A man who had a 50-year career on the buses in Huddersfield has written a book about his experiences.

Ken Farrington, 73, of Berry Brow, has published ‘BUSWORKER: A Real Account of One Man’s Experiences’ which tells the story of his five decades in public transport.

Liverpool-born Ken left his home city to come to Huddersfield when he married wife Sue. He became a bus conductor in February 1969 and later trained as a bus driver.

He was behind the wheel during a time he describes as the “golden era of passenger transport” when car ownership was low and everyone used the bus.

Ken latterly worked for First West Yorkshire and retired in September 2020 to care for his terminally-ill wife, who sadly passed away in 2018.

“It didn’t take me long to get hooked on the industry,” said Ken. “It gets into your blood probably more than any other and I absolutely adored working alongside colleagues from all over the world.”

Ken grew up in the Everton district of Liverpool and rarely encountered any black or Asian people until he came to Huddersfield in the late 1960s.

“I was fascinated to live and work in such a diverse and varied environment,” said Ken.

Ken Farrington and his wife Sue

In 1981 he was elected as a shop steward for the Transport & General Workers’ Union – now Unite – and later became branch secretary. He was heavily involved in tough negotiations during bus de-regulation and privatisation in 1986.

He was also a contemporary of two Labour party stalwarts and Kirklees councillors, who also worked on the buses, Mohan Sokhal MBE, who was Mayor of Kirklees in 2001-2002, and Jamil Akhtar MBE, a racial equality campaigner.

Ken, who was a referee in the Huddersfield District League in his spare time, has many tales to tell from his own experiences and those of his colleagues.

“There’s a story I’ve included which was told to me by a colleague who had been driving a double deck service bus from Holmfirth to Huddersfield,” said Ken.

“One of his passengers had drunk more than was good for him and he was bothering other travellers. The driver looked in his periscope and noticed there were no passengers upstairs so he told the drunk to go up there where he couldn’t bother anyone else.

“The drunk went upstairs but came back down a minute later. When the driver asked him why he replied: ‘It’s too dangerous. There’s no driver up there!’”

The book is now available to buy on Amazon and Ken said: “I decided to write the book mainly for therapy because I was missing the job so much!

“I hope it helps to have a permanent reminder of those 50 glorious years that went all too quickly.

“It’s a fantastic industry to work in and I hope it might inspire others to follow the same path. Whether they work on the buses or not I hope the book is an enjoyable read.”

The book can be purchased online HERE