Lothian awarded National Transport Trust ‘Red Wheel’ for Annandale Street depot

A group of people standing next to the Red Wheel outside Lothian's Annandale Street depot.
A group of people standing next to the Red Wheel outside Lothian's Annandale Street depot.
On Thursday 27 June, representatives from the National Transport Trust alongside Lothian’s Managing Director, Sarah Boyd, unveiled ‘Red Wheel’ plaque on the exterior of Central Depot in Edinburgh’s Annandale Street.
The Red Scheme was created by the National Transport Trust in recognition and commemoration of sites of historical importance to transport heritage in the UK.
Built as an industrial hall for the Edinburgh Exhibition Association in 1922, Central was later converted to a depot for Edinburgh Corporation buses in 1926. The garage was extended in 1933, and then again in 1963, and by this time nearly 250 buses operated out of the Central Garage, which still has its very distinctive glass dome roof.
To this day, the building serves as home to our main city operations. More than 900 colleagues, including drivers, engineers, catering and head office teams, work out of Annandale Street daily. It is also home to our impressive Control Room – the heart of our operation – where all our buses are monitored for timekeeping and a watchful eye is kept over traffic conditions and incidents across the city.
John Yellowlees, Vice President of the National Transport Trust, said: “The bus is Britain’s most popular mode of public transport, yet how little its heritage has been celebrated.
“Of the 180 Red Wheels awarded since 2009 by the National Transport Trust to designate sites of transport heritage across Britain, only a handful are at bus locations such as Victoria Coach Station or Taunton Bus Station – and until now none were in Scotland.
“I therefore congratulate Lothian Buses in obtaining Red Wheel status for the fine facility that is Annandale Street.”
Sarah Boyd, Managing Director of Lothian, said: “We’re delighted to officially unveil our ‘Red Wheel’, which marks an important moment in our company’s long history in the city. It is often said that Lothian is part of the fixtures and fittings of Edinburgh and so it is rightly fitting that our incredible 105 year old Lothian is honoured as part of this National Transport Trust programme.”
Lothian’s ‘Red Wheel’ is available to view by the public walkway outside Central in Annandale Street (please note this is an operational site, therefore public access to Central is strictly prohibited). Just scan the QR code on the plaque to learn more.