For 100 years the good people of Edinburgh have been transported around the Capital by the city’s public transport system.
From the horse-drawn omnibuses of the early days to the motor buses and trolley buses that followed, leading to the original trams and now, today’s super-buses, getting around the city has always been accessible to all.
To mark the centenary, a new book, Lothian Buses: 100 Years and Beyond, by Edinburgh bus historian Richard Walter, has been published by Amberley Books.
While compiling it, the author found himself reflecting on the uniqueness of the city’s bus service, in that routes have changed little since its inception.
He explains, “Edinburgh is a unique city in that it is very difficult to avoid crossing the centre as the hub of activity - shops and offices - is within the Princes Street area.
“The High Street, Royal Mile and historic old town cause some challenges in transport access but generally there is an infrastructure in place that is reliable and works well.
“Unlike other places, including London, routes tend to serve areas on either side of the centre and cross the city rather than terminate there.
“This has meant that many key routes have remained very close to their origins.
“Some have been extended like the No 26 which now serves areas in East Lothian.
“Circular routes like the No 1 and No 19 are no longer operating but they still serve much of the areas they always have.
“And Morningside remains almost the same with the 5, 11, 16 and 23 still serving it has it has done for many years.”
Richard’s fascination with the Capital’s buses began as a teenager.
“It was probably due to the vehicles themselves but has grown over the years to be about how the whole operation works in meeting the changing needs of the travelling public,” he says.
“My reasons for compiling the book was to give a flavour of how things have changed but also how other things have stayed much the same.
“It’s not intended to be a comprehensive history of buses in the Lothians but rather a personal view of some of my favourite points of time.
“Obviously vehicle types, liveries and management teams have changed, but Edinburgh and Lothian residents can still be proud of the high standard of public transport that is renowned all over the world.”
Lothian Buses: 100 Years and Beyond, by Richard Walter, is published by Amberley Books, £14.99