Monday 15th May 2006
next update week ending 27th May 2006
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The past week has seen several items of interest including a new operator in Oxford, with Routemasters, the Slough Running Day, news from Thames Transit on their long awaited Scanias and the annual Carters Steam Fair at West Wycombe. The roadworks at Thornhill on the A40 enter a new phase and Liverpool won the F A cup after a thrilling game.
Slough Running Day
Several readers sent contributions for this week's page and as I was unable to attend this was very much appreciated.
Nigel Peach wrote "You probably have a lot of photos of today's Slough & Windsor Running Day, but here are a few more which may or may not be of interest.
Arriving at Slough Bus Station with a friend, on the 441 from Wycombe (RML 2666), we were just deciding where to go first when RM1 rolled into view! That decided us! I've never travelled on that before. It was running the 474 to Burnham Beeches, a perfect start to a day of running here and there on different buses. Another of the unexpected highlights was travelling through Windsor Great Park on White Bus Services route 1 - a very scenic trip - I've never been through WGP before.
My pictures are as follows:
RM1 & RM216 at Burnham Beeches - front and rear views for comparison.
RCL2260 on the 457 in Uxbridge Bus Station.
RM1989 (Blackpool Transport 530) on the 353 at Gerrards Cross.
White Bus Services Bedford C668 WRT on their route 1 in Windsor Great Park.
All in all a good day, and thanks must go to Peter Cartwright and his team for another successful Running Day."
Peter Edgar also sent some interesting pictures saying " 6 photo's from today's event at Slough & Windsor,
This picture is of RML2676 in Windsor with the next of RLH48 and then RF406. Finally RT3496 in a very nostalgic picture by the Castle.
In days gone Thames Valley served Windsor and the past is recaptured in the picture by Peter Edgar last Sunday.
Finally Colin Cooke sent a selection which are also most interesting saying "Malcolm...take your pick.....not the best angles but I feel it captured the event.....
Like last year I decided to stay put in Windsor........The traffic was better than last year although it had it's moments, especially with the continuous stream of Horse Boxes exiting the Royal Horse show...."
Who goes first !!!!
RM1 passes Windsor Castle and RLH48.
A tight fit for RLH48.
All the sixes, RML2666 leaves Windsor for Beaconsfield.
Oh for the days when the RT reigned supreme.
The pictures below were sent in by Terry Wong.
My very sincere thanks to my contributors who have enabled all of us not fortunate to be at the event with a flavour of the days proceedings.
Delays to traffic and services resulting from work at Thornhill Park & Ride junction on the A40.
The roadworks at Thornhill have entered a new phase from today, Monday, when a contraflow system has been instated at the junction for the car park. There are two lanes for Oxford bound traffic but only one for London bound traffic.
I spoke with a very helpful person from Jacobs Babtie last Friday and was impressed by the efforts which have been made to try to minimise the delays and congestion which will be caused by this work.
It is intended to have the traffic lights at the junction hand controlled to hopefully keep the traffic flowing. Delays are inevitable and this will doubtless affect the coach and bus services using the Park & Ride.
Routemasters in Oxford - further news
Following the short report in last week's page I have received more news and pictures of the new operator. Dave Stewart writes "You had a mention on last week's bulletin about some RMs seen at Cowley Road Oxford. This may not be connected but I'll bet that it is. In Western TA N&P issue 2291 (28MArch) there was a new O Licence application (5 discs) for Akhtar Ali, with a base at the Old Bingo Hall, 300 Cowley Road Oxford and with a Transport Manager Keith Wheeler. The O Licence was granted in Issue 2294 (09May). Thus far there has not been any application for any passenger service. Meanwhile, the stock of RMs at the Tolworth store has depleted over the past week. As I say, it may not be connected,. but.... over to locals to find out please"
Rob Williams writes "I stopped off on my way to work this morning to investigate. There are no less than FOUR Routemasters parked behind the old Bingo Hall. I was able to identify three but couldn't see around to get the fourth.
WTS 418A (RM909) (visible from Cowley Road)
??? (partially visible from Cowley Road) - this turns out to be RM191 as seen below.
SSL 806 (RM120) (at rear)
PVS 828 (RM1018) (at rear)
The three I could ID are all Marshall refurb examples and appear to be straight out of service from London.
PVS 828 also has the honour of being former Reading Mainline No.18."
Gavin Francis sent in a number of pictures of the buses in question.
RM121 and 1018share space with RM191 all seen at the old Bingo Hall on the Cowley Road.
Pictures by Gavin Francis.
So, all we need now is what are they going to be used for??
Again my thanks to all my contributors, both old and new. This week's report is somewhat shorter than usual but I hope still with interest to everyone.
