Hull's legendary Beats Bus back on the road following successful campaign to fund new vehicle

The Beats Bus is back on the road after the previous bus was deemed damaged beyond repair
The Beats Bus is back on the road after the previous bus was deemed damaged beyond repair -Credit:Beats Bus Records

A campaign to get the popular Beats Bus in Hull back in the road has proven to be successful so youngsters can once again express their creative side with the power of music.

Since 2017, the Beats Bus has been regularly touring Hull estates and engaging with local schools, raising thousands of children's aspirations from disadvantaged backgrounds. In March, however, the previous bus was deemed damaged beyond repair, prompting organisers to seek funding from the public. It had extensive rust damage to its axles, which could've costed upwards of £7,000 to fully repair.

Following a successful Crowdfunder campaign campaign, locals will once again get their music fix and chance to express their creativity to places that may not have access to the arts. Hull City Council also contributed £7,500 towards the new bus.

Read more:

It was unveiled at an open day on Saturday (May 11), when people got first sight of the new vehicle. Dave, who works for the Beats Bus team, told Hull Live of everybody's excitement at the bus at Albemarle Music Centre.

He said: "We did a crowd-funder, the Council came in and people from the Crime Commissioners' Department helped fund it as well. It was just a good opportunity to do some workshops and showcase the bus."

The new bus is a converted training fire engine. Compared to the old vehicle, it has more space, seating already installed from its former firefighting life and a lift for better accessibility and a screening area. "We do a lot of safety campaigns", Dave said. "It is [the screen] a good thing to have, especially when we are launching our new film soon."

The first Beats Bus found national fame in a documentary-styled film following its creator Steve Arnott. Directed by local filmmaker Sean McAllister, A Northern Soul shows how the bus provides a beacon of hope through the escapism of hip-hop.

The new Beats Bus was unveiled on Saturday, May 11
The new Beats Bus was unveiled on Saturday, May 11 -Credit:Beats Bus Records

"We've definitely stepped up", Dave said. "The other [bus] didn't have much storage space, and that took a lot of the areas we were going to use, and this one is a blank canvas really. At the back, we already have a built-in disabled access lift, and we can use that not just for the disabled people, but for bringing equipment on and off the bus.

"We're really happy with it. Last week we were just concentrating on the branding, which is very important. We're keeping with the same branding as Beats Bus 1, with the wild, graffiti style of lettering which we've done. It's just about creating that nice feel to it."

While the new bus was being prepared, the team were still hosting workshops although it did mean that people did have to travel to the city centre to Albemarle Music Centre.

Some of the equipment from the old Beats Bus has been reused in the new vehicle, but the team saw the change as the perfect opportunity to have some hardware upgrades. "We've bought a new sound system, some lighting for it, we've got an MPC, keyboards and some DJ equipment", said Dave. "We're just looking at upgrading some more equipment, maybe some more computers for radio and video production. We're happy with everything we've acquired."

The new Beats Bus has already hit the road and will be seen at The Big Malarky Festival, at East Park, in June, as well as some safety campaigns at the end of June, Dave says. You can keep up to date with the new look Beats Bus on their social media here.