Book review – Scotland’s Independent Coach Operators

What’s the story?

As with everything, the coach industry has changed beyond all recognition over the last few decades. In this beautifully illustrated book, packed full of photos from the past few decades, author David Devoy has created an interesting history of the independent coach operating business in Scotland. It may sound like a dry subject matter on the surface, but look beneath that, and there’s some great stories to be told. Each photo contains information on the relevant bus, and its history.


David Devoy looks at some well-known names from the last five decades, many of them sadly now just a memory. Most firms had their own liveries and took great pride in the presentation of their coaches, often striving to keep up with the Jones’s, allowing for a wonderful variety of photos to be shown off here. This book will bring back memories of school trips or bus outings for many, with their nylon felt covers, in shades of browns and oranges. The photos are really impressive, having been well-researched, showing the ever-changing backgrounds of Scotland’s cities, towns, villages and roads.


The coach industry is obvious a dedicated market, and whilst it will have an immediate appeal to those who have worked in the filed, and their immediate families, it takes a quick flick through the pages for the reader to realise there’s a lot more to it than meets the eye.


If you’ve been a regular on buses over the years, then this will definitely appeal. If you remember trips to the seaside on a  blistering hot day, or being stuck on a motorway for hours on  end, as the rain hammered against the steamed up windows, then you’re in for a treat, especially if you can find a bus company or design you remember.

Read a sample here

Scotland’s Independent Coach Operators sample


This reader has no connection with the coach operating industry, but still found the book to be of real interest. The nostalgia of the subject matter gave it an appeal that may not have been initially there, and the selection of imagery is perfect, covering companies the length and breadth of Scotland.

Scotland’s Independent Coach Operators by David Devoy, published by Amberley, £14.99.

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