The page for enthusiasts in the Oxford Chilterns Area - News from you and news for you - pictures too  ~~~~   The page for enthusiasts in the Oxford Chilterns Area - News from you and news for you - pictures too  ~~~~   The page for enthusiasts in the Oxford Chilterns Area - News from you and news for you - pictures too  

Issue 248
Sunday 18th November
next update week ending 24th November 2007

Visit the "OXFORD & CHILTERN BUS PAGE " Archives from October 2002


News Archive Pages from the "Oxford Bus Page"
I regret that the server used to store the pictures for many of these pages is no longer available.
I hope to restore the pictures at some time in the future.


Please note that any comments made in this news page are those of the Editors' and in no way constitute 
any official points of view from the bus companies mentioned,  or indeed any other official body. 
As a news page we reserve the right to make valid comments as seen from an editorial point of view.

If you wish to be included on a mailing list where I will advise of any mid-week news please let me know

To see the pictures full size just click on the thumbnail

A note regarding photographs which show drivers faces.
Following one complaint from a bus driver in Oxford but considering the fact that the photographs are taken of the vehicle not any person,
I will blank out the face to avoid any discomfort to the individual concerned. If you are the person involved send me an email to have this action taken.
I am sure people will realise that to ask everyone in advance of publication, whose face may appear in a picture is wholly impractical in both time and practice.
I am sorry to have to mention such a matter but we now live in a world of human rights and political correctness which must be considered.


This past week has been a busy one as I worked Saturday through Tuesday on the 737 and then spent two days in Frankfurt which altogether proved quite tiring.

Contributions this past week to this edition have been excellent and I also spent some time on Saturday in Oxford taking photographs, this being the first time I had done so for several months. I took around 150 pictures which should provide a library source for some weeks to come. The weather turned out dull and as a result the light was not the best for taking moving vehicles. However I think the results were fairly acceptable.

Cycling again - why do they ignore the rules?

I was surprised to see cyclists still ignoring the "no cycling" rule in Queen Street and was minded of the news report about the cyclist who killed a pedestrian reported on the news on Friday. Whilst this was not in Oxford, it does serve to highlights the risks these people are taking. I do have to admit there were not so many as in the past but there are those who still do.

Imagine my surprise whilst taking my bus pictures I saw the cyclist in the picture above ride straight into the one way Magdalen Street from St Giles. Obviously the rules and signs were not for this man, he was following his own code. Pity any poor driver who might have collided with him, I am almost certain it would be that driver who got the blame.

On returning to Thornhill on the Park & Ride bus I noticed a cyclist come straight out of Long Wall towards the Magdalen Bridge, not stopping in spite of the red traffic light in his path. What a good job the OBC Trident driver was going slowly.

I apologise to those cyclists who do follow the highway code but one day there is going to be a day of reckoning. With peak shopping days approaching and the large number of shoppers this will bring into the city I think that maybe some BIG signs in several languages might be a help. Maybe even signs warning pedestrians about the danger of cyclists?

Goldline Stagecoach style from Adam Rideout, Marketing Mananger of Stagecoach in Warwickshire


Bus operator, Stagecoach in Warwickshire has just launched a new pilot scheme – something which has ever been seen in England before.

The new initiative has been named ‘Goldline’ and was launched by Stagecoach Group Chief Executive, Brian Souter, along with Stagecoach in Warwickshire’s Managing Director, Phil Medlicott and John Deegan, Strategic Director – Environment and Economy for Warwickshire County Council.

Many local dignitaries, Stagecoach representatives and interested locals braved the frosty morning to see the new look 66 service and experience what could be the future of bus travel.

During his speech, Brian Souter welcomed everyone to the event and thanked all the attendees and stakeholders for their time and commitment to creating a service which will be embraced by Leamington commuters.

He said that: “Many people are considering their carbon footprint. We don’t want to say to people “don’t use your car”, but to encourage them to think about using it sensibly. Use the car for your out of town shop, but use the bus to go into town. Goldline encourage people to make intelligent choices. I hope this will be a new product line and front-line staff will be very important to delivering this.”

The new look 66 service which runs between Warwick, Woodloes, Leamington, Whitnash and South Farm has had an investment of over £1 million pounds, and the new buses include leather seats, special uniforms for the drivers, metallic paint as well as a special driver charter which all drivers have to adhere to. All of these additional comforts are being introduced with no additional cost to passengers and no changes to the current timetable.

As well as the ‘Driver Charter’, Stagecoach has also introduced a ‘Customer Promise’ which states that they will provide buses to the highest standard, that information will be clear and up-to-date, that drivers will keep passengers informed of any delays and that if the service does not run on time than passengers will be given a refund.

