First South Yorkshire

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First South Yorkshire
First South Yorkshire.jpg
Plaxton President-bodied Dennis Trident in November 2013
Parent FirstGroup
Founded 1989
Headquarters Rotherham
Service area Barnsley
North East Derbyshire
Peak District
East Riding of Yorkshire
Service type Bus services
Depots 3
Fleet 510 (March 2014)
Website First South Yorkshire

First South Yorkshire[1] is the largest bus operator in South Yorkshire. It is a subsidiary of FirstGroup.


Alexander RH bodied Dennis Dominators in 2001
Alexander PS bodied Volvo B10M in March 2009
Plaxton Pointer bodied Dennis Dart in September 2008

In 1989 the Mainline brand was introduced by South Yorkshire Transport. Buses operated with Sheffield Mainline names in a bright red and yellow livery, replacing the previous beige and red livery. It was followed by Doncaster Mainline in a silver grey and red livery relieved by a light yellow band and finally Rotherham Mainline, whose buses were painted blue and yellow.

In 1992 the locality was dropped when Mainline became the standard fleetname across South Yorkshire. A common red and yellow livery with silver and blue bands was introduced.

In November 1993 South Yorkshire Transport sold Mainline in a management buyout.[2] Shortly after Stagecoach purchased a 20% stake in the company, however this was sold in 1995 to FirstBus.

In 1998 FirstGroup purchased the remaining 80% shareholding and renamed the business First Mainline. Buses were repainted in a simplified red and yellow livery, reminiscent of the original 1989 Sheffield Mainline livery. In 2000 First Mainline was rebranded as First South Yorkshire and the corporate white, blue and pink livery introduced.

In 2013, First South Yorkshire began to paint buses into First's new Olympia corporate livery, which is an updated version of the former livery.


First South Yorkshire operate services in Doncaster, Rotherham and Sheffield. Due to bus services history and number changes, some routes share service numbers within South Yorkshire.

Service X78 is a limited stop service which goes from Sheffield Interchange via Meadowhall, Rotherham and arriving an hour and a half later in Doncaster Frenchgate Interchange. From Monday to Saturday it operates every ten minutes during the day and every fifteen minutes on Sundays and week day evenings.

Service 91, Airport Services, departs from Doncaster Frenchgate Interchange and arrives approximately twenty-eight minutes later at Robin Hood Doncaster Sheffield Airport. This bus has luggage racks for passengers located at the front of the bus.

First also run Peak District services; 272, from Sheffield, across the South Yorkshire boundary and into Derbyshire in the Peak District. Local or South Yorkshire FirstDay/Week/Month tickets are only valid up to the Sheffield boundary. Special day tickets must be purchased on board to travel on First South Yorkshire buses in Derbyshire.

First also ran 215, 218, 240 to the Peak District, but as of 27 April 2009 First withdrew these services, and TM Travel operate these routes on behalf of Derbyshire County Council.

Since its takeover, First Bus has attracted much criticism for the withdrawal and reduced service frequencies of many service routes throughout the South Yorkshire area. This has been matched with heavy price increases in comparison to the rate of increased fares offered by previous operators Mainline and South Yorkshire Transport.


First branded some services as Overground on bus services with high frequency during the daytime. Based on the London Underground network where each frequent service is given a recognisable colour, each Overground service is, in addition to its running number, colour-coded.

This system originally appeared on the exterior of buses, but this was later removed as buses were upgraded. Now, while the system is still in use on First's official website, it is not used to identify buses on its original scale.


As of March 2014 the fleet consisted of 510 vehicles[3]


First South Yorkshire vehicles operate from three depots. These are Olive Grove in Sheffield, Midland Road in Rotherham, and Leger Way in Doncaster. Midland Road depot also acts as the headquarters of First South Yorkshire.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Companies House extract company no 2332529 First South Yorkshire Limited formerly Mainline Group Limited formerly The Hallam Bus Company Limited
  2. ^ South Yorkshire Transport Authority Sells Off Bus Company to Staff Local Government Chronicle 18 November 1993
  3. ^ FirstGroup Fleetlist Steve White

External links[edit]