From bus driver to MD — the south west's biggest bus operator appoints new lead for Gloucestershire

A new managing director, who started his career as a bus driver, is named for the south west operations of this major regional transport firm, with a focus on driving the growth of Gloucestershire and the West Country.

By Sarah Kent  |  Published
Chris Hanson has been promoted to managing director of Stagecoach West, just nine months after joining the company as operations director.

Stagecoach West has announced the promotion of Chris Hanson to managing director, just nine months after he joined the company as operations director.

Responsible for leading all bus operations across the west of England in his new role, Chris started his career as a bus driver, quickly rising through the ranks into senior leadership at First Bus, before joining Stagecoach in 2023.

Stagecoach West has over 1,300 employees across nine depots in Gloucestershire, Bristol, Oxford, Swindon and Wiltshire, and part of Chris's new role will be to 'strengthen employee engagement' to make sure that teams are delivering for the customers of its 36 million annual bus journeys.

Chris was lauded in his role as operations director at Stagecoach for introducing a new training structure that ensured 'the company is recruiting the right calibre of driver and providing an excellent training experience.'

On his promotion, Chris said: 'I’m really pleased to be taking on the role of MD and am looking forward to working closer with my senior leadership team to keep us moving forward with our ambitions.

'Communication is a key factor to leading the management teams to continue to always look for the best we can provide to our customers and challenging ourselves to always look to improve.'

Stagecoach chief operating officer, Sam Greer said: 'We’re delighted that our customers, stakeholders and employees in the west can continue to benefit from Chris’s deep understanding of the bus industry.

'We believe that thriving bus services have a critical role to play in local communities and the economy, so we look forward to seeing Chris’s people-first approach support a successful and vibrant local community.'

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