Malcolm Crowe - Monday 15th May 2006
Visit the "OXFORD & CHILTERN BUS PAGE " Archives from October 2002 to date
News of the local companies – 15th May 2006
Ben Carter wrote saying "Attached is a picture of a Dart on the 315 in Lane End.
Also I'd like to request more pictures of buses out on routes, like this, or at their terminus rather than in the drab bus station. This is taken from a window in my house. The 315 on Sundays, evenings and bank holidays is now the only route to serve Archers Way, Lane End since the 338 was withdrawn in 1999. The other routes to Lane End (30 & 339) serve Widdenton View and Mount Pleasant."
Well I hope Ben likes the pictures below taken by Gavin Francis, especially the one on the 30 near to Lane End. I saw this bus later in Lane End and it had seemingly broken down.
Volvo 3853 unloading schoolchildren at Stokenchurch last week. Note the large advert for the Octagon recently applied.
Somewhat off route in Lane End 3867 is seen loading in that village.
Gavin was on hand to catch this first shot of the third Agoraline which had just arrived at Carousel on the 9th May.
It was as yet unregistered.
Some nice pictures have been received from Gavin Francis and show members of the current fleet.
OBC have now returned to service Volvo coaches 70 and 71. They have seemingly been repainted or at least refreshed and when I saw 70 on the M40 it looked very smart in full livery.
Chris Maxfield caught X3 branded 833 on the 2B last week.
Today Monday Dart 411 was spotted on the 35.
Curly writes "On 11 May 2006, 835 was on the 13B and 8 road was fully single door 6xx operated. 601 was working the 35A/B."
Richard Sharman sent two pictures of ex Oxford buses working for fellow Go-Ahead operator Diamond Bus in Birmingham One of is of specific interest relating to OBC.
The Dennis pictured above was on loan from Plaxtons of Scarborough from 21/10/97 until 24/4/98 when as 699 it covered the cycle of modifications to the Volvo B10B/Verde fleet over a period of six months. It was received in overall white livery and red panels with Cityline logos were applied. 699 was operated mainly on service 2 routes and was christened ‘Moby Dick’ by the operating staff. The vehicle was owned by Dennis Vehicles, Guildford to where it returned.
I have a picture somewhere but have so far been unable to find same.
The photo taken by Dave Rogers in OCBP 176 where the question was asked 'is it an ex Oxfordshire operators vehicle'.
The answer is yes, it left the county in June 2004 and spent just over eight years with Pearce Coaches, Berinsfield.
N129 MBW Scania K113CRB with Van Hool C57F new in March 1996.
Thanks to Ken MacKenzie - Oxfordshire Others Sub Editor for the PSV Circle for the above information.
Steve Bunce writes to say "After all the confusion about the R21 (sorry about that) you did ask if a better picture of either FJ06URR or URS was available. Well, please find an attachment of URR taken last week outside Rickmansworth Tescos. It is now fitted with blinds for Uxbridge but still shows a slip-board for Maple Cross - very confusing indeed!"
Dave Rogers writes to send a picture of another Brookesbus model which will land in our shops shortly. It is of Trident 18197 which I remember taking to Silverstone last year.
As mentioned above under the OBC heading, Richard Sharman sent another picture of an ex Oxfordshire area Dennis now with Diamond Bus in Birmingham.
Once 20902 with Stagecoach, this Lance was damaged in the Carlisle floods.
A tight fit for 18127 operating the 100 service under the station bridge. - Picture by Gavin Francis.
The Brookes Tridents are often used on other services when not required for the U1 or U5.
Here 18198 is seen on the 27. Picture by Chris Maxfield.
Brookes Tridents have also been seen in the last week on services 32 and 33.
An interesting assortment of pictures have been received this week.
Chris Maxfield caught this sister Metroliner to the one shown last week. Nr 98 with Yorkshire Traction
this coach is set to become 50001 and is seen on a Megabus working in London.
The last of the old M A N Tubes to leave Oxford was 50040, at that time - last November - still in red.
It is now based in Perth and is in full Megabus livery. Seen last week in London and taken by Gavin Francis.
It seems that Manchester is very short of Megabus liveried vehicles and is often to be seen using
Magic Bus Olympians on the Manchester services. Pictures by Chris Maxfield.
It has been reported that ex Tube 50048 has been involved in a fire and maybe well be withdrawn or cannibalised.
I am advised by the company that the first of the new long awaited Scanias has arrived at the dealers and is under preparation prior to delivery. Keep your eyes open for the first sighting in service on the X39.
If you have a digital camera and wish to submit photos for this page please send them to the me at
A delightful cameo is created each time Carters come to town with this Bristol L with its little garden.
The "town" in this case was at West Wycombe last weekend.
