Horse-bus services in Bristol were started in 1887 by the Bristol Tramways and Carriage Company. The horse-buses were replaced by motor buses from 1906, when the company started a service from the Centre to Clifton.

From 1887 to 1986, Bristol Tramways (renamed Bristol Omnibus Company in 1957) had an almost complete monopoly of bus services in and from Bristol. The exceptions were in the 1920s, when Greyhound Motors provided competition until taken over by Bristol Tramways in 1928; a few small independent operators, the last of which, the Dundry Pioneer, was acquired in 1950; and Red & White Services, which started joint services with Bristol Omnibus Company to South Wales when the Severn Bridge opened in 1966.

Between 1937 and 1978 Bristol Omnibus Company was the operating partner in Bristol Joint Services, a joint undertaking with Bristol Corporation which controlled bus services within the city. The company owned and operated the buses, and shared revenues with the Corporation.

File:Badgerline DAE511K.jpg

Bristol Omnibus Company was state-owned from 1948, but in 1980 the Thatcher government embarked on a programme of privatisation and deregulation of bus services. In preparation the company was split into two operating units in 1983: the city services, which in 1985 adopted the brand Bristol City Line, and the country services, which in 1986 became a separate company, Badgerline Ltd. Badgerline was sold to its management in 1986, and the original company was sold in 1987 to Midland Red West, who kept the City Line brand.

Deregulation meant that Badgerline was able to begin bus services within the city, in competition with City Line. However, in 1988 Midland Red West was itself acquired by Badgerline, so that Bristol's bus services were again controlled by a single company.

In 1995 Badgerline merged with Grampian Regional Transport to become First Bus, later renamed FirstGroup. First adopted a policy of common branding, and the City Line and Badgerline brands were dropped. Bristol Omnibus Company was renamed First Bristol Buses in 1999.

A few small independent operators have competed with Badgerline, City Line and First since deregulation. Buglers ran a few tendered local services from 1988. Abus began with a competing service to Keynsham in 1991. South Gloucestershire Bus & Coach built up a small network of local services from 1997 until it was taken over in 2007 by Rotala, who rebranded the services Wessex Connect. However, the independents have been unable to shake the dominance of First.

Former routesEdit

This is a list of former bus routes within the Greater Bristol area.

Service Route Notes References
2 Similar to current route 1 (Broomhill to Southmead) Became part of route 55 between Temple Meads and Southmead [1]
18 Hanham - Downend - UWE/Filton - Westbury - Shirehampton In the most part replaced with 517/518
21 Rookery Farm - Westbury (via Henleaze Road)
22 Rookery Farm - Westbury (via kings Drive)
22A Similar to route 22?
23 Avonmouth - Sea Mills - Westbury - Henleaze - Centre - Rookery Farm Later replaced by Service 523 between Avonmouth & Westbury.
26 Lockleaze - Ashton Vale
X29 Bristol Bus Station - M32 - Winterbourne - Iron Acton - North Yate Replaced with X27
X30 Bristol Bus Station - M32 - Winterbourne - Coalpit Heath - North Yate Formed 1/2 hourly service with X40
36A Centre - Brislington
40 Old route not new one (similar to old 43 service)
X40 Bristol Bus Station - M32 - A4174 - Coalpit Heath - North Yate Some peak hour extensions to Chipping Sodbury
42 Similar to route 41 [2][3]
47 Centre - Blackhorse
50 Centre - Wells Road - Knowle - Rookery Farm
Old 52 Centre - Blackhorse
55 Stockwood - |Centre - Southmead [4]
57 Henbury - Broadmead
N61 Centre - Filton
X62 Centre - Mangotsfield [5]
X65 Shirehampton - Centre - Cribbs Causeway
X67 Centre - Cherry Gardens
X68 Centre - Oldland Common
69 Studentlink (U.W.E)
X72 Centre to Bradley stoke via M32, operated by South Glos Buses
74 Centre - Bradley Stoke
X74 Centre - Bradley Stoke (via M32)
77 Centre - Henbury merged into service [6]
80 Hartcliffe to Broadmead, was operated by Somerbus, then by Ambassador Travel as X80
80 Broadmead (Haymarket) - Stoke Bishop (Stoke Park Road). Operated by First Bristol
82 Centre - Bradley Stoke - Cribbs Causeway Became service 73
Old Old 88 Centre - Park Estate
88 Broadmead - Knowle - Broadmead
89 Broadmead - Knowle
91 Broadmead - Centre - Bedminster - Broadwalk
97 Fishponds - Kingswood via Downend, Blackhorse, Mangotsfield, and Staplehill
98 Centre? - U.W.E
99 Centre - Downs - UWE
157 ? - Bradley Stoke North
180 Rail Link - Temple Meads to Broadmead
340 Bristol Bus Station - Fishponds - Downend - Coalpit Heath - Chipping Sodbury 1/2 hourly, route as 341/342 to Yate Shopping Centre then direct to Chipping Sodbury, formed 341/342 on return journey.
341 Bristol Bus Station - Fishponds - Downend - Coalpit Heath - South Yate - Chipping Sodbury Hourly, route as 342 diverted via Rodford Way rather than Shire Way in South Yate, formed 340 on return journey. [7][8]
355 Bristol - Long Ashton - Nailsea - Clevedon
429 St Mary Redcliffe - Avonmouth
501 Similar to current route 1
502 Similar to former route 2
506 Similar to route 6 [9]
520 Similar to current route 20
521 Similar to former route 21
523 Westbury - Avonmouth
527 - 530 Avonmouth & Lawrence Weston / Shirehampton - Centre - Hartcliffe [10]
544 North Common to Bristol city centre
545 Oldland (Cherry Tree Pub) to Bristol city centre
548 [11]
550 [12]
572 Centre - ? [13]
574 Unknown
905 Tolgate car park - Broadmead

See alsoEdit

List of bus routes in Bristol
Transport in Bristol


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