The very first motor bus services in East Anglia were operated by the Great Eastern Railway Company, and although these started in Suffolk, services were soon provided within Norfolk as well. In 1931, the Eastern Counties Omnibus Company was formed from four existing small bus companies. With its head office at Thorpe Road, Norwich, the company ran most services in Norfolk, Suffolk and Cambridgeshire. One source of variety was provided by Great Yarmouth, where the municipality ran its own services, with a smart fleet of blue buses. A few independent operators, notably Simond’s of Botesdale, Dack’s of Terrington and a few others, were also to be found.
Over the years, Eastern Counties became part of the Firstbus Group, later purchasing Great Yarmouth Transport. Meanwhile, many smaller companies emerged from the chaos of deregulation to establish themselves as significant players in the Norfolk bus scene. Recently, other major groups have taken over some of the independents. Konectbus and Anglian fell into the hands of the Go Ahead Group, while Stagecoach bought out Norfolk Green.
Transport enthusiast and photographer John Law has been photographing buses in the county since the early 1970s. In this book, he takes a look at these companies and their operations and tells the story of Norfolk’s buses with a collection of images that will bring back memories of the county from times past.