The Yorkshire Traction Company Limited was formed in 1902 as the Barnsley & District Electric Traction Company Limited. It operated trams around the Barnsley locality until around 1930. In 1928, prior to the trams being withdrawn, the company was renamed from the Barnsley & District Traction Company Limited (the 'electric' part of the name being dropped some years earlier).
'Tracky' - as the company was affectionately referred to - was sold by the Government in 1986 to the management team lead by Frank Carter. Until selling the business to Stagecoach on 14 December 2005, Carter expanded the business by purchasing other operators including:
Yorkshire Traction and its subsidiaries were owned by The Traction Group, which was owned by Frank Carter, together with small shares owned by a Carter Family Trust and employees who worked for the company at privatisation.
The company operated services across Barnsley, Doncaster, Rotherham and into Leeds, Huddersfield and eventually, Sheffield. From the 1974 merger of Sheffield, Rotherham and Doncaster bus companies until the mid-1990s, the operating area of South Yorkshire was split between South Yorkshire Transport (SYT) and Yorkshire Traction with SYT dominating Sheffield and Rotherham. Through acquisition of Sheffield Omnibus in the early 1990s, South Riding and Andrews, the company gained a significant foothold across Sheffield which has today led Stagecoach to compete directly against First Group in a similar format to the present circumstances in Manchester.
Yorkshire Traction had for decades been a major regional operator of National Express services covering nationwide routes in addition to its regular and long established services in and out of London to Yorkshire towns and cities. Furthermore, it also operated alongside the old NBC brand 'National Travel' which was the short break holiday arm of NBC. Upon privatisation, YTC launched 'Ridings' Travel and became a popular choice for the short break coach holidaymaker within the region.
Yorkshire Traction now operates as Stagecoach Yorkshire
Press reports have also recently noted a deterioration of its relationship with South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive, especially when the PTE revised its charges for Stagecoach vehicles using PTE owned bus stations across the county.