Echo's junior reporters if he is anything to go by!! Twynham_Ben
  • Score: 0

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