Inner Hero banner Image

ZEBRA Funding Phase 2 – lessons learnt and considerations for bidders

The Department for Transport has launched another funding competition under its ZEBRA zero emission bus programme.

You are invited to join Freeths and WSP at this free webinar to learn more about ZEBRA and lessons learnt from the first phase of ZEBRA funding.

This webinar is ideal if you work for a local authority, bus service operator or are a supplier to the sector. We will provide insight for anyone in a management, finance, operations, technical, manufacturing or legal role. Attendees are welcome to provide questions to the speaking panel prior to the webinar via the Zoom registration form and also during the webinar.

Date: Tuesday 31 October
Time: 11:30am – 1:00pm
Venue: Via Zoom

Authorities and bus operators are being encouraged to collaborate to take advantage of the £129m of additional funding to be made available in this round.

With bids due in by 15th December 2023, time is short and this event is designed to help bidding authorities and their operators gain valuable knowledge from experts in the procurement and funding of zero emissions public service vehicles both under ZEBRA and using other funding routes.

In this webinar, an expert panel of speakers will cover:

  1. Local authorities as promoters of ZEBRA projects – what should their priorities be at this time?
  2. The Round 2 Evaluation Criteria – building a compelling business case.
  3. Battery and hydrogen vehicles – where are we with these technologies and what you need to be aware of.
  4. Financing options for authorities and operators.
  5. A panel discussion session covering: maximising impact in rural areas; infrastructure only projects; and how the increasing move towards franchising could impact upon the success of the ZEBRA initiative.

Chair and speakers:

Michael Bray: Webinar Chair, Partner and Head of the Freeths transport group
Michael Bray leads the Freeths national Transport Sector team, the national Real Estate Clean Energy Waste and Sustainability team, and the Real Estate EVCI team, and is a core member of the Freeths’ hydrogen working group.

He is a Real Estate partner and Head of Real Estate Bristol. He advises on a broad range of transport modes with particular expertise in bus and rail, advising transport operators, owner groups, investors and local government on transport projects.


Mike Holmes: Director, WSP
Mike Holmes is a Director in the WSP business with a focus on the development and delivery of Mass Transit      and Public Transport schemes. Mike has over 30 years’ experience in transport regulation and governance alongside policy and planning, appraisal, scheme development, operations and management, having previously worked for bus operators and local transport authorities before joining WSP 13 years ago. Mike is responsible for co-ordinating all aspects of the WSP Passenger Transport offer to clients, and the internal co-ordination of muti-disciplinary teams.


Frank Suttie: Director and Freeths lead for local transport
Frank Suttie is a Director in the Commercial Team at Freeths and leads the firms local transport practice.

He has advised upon completion of two ZEBRA projects to date and has a wider role advising authorities and operators on bus sector matters including enhanced partnerships, technology projects and bus franchising.


Liam O’Flynn: Managing Associate Freeths, bus lead for the clean energy team and Head of Freeths’ hydrogen sub-group
Liam is a clean energy lawyer, focussing on renewables, clean tech, and sustainability solutions, including wind, solar, battery storage, and zero-emission vehicles. He specialises in clean energy projects, focussing on commercial, regulatory, and transactional work.

Liam also leads Freeths’ hydrogen sector sub-group, looking at how the hydrogen economy is forecast to grow on the route to net zero. As part of this role, Liam looks at the part hydrogen could play outside his core energy sector, in particular looking at the opportunities for hydrogen in the transport, infrastructure, and manufacturing industries to help decarbonise.

Antonia de Winter: Technical Director, WSP: future mobility- funding, delivery and advisory
Antonia has 28 years of experience from working across both the private and public sector. Her work focusses in the main on the public transport and net zero arenas, through assessing and developing strategies and ambitions and interpreting them to allow business, and investment, decisions to be made.

A particular focus is bus decarbonisation – whether at a strategy, business case or bid support level. Antonia’s work covers for example, analysis of available options for delivery and funding, the benefits of hydrogen and electricity as power sources to allow an informed assessment of how to accelerate the transition to net zero.


Ian Baker: Director, WSP

Ian is a Technical Director at WSP, specialising in transport funding acquisition for local authorities, primarily through the development of business cases.

Ian was WSPs technical lead for the successful Norfolk County Council ZEBRA1 project and the Business Case and Economics team he runs developed the Green Bus Tool for the Department for Transport, which is to be used for all ZEBRA Value for Money Assessments.