Quite some care was taken in the layout this year where the various tractor units were lined up in a half moon behind the dodgems.
What a mouth watering selections of Scammels were on show.
Terry Wong wrote to send an ex Reading Titan now with Wiltax, saying - reported on various e-groups about this Titan
which was repainted by Wiltax purchased not long ago but on South West Trains rail replacement Hounslow-Barnes.
The vehicle was on standby and on display at Hounslow railway Station. Hope this is of interest to your Reading punters.
HISTORY IN PICTURES AND WORDS
If you have any pictures or historical memories and wish to submit them for this page please send them to the me at
House's of Watlington.
Brian Wright wrote this week saying "I live in Abingdon (formerly in Henley from 1950 to 1971). I have just spotted your website. I would imagine you might find the two attached pictures of interest. I don't know the exact date they were taken (in Henley Market Place) but I think it was in the late 1960s or very early 70s. They show two of the Bedford OWBs operated for many years in the Watlington and Henley area by House's Coaches of Watlington. I knew these buses well when I lived at Northend (near Turville Heath) between 1948 and 1950; I believe there was a third OWB (BBW291?), an OB bus (BUD279) and a couple of OB coaches (DBW534 and DUD810). I remember them acquiring a new Commer about that time with an EBW registration, but I can't remember the number!
I have added your website to my favourites list - I am sure we have a lot of information to exchange!!"
I look forward to further contributions from Brian, the two pictures above are really excellent.
Old timetables and maps by Chris Dunscombe.
A couple of months ago I acquired a few Oxford leaflets from the late 1980's, and one item of interest was the folded "Oxford Bus Map and Guide" dated August 1988. The cover picture is of a Citylink double-deck coach, and has "Welcome to Oxford" greetings in English, French, German, Italian and Spanish in the first fold. The reverse has adverts for Citylink 190/200; Airports X70; Heritage and River routes X90, 390/490, 290 (I also obtained a similarly vintaged leaflet for the 390/490 and a Greenline edition for the 290 service at the same time); Park and Ride 590/595 and the Ranger ticket, which appeared to extend as far as Kidlington, Eynsham, Millway Lane Cumnor, Culham, Berinsfield, Garsington, Wheatley Bridge Hotel & Shabbington at this time.
The rear cover has an advert for the Compass ticket. Although no specific boundaries are stated, this shows orbital routes to Reading, Maidenhead, High Wycombe (direct and via Thame), Aylesbury, Kidlington, Woodstock, Witney and Faringdon.
The main side has an inset map of the City centre and a map of the area from Kidlington to Kennington and Dean Court to Rissinghurst, with Bus routes outlined in Pink. Normal routes are numbered in Red, "Nipper" minibuses in Green, and Citylink services in Black. I was intrigued to note that at one point Citylink 190 had infrequent journeys to Kidlington! Although the Nipper Minibuses are now replaced by other (usually larger) vehicles, It is interesting to note the development of routes, with some remarkable similarities to the present operation. There is also the competition from Stagecoach/Thames Transit, and the passing of some routes to independents (such as Heyfordian's 17* group of Shoppers and the RH Transport 8/8A (formerly N424).
Bus Running Days as follows:
Sunday 25 June - Hemel Hempstead
Sunday 1 October – Amersham organised by Amersham & District Motorbus Society
Running Day in Aldershot with details from Andrew Dyer.
I wonder if you could put a piece in your "forthcoming events" section about all the excitement that will be in Aldershot (not often you see the words "excitement" and "Aldershot" in the same sentence!!) over the weekend of 3 & 4 June this year.
Stagecoach is organising an event jointly with the Aldershot & District Bus Interest Group to celebrate 100 years since the first bus service operated from Aldershot to Farnborough in June 1906. There will be a running day and on Sunday 4 June we will be holding an Open Day at our depot in Halimote Road, Aldershot. As with the Portsmouth event last year, we hope to attract local families as well as enthusiasts and all proceeds raised will go to local charities.
As Aldershot has such a strong history of Dennis operation, we are hoping to get as many different types of Dennis bus on site as we can. Do you have a contact at the Oxford Bus Museum who might be persuaded to bring a KFC Loline 2? Sadly, I don't think any of the Loline 1's or 3's that were on loan from A&D to COMS in 1969/70 have survived to enable them to make an appearance, although there will certainly be sister vehicles in the SOU xxx and AAA xxxC batches there.
Running Days as advised by Peter Cartwright, Running Day Organiser Amersham & District Motorbus Society
Sunday 25 June 2006
This date in mid-Summer is for the first Hemel Hempstead Running Day to be based on the Bus Station. Arriva the Shires and Essex have given permission for us to use the bus station that day but like Slough this is an operational bus station and we will not interfere with their operations which are anyway much reduced on Sundays.
