Every great journey needs a plan – and experienced bus industry manager Paul Sammonds is now in the driving seat as newly-appointed Planning Manager with North of England bus operator Transdev.
35-year-old Paul joins at a vitally important time for Transdev, as the business looks to drive forward its plan for the road to recovery following relaxation of travel restrictions imposed during the UK’s national COVID-19 lockdown earlier this year.
Working as part of Transdev’s commercial team, led by Commercial Director Paul Turner, the Planning Manager role covers seven operating subsidiaries across the North from the team’s base in Burnley, Lancashire.
Prior to joining Transdev, Paul’s previous role as Commercial Manager for Stagecoach Yorkshire saw him leading on several successful product launches over three years with the Barnsley-based bus operator.
Paul’s new role will see him reviewing Transdev’s local bus network as the North’s economy picks up and travel patterns change – and he’ll be looking for fresh opportunities to boost customer numbers with more eye-catching new branded bus routes to join the firm’s networks on both sides of the Pennines.
Paul said: “It’s a challenging yet exciting time to come on board with Transdev, which has won an excellent reputation as one of the most progressive and innovative names in the bus industry. My role involves network planning, both in terms of developing the existing network and finding new opportunities for growth.
“Travel habits for work have undoubtedly changed as a proportion of businesses continue with staff working from home for all or some of the time, while the market for local and regional leisure journeys looks promising with many more people ready to discover all that our region has to offer for day trips and short breaks.
“Transdev are always one step ahead of the wider bus industry in marketing great brands and repositioning buses as places people really want to be seen in. It’s that fantastic reputation that attracted me to become part of this great team, and I can’t wait to get started.”
Transdev CEO Alex Hornby said: “I’m delighted Paul has joined us – he brings a wealth of experience with large bus operators in Yorkshire and Manchester, as well as that all important grounding – like many of us have – in understanding the role of a bus driver. He has a track record and has already achieved a lot of positive results with new product launches in very competitive markets.
“Paul’s fresh ideas and forward thinking will help us develop our Back to Bus strategy for these changing times and create new opportunities to develop and grow our business across the North – and as always, our customers will be the first to benefit.”
Paul first joined the bus industry in 2005 as a part-time bus driver in Huddersfield during his student years, before graduating in Transport and Logistics Management at the University of Huddersfield.
He then joined transport group First as a trainee scheduler and became part of a team delivering regional efficiency projects in West Yorkshire and Greater Manchester, while expanding its bus network with the acquisition of the long-established Finglands bus business in Manchester.
Paul is married and lives in Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, and his leisure interests include running, listening to funk and soul music – and home baking, taking first prize in his local pub’s bake-off for his tasty home-made sausage rolls!