During his speech, John Deegan said that one of the reasons Leamington had been chosen for the launch of this flagship scheme was the positive relationship between Warwickshire and Stagecoach, stating that ‘while he’s been in office the relationship has changed beyond recognition’

He concluded by saying that the new buses would provide: “a new experience entirely.”

Stagecoach in Warwickshire’s managing director Phil Medlicott said: “The new look 66, or Goldline as it is now known, is an exciting product to launch and something we are extremely proud to be piloting,”

Straight after the launch, the eleven brand new buses were put to work transporting passengers to their destinations and initial feedback has already been positive.

These pictures by Ben Morroll

Details of the special fleet of Solos are as follows:

47508    KX57KGA
47509    KX57KGE
47510    KX57KGF
47511    KX57KGG
47512    KX57KGJ
47513    KX57KGK
47514    KX57KGN
47515    KX57KGO
47516    KX57KGP
47517    KX57KGU
47518    KX57KFZ

Why do I read the Oxford & Chilterns Bus Page? - Thoughts from the past by Keith Shayshutt

I originate from Essex and currently live in Derbyshire yet I read the Bus Page every week. Why? 

Back in 1975, I was a management trainee and part time bus driver with Midland Red based at their Digbeth, Birmingham depot.

I remember passing my PSV test on a Friday, completing two crew operated duties on Saturday and Sunday and being told to report for my OMO training after my day in the office on Tuesday evening. I was trained on the X50, Birmingham to Oxford route that Tuesday night, where we met the Oxford -South Midland (O-SM) driver and bus at Tredington and changed over buses and I returned to Birmingham. The following evening I was on my own, such was the baptism of fire at Midland Red in those days and I operated this evening X50 Tredington changeover on many subsequent occasions. At that time Midland Red drivers would not drive an O-SM bus, so a Midland Red Leopard was on permanent loan but was of course changed over daily at Tredington. 

A short while later, I guess during 1978 (can any reader provide the exact date please?) I heard that the X50 was to be revised and that the two journeys a day were going to be increased to four and that Midland Red and O-SM would work through end to end but still sharing the service 50/50. Being keen to secure one of these new duties I learnt the route myself through to Oxford one Saturday morning off duty on the old timetable, some weeks before the new through timetable was introduced. I then went to see the Duty Allocator at Digbeth and asked for one of the new X50 duties saying that I already knew the way. This helped of course and I was duly allocated the evening X50 duty every Sunday night. It departed from Birmingham at 1640, arrived in Oxford at around 1930. It then did a short 20 on hire to O-SM to Woodstock and back and finally departed Oxford at 2130 for Birmingham arriving at 2400. The usual Midland Red vehicle was a Leopard DP whilst O-SM supplied a VR from Chipping Norton outstation, usually an AUD-R. 

I covered this duty for many years and became very familiar with the Oxford scene on my layover in the City. One Sunday evening during the summer I remember having a standing load on my Leopard at Chipping Norton heading for Oxford. I knew that I would have a lot more customers waiting at Woodstock so I took it upon myself to pull in to the O-SM Chipping Norton depot and swap the Leopard for a VR. Of course there was no one there to ask on a Sunday evening! I remember taking a JWL-N VR from the front of the depot and asking all of my passengers to change buses. Never having driven a VR before we made slower than usual progress to Woodstock where I was able to clear the queue. I then operated the 'on-hire' to OS-M 20 to Woodstock and back with a 'correct' bus and destination display. Finally on the 2130 return to Birmingham we called in at Chipping Norton depot to collect the Leopard for the onward journey to Birmingham. Such initiative was usually frowned upon in those days so I kept quiet about it! 

At the conclusion of my management training at Midland Red it was usual for trainees to be sent to another NBC company for three weeks comparative training before being posted for a permanent position. I was sent to Oxford-South Midland and spent three very enjoyable weeks there in December 1976. It seemed somehow that I already knew Oxford from my regular Sunday evening visits. It was a very different company to Midland Red and I learned a lot. Those memories remain with me to today and that is why I still very much enjoy reading the Bus Page every week. 

During that December 1976 period I took a number of photographs and a small selection follows.

Pictures by Keith Shayshutt 

New Mercedes 19 seater enters service with easybus

The trade press mentioned that a batch of Mercedes minibuses would replace the current fleet of fords and the first one of the new buses has very recently entered service between Stansted and London.

Numbered 0300 in the Arriva fleet at Luton.

Route Branding - comments on this subject by Marcus Lapthorn 

The bus industry seems to be obsessed by route branding and I query why? They are not doing this to help the customers as operators frequently place route branded buses onto other routes. IF customers ever took any notice of branding (which they don't as they cannot trust it), then they would be frequently ending up in the wrong parts of the country! For example route 100 branded Tridents on the 20 route; a route 5 branded bus on the 6 and so it goes on and on. Operators justify this by saying that, "well it is better to provide any bus rather than no bus". When buses are initially route branded they frequently only brand the exact number of buses for the route. If the operator has sufficient non branded buses that can cover for servicing, repainting, accident damage etc etc then maybe confusion is avoided. However where too many buses are branded for a variety of routes, then the number of unbranded spare buses may be insufficient to cover all of the requirements for servicing etc etc. 

