Passengers board one of the first of Manchester's franchised bus services. The Go-Ahead Group mobilised the first services under the city's new Bee Network from depots in Bolton and Wigan this morning.

Go-Ahead mobilises Manchester's first Bee Network buses

  • More than 600 Go-Ahead colleagues involved in overnight launch of Manchester's first franchised buses
  • Go North West takes over depots in Bolton and Wigan
  • Manchester's mayor, Andy Burnham, on hand to see the first buses off shortly after 5am

The first Bee Network buses left depots in Bolton and Wigan this morning, marking the start of a new era for public transport in Greater Manchester.

A fleet of 320 buses will operate 50 routes – the first piece in place of a network eventually intended to span buses, trams, trains and bikes across the city.

The mobilisation marked a culmination of months of preparation by a team of 600 people at Go North West, which won the first two contracts to operate Bee Network buses. Go North West’s parent company, The Go-Ahead Group, deployed bus drivers from across the UK to help with this weekend’s launch.

The Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, was at Bolton’s Weston Street bus depot to see off the first bus, along with Christian Schreyer, Chief Executive of The Go-Ahead Group. 

Nigel Featham, Managing Director, Go North West, said: “It’s been a real pleasure to welcome the first customers on board our Bee Network buses – the response we’ve had from the public today has been terrific.

“We’ve been preparing for today’s launch for many months and it’s fantastic to see the buses out on the road. This is, of course, only the start of the Bee Network and there is a lot of work still to come. But our goal is to work with the Mayor to deliver world class transport for a world class city, Manchester.”

Contact Information

Go-Ahead Communications

Notes to editors

For further information please contact:

Andrew Clark
07932 677184

Chloe Leach O’Connell
07796 276598