TRANSPORT operator FirstGroup has announced a major appointment.

The group, which runs buses in the Huddersfield area and operates the First Transpennine Express rail service, has hired former London Underground managing director Tim O’Toole as chief operating officer and deputy chief executive.

Mr O’Toole, who will take up his post next Monday, was also previously president and chief executive of American rail network Consolidated Rail Corporation.

Nicola Shaw, director of UK bus and First’s German and Irish operations, is to step down from the board to pursue other interests.