Route branding is clearly good for the likes of the creative design companies who specialise in this work but is actually a complete waste of money. The industry would be better spending more money and giving attention to WHERE the bus is actually going to! In Oxford the operators are very good at providing destination blinds that work but Arriva and many other companies east of Oxford are especially bad at this area of their work. Scraps of paper (if we are lucky) in the windscreen may say where the bus is going to but often all one gets is a route number. IF one knows the route numbers that may be OK but not if  one is unfamiliar with the route numbers. 

The industry managers should remind themselves every day that they would not have a job if there were no customers left travelling by bus. So bus industry please drop the route branding and invest instead in good route destination systems and you will save money!

I look forward to response from readers and note that Stagecoach in Oxford have just applied revised branding to the buses used on route 1 to Blackbird Leys.

Following on from the recent discourse on route 366 an appropriate photo to illustrate the comments made by Marcus is shown below.

Martin Isles visits Marlow last Wednesday morning

An interesting morning in Marlow on Wednesday.

A picture of Red Rose FJ06URR having worked into Marlow on the 330 from Henley prepares to journey to Wycombe to start the 275 to Oxford.  This confirms that FJ06URS was the Caetano Dart that perished in the recent arson attack.

P264NRH, one of a pair of Plaxton Pointer Dart SLFs acquired from Scarborough & District as fleet replacements - the other is P263NRH. (The livery is strangely similar to OBC's 817 - see below. Ed.)

An ex Stagecoach B10M/Alexander PS has also been acquired as replacement for the un-burnt but expired ex Eastbourne Wadham Stringer Dennis Javelin, J124FUF.

L922LJO, one of the ex Motts Yellow Bus Volvo B6/NCME on a Marlow short of the 800, making a change from the Olympian/NCME usually used.

9920MT a new addition to the current Motts fleet, a Neoplan (Cityliner?) thought to be on a feeder service from Marlow.  It is escorted by the B9M/Van Hool which was on a different job at teh time and the two just happened to be together in West Street,

Thanks to Martin for those interesting pictures and comments.

Bournemouth and a Versa by Carl Berry

Bournemouth 10th November 2007 and a brave time of year to launch an improved service to Bournemouth airport! (Without Bournemouth has a big Christmas market/ski trade I' not aware of).

(I saw one of these Versa's on delivery when I took a Neoplan up to Anston a week or so ago. Ed.)

Picture by Carl Berry

Your Editor visits Frankfurt

Last Wednesday and Thursday your erstwhile Editor visited Frankfurt reviving memories of a year spent working there in 2004-5. I was of course interested to see what change had taken place and not surprisingly the flights by Lufthansa from and to Heathrow had changed little. The outbound flight was by Airbus A321-200 and the return by Airbus A300-600. What had changed was the security levels at both Heathrow and Frankfurt. I was a good boy and had my little plastic bag at the ready containing my toothpaste, shaving cream etc all within the statutory limits of quantity. The flights seemed to be carrying less passengers than I remember but I was pleased to enjoy business class out and back.

I parked in the long term car park near the British Airways maintenance base and found that the Park & Ride buses were still those Scania/Wrights delivered in 1999. They are still presentable but the livery does look very dowdy by modern standards. What did catch me by surprise was that at long last, doubtless for security reasons, the road across the base has been closed and one now has to go round the back. Also the famous BEA maintenance hangers are being demolished. Also Concord has disappeared from its resting place by runway 23.

The weather was great and I thought the Virgin coach below had a modified livery to that which I remembered?

On arrival in Frankfurt I needed to get into the city and chose the ICE train from the airport to the main station. The German DB ICE trains are superb, especially the newer ICE 3 versions and it seemed somehow special to be joining a train running from Wiesbaden to Dresden. I joined at the airport where departure was some five minutes late at 13:06 and the train was scheduled to arrive at Dresden at 18:01. Trains in Germany are normally very punctual but they are haing a few industrial problems as I was to find out on my return the next day.

As one can see in the picture the 13:19 departure time had been missed.

The following morning I had to return to the airport and as I was staying in the east of the city I chose the tram for the journey from my hotel to the station. I saw on the news that the train workers were on strike but decided to take pot luck as I had plenty of time to get to the airport. I had to take one tram from near my hotel to Ostendstraße where I changed from a number 14 to a number 11 for the second part of my ride to the Hauptbanhof.

I was warned that the S bahn was not operating but would have chosen the tram anyway.

On arrival at the Hauptbanhof I could see striking workers outside the building and the inevitable TV crews.

