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Free open top bus tours - Banksy Mural

Free open top bus tours, incorporating the renowned Banksy mural at Reading Gaol, are announced today by Reading Buses.

The tours are designed to help celebrate the town’s ongoing reopening this half term.

The exciting news has been revealed by Reading Buses who will operate the ‘Banksy and Two Bridges’ open top tour on Saturdays May 29 and June 5.

The circular tour will run every 30 minutes between 10.00am and 5.30pm starting on Friar Street at the bus stop outside the IBIS and Novotel Hotels, before taking in the following sights a few minutes later:

  • Blagrave Street - for the Station and Town Hall

  • Jackson’s Corner - for the Oracle

  • Huntley & Palmers - by Reading Gaol for Banksy

  • Hills Meadow - for Reading Bridge

  • Central Caversham

  • Caversham Bridge

Passengers may get on and off at any of these stops to enjoy the various sites.

The best news is that the service will be totally free to use. Instead, Reading Buses will be requesting donations for their charity of the year – mental health sports charity, Sport in Mind.

Robert Williams, Chief Executive Officer of Reading Buses, said today: “We wanted to find a way to help encourage visitors back to Reading’s excellent town centre, and provide a new reason to visit.

“Having been forced to cancel our annual family open day this year due to Covid-19, we wanted to organise a creative opportunity to raise money for our charity of the year Sport in Mind.

“If people can’t make the tours they can still support the charity by texting SIM2 to 70085 to donate £2 to Sport in Mind.”

Neil Harris, CEO at Sport in Mind, said: “The open top bus tour will provide a unique way to view the Banksy mural and perhaps inspire people to come outside and explore the local area.

“Any physical activity can really help improve the lives of people experiencing mental health problems.” Said Alexa Volker, Head of Operations, Reading Central and Abbey Quarter Business Improvement Districts: “What a great initiative by Reading Buses! I am sure it will encourage people back to Reading town centre and help with the growing return to a normality we all look forward to.”

In the event of poor weather, the company says its dedicated Sport in Mind bus will provide the service instead.

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