THE CEO of Reading Buses will be leaving the company this July, it has been announced.

Martijn Gilbert, who took the helm of the bus service nearly four years ago, will take up the role of Managing Director at the Go-Ahead Group’s North East bus business, in Newcastle, this July.

Martijn said: “It is with a degree of sadness that I will be leaving Reading Buses, which will always have a fond place in my heart, to take up a new and somewhat bigger challenge elsewhere in the UK bus profession. By the time I leave I will have done nearly four years in post and during that time I have been exceptionally privileged to work with a great team of people and so many enthusiastic and supportive stakeholders.

“Together we have been through many enjoyable and interesting times and achieved great things that I am immensely proud to have been a part of. The company also continues to be on an exciting journey in tackling and adapting to the challenges of growing congestion, emerging technologies, changing retail, work and travel trends, economic pressures and also pursuing new growth opportunities.

“My focus in my remaining three months will continue to be on working with our stakeholders and the team here at Reading Buses to ensure that we do all we can to deliver high standards of service to our customers and also ensure that our company has a secure and prosperous future for the communities we serve, our employees and our shareholder.”

The process to recruit a successor has now commenced and in the meantime the company’s senior leadership team, focussed on Finance/Commercial, Operations, People, Engineering and Innovation, will continue to ensure the important continuity of service and relationships is maintained.

The Company’s Chairman, David Sutton, said: “Martijn has given Reading Buses four years of excellent and committed service, and has moved the company forward in many ways by his imaginative and positive leadership.

"Whilst we are very sorry to be losing him, we wish him all the best in his future career. There can be no doubt that he will have a great future in the bus industry, and we will watch his progress with interest, and some pride, as well as keeping in touch on a regular basis.”