Norwich Buses Blog on Holiday - Part Six

The Lee & Beaulah name was the founding father of EYMS as
we know them today (East Yorkshire Motor Services)
Day six of my Yorkshire holiday was spent on a family outing, with very little bus spotting! In the evening, I took a look into the history of East Yorkshire Motor Services to make up for it, which I have compiled into a special look at the operator.

In 1919, a Yorkshire chap under the name of Ernest John Lee purchased a fourteen seat Model-T Ford for a stage carriage service he had formed between Elloughton and Hull. Three years later and Ernest John Lee formed a partnership with Mr Beaulah to form Lee and Beaulah. Elsewhere, H.A. Harvey had formed Hull & District Motor Services Ltd for his service between Kirk Ella and Hull.

In 1926, the East Yorkshire Motor Services name first appeared as British Electric Traction brought out both Hull & District Motor Services Ltd and Lee and Beaulah. Sixty two years later, British Electric Traction was brought out by Tilling Group, who one year later were absorbed into the National Bus Company. By the early 70s, the fleet was running in the then ubiquitous poppy red NBC livery.

When Tilling absorbed into the National Bus Company, East
Yorkshire was forced to drop its livery for poppy red and white.
In 1987, East Yorkshire was privatised in a management buyout. In the lead up to this, the fleet sat comfortably at around 200 vehicles and had shared management with Lincolnshire Roadcar. United Automobile Services depots at Scarborough and Pickering became part of EYMS Group, and formed the Scarborough and District operation.

As the EYMS Group, growth really came in the 1990s. Fingland of Manchester were acquired in in 1995, followed by the purchase of Whittle of Kiddlemaster in 2004. Both these operations have since been sold, the former to First and Bullocks and the latter to Johnson Bros Tours. Both these operations were kept separate to the East Yorkshire identity. As well as these, at least fourteen independent operators in Yorkshire were acquired and absorbed into the ever growing fleet between 1987 and 2009.

In the modern day, East Yorkshire Motor Services operate nearing four hundred buses and coaches. It is clear from observation that East Yorkshire has always been supportive of their local manufacturer Plaxton and mothership Alexander Dennis, though in more recent years a move has been made towards Irish manufacturer Wrightbus. Much of the coaching fleet is made up of Plaxton bodied vehicles, and there are a number of batches of Plaxton and Alexander Dennis service buses.

The massively varying EYMS network has lead to a strange mix
of vehicles types, including this Plaxton Primo.
Network wise, I am unable to find a map - suffice to say, however, I have mapped out in my head the sheer scope of the network. Southwards, bus services reach Scunthorpe in North Lincolnshire - including in a joint venture from Hull with Stagecoach. During the summer, the burgundy and cream buses can be found as North was Danby, at the very North of the North Yorkshire Moors. A mix of city and rural work is both undertaken, with extensive urban services in Hull, Scarborough and Bridlington. Links between key towns and cities are made, including York to Hull, Scarborough to Hull and Hull to Scunthorpe.

As well as the local bus network, East Yorkshire Motor Services are a National Express contractor - operating a total of nine services. Services operated span from Scarborough, Hull and Mablethorpe into London. Rather impressively, East Yorkshire Motor services also have an involvement with the running on the 031 from Portsmouth to and from London. 

East Yorkshire are a company I have fell rather fond of, and one which has received a very complimenting email since my stay. More on that will appear in the final part of the special series, acting as a review and sum up of my opinions and findings.
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About Kieran Smith

Norwich Buses Blog was founded in December 2013 by Sam Larke after he left another popular blog, Norwich Bus Page. Since it's launch, the site has grown dramatically, especially whilst written solely by Kieran Smith during 2015. The blog is now in it's third year and we look forward to more success and growth in the future. If you think you'd make a good writer for Norwich Buses Blog, please do get in touch via email: samuel.larke@gmail.com
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