TEARS were shed as the last of the iconic Yellow Buses fleet made their final voyage after more than a century of service.
Buses of all shapes and sizes were returned to the Yellow Buses depot in Yeomans Way, Bournemouth for the last time on Thursday afternoon as dozens of current and former drivers with their friends, family and some ‘bus enthusiasts’.
Family was the key word for Irene Bishop, Yellow Buses’ longest-serving female driver who has served the company for nearly 20 years.
An emotional Irene said the company was more than just buses, but rather a family for everyone who worked for it.
She told the Echo: “How I feel is absolutely gutted. When the news trickled in that we were going into administration, we all felt drained and sick.
“When we heard there was a potential buyer, we all held our breath again.
“But to finally get the news yesterday that it’s the end has devastated us. It’s been a very big part of my life.
“Yellow Buses isn’t just about the buses, in our working environment away from the public it’s a family. We are not just colleagues, we are family and that has been all the way through my work here.
“We were a family, and that family broke up tonight. 120 years and it’s all gone.”
Irene, whose last route was to Bournemouth Hospital on Wednesday, said she would not join some of her colleagues by going to Morebus because she was “yellow through and through”.
In addition to the regular fleet, a long-discontinued but perfectly maintained vintage Yellow Buses vehicle was returned to the depot by its private owner to celebrate the occasion.