Go South Coast which operates Poole-based Morebus, has stepped in to buy Excelsior Coaches following the decision by former owner Ken Robins to retire and exit the business.
‘We are delighted to have the opportunity of continuing and developing this excellent coach operation under the Excelsior name from the existing depot in Bournemouth,’ said Go South Coast Managing Director, Andrew Wickham. ‘The site in Southcote Road is particularly significant because it already doubles-up as a base for 21 Morebus vehicles and 65 of our drivers conveniently located along the route of our M1 and 13 services. It will provide us with some much-needed additional space for bus parking in the Bournemouth and Poole area.’
Excelsior currently employs a team of 38 people from the surrounding area, who will remain with the business. According to its website, it operates a fleet of 22 high specification coaches offering 16 to 53 seats and including a number to VIP specification. It is a member of Coach Marque and in 2015 received the Medium Sized Operator of the year at the UK Coach Awards for the fourth consecutive year.
The current Excelsior company evolved from the original founded in Bournemouth over 90 years ago. That company gained a reputation for innovation both in its holiday programme and the vehicles deployed. These included left hand drive coaches for European work and a batch of Quest VM coaches, the model designation reflecting the company’s then MD, Vernon Maitland.