BUS company bosses are offering passengers a free ride as part of a campaign aimed at getting more people to use public transport.

Arriva is offering a free day or family day saver ticket when customers buy a mobile phone ticket during Catch the Bus Week which runs until Sunday (May 5).

Catch the Bus Week is being launched by Greener Journeys, the sustainable transport group, and aims to increase awareness of the benefits of bus travel across the UK.

Arriva, which operates services across the North-East, got on board with the campaign by giving people the chance to try out the bus for free – showcasing the benefits offered by the bus.

The mayor of Darlington, Councillor Paul Baldwin, joined Arriva commercial director Nick Knox to help launch the campaign.

The pair donned green novelty hands to attract the attention of potential passengers.

Nigel Featham, managing director of Arriva North East, said: “Catch the Bus Week is a fantastic idea by Greener Journeys, and one which Arriva is proud to support.

“As the campaign aims to promote the bus as an option for certain trips, we thought the best way to get involved was to offer free travel on the bus so people can try it for themselves.

“Catch the Bus Week will hopefully encourage people who have forgotten about bus travel to review us as an option when travelling, and experience developments, such as our m-ticketing service, which allows people to use their mobile to purchase tickets.”

For more information, visit arrivabus.co.uk/catchthebus