Investment in new fleet would see benefits for city

Published: Wednesday, 19th June 2019

Unitas Stoke-on-Trent Ltd is set to benefit from 250 new vehicles and plant machinery – which is good news for the 18,000 council house tenants across the city.

Stoke-on-Trent City Council wants to invest £4.75m in the new fleet, to provide a more reliable, environmentally-friendly and cost-effective service. These vehicles – which are needed to replace the existing fleet, soon due to expire – would then be leased to the housing repairs and maintenance company for a financial return.

If approved by cabinet members at a meeting on June 25, this is the latest move by the authority to meet its priority of being more commercially minded and driving efficiency in everything it does.

Councillor Carl Edwards, cabinet member for the environment, said: “The city council already provides a fleet management and maintenance service to Unitas, with the vehicles and plant machinery being leased by a third party supplier.

“The proposal is to purchase our own fleet, which would then be leased to Unitas under a five-year hire contract. The existing hire fleet needs replacing due to its age, and by making this investment we would be able to offer improved reliability, reduced downtime improved environmental and fuel efficiency and higher safety standards.

“Unitas has already indicated it is looking to have two fully-electric vehicles and with the reduced emissions from the new fleet we will be able to contribute to a better air quality for the city.

“Not only would this investment lead to a financial return for the council, it would also benefit the thousands of council tenants who rely on the services of Unitas to maintain and repair their homes.”

For all media enquiries please contact the press team at Stoke-on-Trent City Council on 01782 232265 (journalists only).