our heritage

Salisbury reds has a proud heritage that can be traced back to 1915 when Wilts & Dorset ran its very first bus service between Salisbury & Amesbury. The company soon established a reputation for high quality bus & coach services in Wiltshire and surrounding counties.

With a head office in Salisbury the company rapidly expanded and eventually had depots stretching from Blandford to Basingstoke. Its red buses were seen far and wide. Wilts & Dorset also acquired a number of highly regarded independent companies after the Second World War, such as Silver Star and Venture.

In 1969 Wilts & Dorset became part of the National Bus Company and although it became part of neighbouring Hants & Dorset in 1972, the combined fleet was painted in a red livery.

The Wilts & Dorset name was revived in 1983 when Hants & Dorset was split into two separate companies ready for privatisation.

Wilts & Dorset was sold to its management in 1987 and has been part of the Go-Ahead Group since 2003. Although part of a much larger group it is locally managed by people who have a wide knowledge of the area's transport needs and are passionate about customer service.

The Salisbury reds buses were first introduced in 2008 and more recently the popular cross-county X3, X5, X7 and Activ8 routes have been revamped, with lots of people finding them a simple, convenient way to travel for work, shopping and leisure.


The company today is constantly evolving and innovating in order to meet and exceed the expectation of all our customers, and to deliver the high standards set by our forefathers.

Our fleet of 300 buses carries on average, 60,000 people every day. This makes Wilts & Dorset a key player in public transport in Wiltshire. Our aim is always to provide high quality, safe, accessible, affordable and environmentally responsible bus services to the local communities we serve.

x3 double decker
stonehenge tour bus

Stonehenge tour

Salisbury reds caters to visitors to this great city and the Stonehenge Tour, with commentary, is the jewel in the crown of our tourism initiatives. It takes thousands of visitors to Salisbury out to see the magic of Stonehenge and Old Sarum with fantastic views over the Wiltshire countryside from the top deck of the buses. It lets them discover the history of the city's fine cathedral and its associations with the Magna Carta. Our strong partnerships with English Heritage and the Cathedral help make the tour popular and encourage more people to explore what Salisbury has to offer.


With strong, dedicated and customer-focused local managers Salisbury has been at the forefront of innovation. It was the first area within Wilts & Dorset to launch the key, the online ticketing system, and Salisbury was also the first in the area to have a mobile accessible website.

our awards
October 2012
Three winners in the IRTE Skills Challenge
April 2012
Wiltshire business of the year award for services to the community
February 2012
Business excellence awards - Apprentice of the year
87 buses in our fleet