Spotlight on Carole Osborne v2

Spotlight on Carole Osborne, Coach Driver

The Women in Bus and Coach “Spotlight On” initiative shines a light on the incredible contributions of women in all roles across the bus, coach, and community transport sector. From professional drivers and engineers to human resources professionals and CEO’s, the ‘Spotlight On’ will highlight the diverse talents and achievements of women in this dynamic industry.

Today we focus on and find out about:

Carole Osborne
Coach Driver
Marshalls Coaches

What is your role?

I am a coach driver for a family-owned coach company.

How did you get to where you are today?

I have worked hard to achieve everything I have. I started out driving vans and moved to chauffeuring. I found I enjoyed meeting new people but wanted to do something slightly different. I started driving buses and coaches 18 years ago. I have really enjoyed my job. I have held a management role in a previous company but found that I wasn’t getting the job satisfaction from it, so I have gone back to doing what I love.

Did you experience any challenges getting to where you are today?

I am sad to say that I have experienced sexism and harassment, intimidation, and threats of violence.

If so, how did you overcome then?

If I am being honest, I have chosen to ignore the sexist comments which I should never have to do. I have had a conversation with people in question that think it okay to harass anyone in any way. I will not be bullied or intimidated in any way.

When it comes to threatening behaviour, I have in a previous company had to have passengers forcefully removed and at an Airport the police are usually armed, and they go very quiet and tend to get off the coach quickly.

What do you like about the sector?

We are a family of sorts. We may not work for the same companies, but we always help each other out with advice and guidance. We work some long hours, and we usually find someone to have a chat with.

What does a typical day look like?

I start around 6:00am so I am getting up about 4:00am and I am at work about 5:30am. First things first I get the kettle on for the coffee. I get my coach started and walk around check done and I am on my way to pick my passengers. Today I am picking up in Milton Keynes at 7:30am. I will be early just how I like it. I am going to London, so I have planned my route the night before so no surprises. Its good when I have departed within 15 minutes of the pick-up time. I aim to get them into London nice and quickly so the party can make the most of their time. As I am about to depart, I discover the M1 is shut due to an incident, so I have chosen to go down to M40 A4 instead. It takes us 3 hours to get into London when my passengers wish to go, which is longer than usual, but I have kept them informed and they are quite happy. After that I dropped them off and exchanged numbers. I park up on the Victoria Embankment and they will call if they have any problems or when they are ready to be picked up. I have explained that it will be about 20 minutes and we have a 2pm departure time. At 1:20pm I get a call and I pick them up. I have given them an eta of 4:15pm. They were very happy with this as the journey to London was 3 hours, so we were loaded and on our way at 2:45pm. At 4:15pm I had dropped my passengers off and was on my way back to the yard, but my day was not finished yet. I still have to make sure that My coach is ready to be used first thing in the morning. I clean her inside and out and refuel her ready for the next day.

I then check my work for the next day and take pictures of my work if I’m going somewhere new at about 5:30ish.

If I’m going somewhere new I have homework to do, I will plan my route for the next day so I know where I am going with no surprises.

What advice would you give to women thinking about a career in the bus and coach sector?

We work long hours and shift work in this industry and if you have a family and children, they will miss you depending on the type of work you chose to do in this sector. But I do love My job and find it very fulfilling.

Don’t be bullied or intimidated by anyone you do not have to put up with it.

What has been your bus or coach sector career highlight?

I am lucky. I love My job and I have been all over the country with it and been to soe amazing places. We are lucky. I have also made some lifelong friends that I will never forget.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years’ time?

I do love the sort of work I do, and I hope in 5 years I am still driving coaches and meeting new people.

Anything else you would like to share?

This is a great industry to work in, but I do feel that we need to find a way to get young drivers into the industry and pass on the skills and the knowledge of the drivers that will retire from the industry at some point in the future.

Thank you for sharing your story, Carole, you are truly an inspiration!

To find out more about who Carole works for and career opportunities visit: Home – Coach Hire Buckingham | Marshalls Coaches (

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