Go North East

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Go North East Angel bus.jpg
Angel 21 bus at the Angel of the North
SloganJourneys taken care of
ParentGo-Ahead Group
FoundedFebruary 1987
Headquarters117 Queen Street, Gateshead, Tyne & Wear, NE8 2UA.
Service areaCounty Durham
Tyne & Wear
East Riding of Yorkshire
North Yorkshire
Service typeBus services
Managing DirectorMartijn Glibert

Go North East is the largest operator of bus services in North East England operating services in the counties of Tyne and Wear, County Durham and Northumberland with a fleet of 721 buses.

It operates through two divisions, North and South, and was previously known as the Northern General Transport Company and Go-Ahead Northern. It was the foundation of today's Go-Ahead Group.


Optare Solo 634 in the new corporate livery in May 2017
Wright Cadet bodied VDL SB120 in the now defunct corporate livery in May 2009
Mercedes-Benz Citaro in Silver Arrows livery
East Lancs Lolyne bodied Dennis Trident 2 in Coaster livery in April 2009
Plaxton Pointer bodied Dennis Dart in Wallsend Links livery in May 2009
Northern Counties Palatine II bodied Volvo Olympian in Yellow Buses livery in May 2009

In February 1987 as part of the privatisation of the National Bus Company, a management buyout led by Martin Ballinger and Chris Moyes purchased the Northern General Transport Company.[1][2] It was the first company of what is now the Go-Ahead Group.[3]

Early expansion saw the acquisition of certain smaller competing bus operators in North East England including Gypsy Queen in 1989[4] and Low Fell Coaches in June 1992. Go-Ahead Northern also became a National Express contractor operating services to the Midlands, North East, North West and South West England.[5]

Go North East previously operated in the Darlington area in late 1990s, mainly services connecting through to Bishop Auckland, Gateshead and Newcastle.

In June 2018, East Yorkshire Motor Services was acquired by Go-Ahead, bringing an end to 30 years of family ownership. EYMS will continue to run as a standalone company within Go North East.


Go North East's headquarters and central engineering department are based at separate locations in Gateshead and Tyne & Wear.[6]

North Division[edit]

The North Division (Go North East Limited)[7] operate services from three depots in three counties. The division operates many trunk services as well as local services around Gateshead, North Tyneside, West Durham and Southern Northumberland.

Depots are located at:[6]

  • Handy Drive, Gateshead - 'Riverside'
  • Rothbury Terrace, Percy Main - 'Percy Main'
  • Tyne Green Lane, Hexham - 'Hexham' formerly Arriva North East[8]
  • High Street, Stanley - 'Stanley'

South Division[edit]

The South Division (Go North East Limited)[9] operates services from six depots in two counties. The division operates many trunk services as well as local services around Sunderland, County Durham and South Tyneside as well as providing National Express services.

Depots are located at:[6]

  • Picktree Lane, Chester-le-Street - 'Chester-le-Street'
  • Deptford Terrace, Sunderland - 'Deptford'
  • Industrial Road, Hertburn Industrial Estate, Washington - 'Washington'
  • Cook Way, North West Industrial Estate, Peterlee - 'Peterlee'
  • Prospect Road, Virginia Buildings Industrial Estate, Crook - 'Crook'

Route branding[edit]

Go North East introduced route branding in 2006. Route branding involves giving each service or group of services its own vehicles and identity. Branded services have bold and colourful liveries and their own logo. Many brands are unique, however, there are some brands which are similar to those of other operators.[10]


As of September 2018, the fleet consisted of 721 buses and coaches.[11]


Go North East's fleet livery was for many years red, light blue and yellow. However many buses have been route branded in specific liveries, resulting in a multi-coloured fleet. Buses that aren't route branded were painted in a red base, carrying the "Northern" logos. From late 2013, the "Northern" logos have started to be phased out, with the company now opting to use the Go North East logos instead.[12] Coaches operating services under contract to National Express are painted in the client's livery.[citation needed] In 2016, a new corporate livery was introduced, red at the front, blue at the back separated by a white strip with a tagline and website featuring above the windows (below the lower deck windows on double deck vehicles).


  1. ^ NBC sale at half way point Commercial Motor 16 May 1987 page 21
  2. ^ Chris Moyes obituary Archived 2 October 2013 at the Wayback Machine. The Times 18 September 2006
  3. ^ History Timeline Archived 5 October 2013 at the Wayback Machine. Go-Ahead Group
  4. ^ Gypsy taken over Commercial Motor 11 January 1990 page 29
  5. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 23 November 2012. Retrieved 23 October 2012.
  6. ^ a b c Depot Locations Go North East
  7. ^ "URI". Data.companieshouse.gov.uk. 13 October 2011. Retrieved 17 October 2016.
  8. ^ "Anticipated acquisition by Go North East Limited of the bus operations of Arriva Northumbria Limited in Hexham, Northumberland" (PDF). Retrieved 17 October 2016.
  9. ^ "URI". Data.companieshouse.gov.uk. 13 October 2011. Retrieved 17 October 2016.
  10. ^ "Home : Go North East". Simplygo.com. Retrieved 17 October 2016.
  11. ^ [1]
  12. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 10 August 2014. Retrieved 9 August 2014.

External links[edit]

Media related to Go North East at Wikimedia Commons