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Last Updated: Monday, 3 October 2005, 15:04 GMT 16:04 UK
London bomb tribute bus unveiled
Spirit of London bus
The British-designed bus is the first of a new series of double deckers
A new bus has been unveiled to replace the one destroyed in the 7 July bomb blast which killed 13 passengers.

Mayor Ken Livingstone said the bus was named Spirit of London in tribute to them and hoped George Psaradakis, the driver on 7 July, would take the wheel.

The British-designed 160,000 double decker will start running from Marble Arch to Hackney later this month.

Peter Sumner from Stagecoach said: "It closes a chapter on the Number 30 and enables us to...move forward."

Speaking at the unveiling, Mr Livingstone said he hoped Mr Psaradakis would drive the new bus.

'Work through adversity'

"We would be delighted if he wanted to drive this bus. It certainly is a nicer bus to drive," he said.

"Londoners will see this bus and remember the courage of the bus drive and Londoners generally that day. It also states that we work through adversity. When Londoners get on it, they will think of the future."

Tube driver Jeff Porter
Tube driver Jeff Porter ran along the track to the station to get help

The new bus, manufactured by Alexander Dennis, is the first of a new generation of British-designed and built double deckers.

The Spirit of London, operated by Stagecoach East London, is fitted with an air-cooling system, more seats and environmentally-friendly bodywork.

Tube driver Mr Porter has also won plaudits for his actions during the Edgware Road blast which killed six and injured more than 100.

Time magazine, which also honoured Sir Bob Geldof and Richard Curtis for organising Live 8, praised Mr Porter for his quick thinking and classic British reserve.

His train windscreen shattered, but nevertheless the 46-year-old jumped onto the track and ran 100 yards to the station to get help.

He then returned to place a circuit breaker on the track, calm his 1,000 passengers and lead them to safety.




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