This is the normal date for North Weald which will not take place this year and the NLTS have no plans for a replacement event that day.
Discussions have also taken place with Dacorum Borough Council, Herts County Council and the police who have all been most helpful. I have also spoken to the Market Superintendent and am able to book and pay for stall space on the day. For those who don't know Hemel, the covered market is situated behind the bus station - an excellent location.
The market will have a hot food stall that day and another stallholder sells confectionery, soft drinks, ice cream etc. Ample toilet facilities are at the bus station.
Peter Gomm and I visited Hemel on Fri 6 January and, with advice from the police, have identified an area nearby for display vehicles in Dacorum Way and vehicles on long breaks can park in Queensway (formerly Bury Road) between Leighton Buzzard Road and Marlow's, the railway station on one unused bay on Sundays and the bus station itself can be used for shorter breaks without disturbing its smooth operation. Health & Safety issues have to be borne in mind. A requirement of at least 10 double decks and 11 single decks are needed. This excludes any duplication which will be needed.
A number of rural and inter-urban routes have been chosen for operation - 302, 307 ,312.316. 317.317a,318,319 ,320,330, 337 ,347,706,708, 724. The 724 is for a feeder service to/from Watford from the North and then a 708 to/from Hemel. At the moment I have nothing from the South - any suggestions/offers? (THOSE IN BOLD HAVE TO BE SINGLE-DECK OPERATED).
Certain places such as Berkhamsted Station provide good interchanges with rtes 317/a and 312 connecting there and also in central Watford with the 302 and 347 connecting.
The biggest interchange of all, of course, is the bus station.
Again in Hemel a wide range of vehicles have been operated e.g. GS,RF, T, RB,RT,RMC, RML,SNB,SNC plus several others. Like Windsor, Central Area used to loan their vehicles for weekend and bank holiday duplication.
If anyone has blinds for any or part of these areas please let me know urgently.
Please respond as quickly as you can as I want to finalise timetables/duties etc asap.
I am paying a visit to Hemel this morning to see what it's like between 11.00 and 12.00
Sunday 1 October 2006 - the 18th Running Day at Amersham.
As route 724 is 40 years old this year, apart from the feeders, I want to schedule a service between Watford and High Wycombe via Amersham - the original route south of Watford. This will be 29 years to the day since MA Garage took over duties from HE - High Wycombe Garage which closed the previous day, 30 September 1977.
This year should see the brand new bus station at High Wycombe open by this date and this would be the ideal place to terminate. More on this Running Day in due course.
It is hoped to celebrate 40 years since RMLs took over route 363 Totteridge - Holtspur in February 1966. Weather permitting it is hoped to have RML/RMLs running over the route on Sunday 19 February. Likewise a month later to run over the full length of Route 347 Hemel - Uxbridge which received RMLs on 20 March 1966. Anyone else interested in joining us?
Please feel free to contact me by phone 01494 437750 or by e-mail - Peter_Cartwright@wycombe.gov.uk - or post at 54 Guinions Road, HIGH WYCOMBE, HP13 7NX.
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Visit the "OXFORD BUS PAGE" Archive 1998 - 2002
Visit the "OXFORD & CHILTERN BUS PAGE " Archives from October 2002 to date
These are three most interesting sites which I do recommend
Mike Penn's photo page with much from Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire as well as Buckinghamshire
Chris Lowe's Photo page - mainly North West UK
The Oxford Bus Museum
James Smith writes "I'm reopening my Bus Model store (its being hosted at www.arriva-shires.co.uk/shop for the time being) and as an opening offer I'd like to give your readers the opportunity to buy a couple of local models at a reduced price.. Anybody wishing to purchase these items should contact me directly by email (email@example.com) instead of through the store...Details Below:
CREATIVE MASTER UKBUS 1014 - DENNIS TRIDENT - OXFORD PARK & RIDE
Normal Selling Price £19.99 - Oxford Page Readers £13.99
CREATIVE MASTER UKBUS 2012 - DENNIS TRIDENT - STAGECOACH BROOKES BUS
Normal Selling Price £20.99 - Oxford Page Readers £14.99
A web site which has paintings of buses.
The latest handbook from BBF was
on sale at Cobham and was the ever popular Stagecoach edition now in its 13th
As in earlier editions it includes the 2006 new bus orders.
Bus Services in Buckinghamshire
Bus services in Oxfordshire
Where are the Chilterns?
Visit this informative site through the link below.
Visit the "OXFORD BUS PAGE" Archive 1998 - 2002
Visit the "OXFORD & CHILTERN BUS PAGE " Archives from October 2002