First Aberdeen 125th Anniversary Heritage Livery

First Aberdeen reintroduces 1970s and 80s bus design to mark milestone 125 years

First Aberdeen is bringing back the design of one of its 1970s and 80s buses to mark 125 years of public transport in the city.

The bus operator has painted one of today’s buses in a green, cream and orange heritage livery – a design that many will recognise as it mirrors one of its past Alexander bodied, Leyland Atlantean vehicles which served Aberdeen for around 15 years.

The roots of First Aberdeen’s present-day operations can be traced all the way back to 1898 when the Aberdeen Corporation Tramways was introduced that year on 26th August.

Today’s launch of this iconic Aberdeen heritage livery vehicle is the start of First Aberdeen’s celebratory activity to mark the special milestone of public transport in the city, culminating in a full month of celebrations in August as the official anniversary date approaches.

The month of celebrations will end on Saturday 26th August with an Open Day where everyone is welcome to visit First Aberdeen’s King Street depot to see historic buses from as far back as 1930 alongside today’s current vehicles and a host of fun activities for all the family to enjoy.

First Aberdeen’s fleet today is comprised of 98 buses - a number which includes its ever growing, newer and zero emission hydrogen buses. It will soon welcome its first electric buses to its operation as it continues to futureproof its fleet with the environment in mind.

LtoR - Peter Spasov, First Aberdeen driver, David Adam, Head of Operations First Aberdeen, Megan Copland, First Aberdeen driver

David Adam has worked at First Aberdeen for 44 years and is now its Head of Operations in the city. He used to drive these older buses that have been ‘resurrected’ to mark this landmark year and said: “It’s funny seeing these old buses return. It takes me back to the days of driving around with three layers of clothing, with my New Romantics-style Arran jumper on to ward off the cold before we had central heating installed.

“I started out as a bus driver at just 21 and remember having to stand up to put all my effort into turning the steering wheel on buses that looked like this, before we had widespread power steering. My arms were aching after my first few shifts - the younger drivers today don’t know how good they have it!”

“First Bus has always brought a sense of community to Aberdeen, and it’s been great to reflect on that. From get-togethers with colleagues, to the regular customers that you get friendly with on your travels - it’s part of the furniture in the city.

“When I left school at 16 and took a job as a junior clerk in the travel depot, I never imagined that 44 years later I would still be here. But it’s been great to see how the company has evolved over the years, and how it invests in vehicles for the future.”

Duncan Cameron, Managing Director of First Bus Scotland said: “This year we’re enjoying celebrating First Bus’s history in our hometown of Aberdeen. Our buses have served generations throughout the city, and this iconic heritage livery has certainly resurfaced a lot of nostalgia from over the years.

“But as we celebrate our past, and how far we’ve come in delivering affordable and reliable travel in Aberdeen for 125 years, we’re also looking to our future, and planning how we can improve our service and sustainability in the city for the years ahead.

“We’ve been on a great journey so far and are proud to have given Aberdeen more than a lifetime of service. Today, we’re looking forward to a green future, as we strive to invest and innovate to offer Aberdeen sustainable travel for the next 125 years.”


Notes to editors

Notes to editors

About First Bus

First Bus is one of the UK’s largest bus operators. Making journeys easier for our customers, we were the first national bus operator to accept contactless card payments across all of our services and our First Bus App is voted ‘best in class’ amongst UK bus operators. Our most recent investments are in new, state-of-the-art buses across our key networks.

We work proactively with our local authority partners, making a positive impact on air quality, tackling congestion and improving customer experience. We are focused on First Bus becoming a leader in the transition to a low-carbon future and are committed to operating a zero-emission bus fleet by 2035; we have pledged not to purchase any new diesel buses after December 2022. We also operate the Aircoach network in Ireland.

First Bus is a division of FirstGroup.

First Bus is an equal opportunity employer

First Bus is an excellent place to work with opportunities for a rewarding career. 

We are committed to equality of opportunity, diversity and inclusion. We believe diverse experiences and attitudes help us better understand the needs of our customers.

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