Buses travel back in time on birthday

Sheffield 1913 bus
Sheffield 1913 bus
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THEIR freshly-painted livery glistening in the mid-morning sun, these buses looked every inch the pride of Sheffield as they rolled into the city centre.

Shoppers stopped in their tracks at the sight of the double deckers sporting retro colours arriving at the Town Hall to pick up a host of specially-invited passengers for a birthday tour.

The event, which saw two buses painted in commemorative liveries from 1913 and 1960, was organised to mark the 100th anniversary of the city’s first ever motorbus service.

Once the wheels were in motion, bus company staff, family, friends and enthusiasts were given the chance to step into the shoes of passengers who used the mode of public transport to travel to Lodge Moor a century ago.

The occasion was a family affair for Giles Fearnley, managing director of First UK bus, whose grandad Arthur played an integral role in setting up the city’s network as general manager for The Sheffield Corporation Tramways. His initials took pride of place on the side of the lower deck.

Mr Fearnley said: “Buses have played a huge part in life in Sheffield for 100 years and it is right that we celebrate them.

“They are so important to the city and the economy, to get people to work, and buses have such an important place in our future in helping the environment.”

Howard Turner, chairman of Sheffield Transport Study Group, said: “The livery of buses was an identity for all of them in the city. It’s nice to see them pay homage to the past.”

Paul Fox, a founding member of Sheffield Transport Study Group, said: “I think it’s wonderful the buses have been painted in the old colours. They are the colours I remember from being a child, when my interest started.”