Wardle Transport

Wardle Transport

Optare Versa in September 2009
Parent D&G Bus
Founded 1963
Defunct 8 May 2015
Headquarters Stoke-on-Trent
Service area Derbyshire
Service type Bus services
Routes 39 (October 2013)
Fleet 64 (December 2010)
Website www.wardletransport.com
X50 branded Wright Eclipse Gemini bodied VDL DB250 in September 2012

Wardle Transport is a bus operating company based in Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire, England. Formed in 1963 as Jack's of Norton, it expanded from 2001 to operate a network of local bus routes using over 60 vehicles.


Wardle Transport was founded in 1963 by Doug Wardle. It initially traded as Jack's of Norton, and was run alongside travel agent Wardle Travel. For its first 38 years of existence, the company operated a small fleet of minibuses on school services. In 2002 contracts to operate two routes in Stoke-on-Trent were won; these were operated with three Optare Alero minibuses hired from Stoke-on-Trent City Council. One of these routes was withdrawn in 2004. Following First Potteries maximum allowable vehicles being cut, Wardle gained three school services, acquiring its first double-decker vehicles to operate the routes.[1][2]

A new route linking Hanley, Haywood Hospital and Burslem was launched in early 2006. The route, supported by the city council, replaced a route withdrawn by another operator, but was initially found not to be commercially viable.[3]

In 2007, the company won a contract to operate services to Stoke City Football Club home matches, initially using four double-deck buses.[2] The services proved popular and the following season saw eight buses used.[4] Four new commercial routes were also introduced in 2008.[2]

A new direct service linking Blurton to Hanley, branded as Plumline, was introduced in 2008. An Optare Versa single-decker was bought for use on the route.[5]

In December 2010, Wardle Transport was sold to Arriva and placed under the control of its Arriva Midlands subsidiary.[6][7] Arriva stated that Wardle's identity would be retained.[8] At the time of the takeover, Wardle employed 105 staff and operated a fleet of 64 buses and ran 18 scheduled services.[9] A new livery of two-tone red and white applied in Arriva's corporate style was introduced in June 2011.[10]

In August 2011 Arriva Midlands purchased the Staffordshire routes of D&G Bus with 46 routes and 30 buses and these were integrated into Wardle Transport.[11][12]

In April 2012, Wardle Transport commenced operating route X50 to Derby.[13] On 9 May 2015, D&G Bus purchased Wardle Transport back from Arriva Midlands.[14][15]


As at October 2013 Wardle Transport operate 39 bus routes.[16]


  1. History of Wardle Transport Wardle Transport
  2. 1 2 3 Beeton, Cliff (November 2008). "Wardle Transport: A story of steady growth". Buses. Ian Allan Publishing (644): 26–28.
  3. ""Use it or lose it" bus message". BBC News. 24 February 2006. Retrieved 2 February 2011.
  4. "Buses ease soccer snarl-ups". The Sentinel. 16 August 2008. Retrieved 2 February 2011.
  5. "Purple patch for new bus". The Sentinel. 29 November 2008. Retrieved 4 February 2011.
  6. Arriva Midlands announces acquisition of Wardle Transport Arriva 8 December 2010
  7. "Arriva boosts Midlands bus operation with Wardle Transport purchase". Transport Xtra. 9 December 2010.
  8. "Arriva buys Wardle Transport". Indiser Media. 9 December 2010.
  9. Millar, Alan (January 2011). "Arriva acquisition takes it into First country". Buses (670): 15.
  10. Lidstone, John G. (July 2011). "Fleet News England & Wales". Buses (676): 60–61.
  11. Arriva Midlands acquires D&G busandcoach.com 10 June 2011
  12. D&G Buses bought by Arriva - owners blame subsidy cuts for sale The Sentinel 11 June 2011
  13. Brand New X County Bus Link Coming Soon Arriva
  14. D&G BUs to takeover Wardle Transport routes
  15. D&G buys Wardle Transport Bus & Coach Buyer 18 March 2015
  16. Timetables Wardle Transport
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