The trams are very efficient with a recorded announcement for each stop. Details of connecting services are also given.

I had expected some problems with the ICE services but whilst the train I took was some 45 minutes late, the trains were running. I joined the delayed ICE 820, operating from München to Essen and enjoyed another ICE3 run.

On arrival at the airport I took time out to catch up with the bus scene and was greeted by the sight of an Arriva liveried Citaro. Local company Sipple has joined the Arriva family and since I left Frankfurt in February 2005 the Arriva livery has become part of the local scene. The buses operate both airside and landside and I saw articulated Citaros airside in the Arriva livery.

Other operators serve the airport and I am always surprised to see four figure route numbers.

In both directions my flights used apron parking and so a bus journey ensued. The photo below shows the type of Mercedes artics used by Fraport, the airport authority. however they also have new Citaros and M A N s.

Arrival back in London was from the west on 09L which passes over Windsor Castle and for once I was able to get a rather nice picture of the castle.

I think there is a mini bus by the train station !

From Simon Oliver

I spent a couple of hours in Oxford last Saturday and again on Friday evening taking a few pictures.

The pictures can be seen on my web site noted below. 

From Glenn Knight 

I have attached some photos of Arriva 3488 W488YGS with its new LED Blind,

Arriva 3147 N697EUR on 24s,

G284UMJ in Great Brickhill on service 152 Red Kite Services 08/11/2007.

Edward Neal writes to advise "Redline Buses of Aylesbury have a new website for your interest.

Centrebus 448 - R248XDA with the new respray on 50s in Dunstable 13/11/2007

and finally Centrebus 210 M210EGF on 231s in Dunstable 14/11/2007,

A big thank you to glenn for his continuing weekly contributions.

That X15 again

Edward Neal writes "The attached is from the Midland Section Timetable of the Eastern National Omnibus Co. dated 16th March, 1952 and may have some relevance to the "X15" debate ??"

Mike Penn responds to a question I raised about the 521 which seems to be an express 321 around Harpenden 

The 521 route is a limited stop variation of the 321.  There are two early morning journeys from Garston garage - 05:27 (06:40 Saturdays) and 06:00 (school days), 06:30 (non-school days), 07:05 Saturdays - the second journey on Monday to Friday is to Luton Airport, the remainder to Luton bus station.  There is also one return journey - 18:40 on Mondays to Fridays from Luton Airport and 19:10 on Saturdays from Luton bus station.  I don't have any photos! 

The 321 does have quite an interesting history, I believe, though I don't have all the details to hand at the moment.  It is the only route in Luton retaining its old London Transport number and the only one of any origin that has retained its number for any length of time.  In fact I used to live near Uxbridge and remember seeing RTs on the route.  It ran in two overlapping sections then - Uxbridge to Harpenden and Maple Cross to Luton although I seem to remember that there were through journeys at times.  Even earlier (up to the late 1950s) the Uxbridge to Harpenden section was numbered 351.  In later years the evening and Sunday operation has been a Hertfordshire County Council tendered service, with Seamarks running it from about 1988 and subsequently Capital Citybus although now it is in the hands of Arriva The Shires. 

If you are interested I am currently working on a piece about the X66 route and its predecessors running from Luton/Dunstable to Bletchley/Milton Keynes.  The number 66 has been in use for this route since 1931 (though not continuously). 

The Centrebus Darts you mentioned are W569 XRO, which has the Hatfield Galleria advert on the nearside and FM 52 GFA which has a Virgin Media advert on the nearside only.  The latter was used initially by Centrebus at Leicester, then transferred to Luton where it was used by Lutonian for a short time and then sent to St Albans.  The photo of W569 XRO was taken at the Cobham Gathering in April this year and that of FM 52 GFA was taken in St Albans, also in April.

Historical picture of Bicester depot from John Bristow

Last week Keith Shayshutt sent a recent picture of Bicester depot and so this week I can publish a picture from John Bristow of the depot in its heyday.

wrote "A rare visit to Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire yesterday gave me time to explore Fingest and Lane End. I see what you mean about the mound in front of the house at Fingest which replaced the

And they're off - the 1335 from Magdalen St!

Changes to service in East Oxfordshire from 9th December

Follow the link below to get the full picture.!!/delta/base64xml/L0lJSk03dWlDU1lBIS9JTGpBQU15QUJFUkVSRUlrLzRGR2dkWW5LSjBGUm9YZnJDRUEhLzdfTV8zN0wvMjQ!?WCM_PORTLET=PC_7_M_37L_WCM&WCM_GLOBAL_CONTEXT= 

I look forward to pictures of the new operators in action at the earliest possible date.

Bus Models

James Smith writes "I can let your readers know that I have a few of the Creative Master, UKBUS 2015 Oxford Bus Plaxton President model left at a reduced price." 

It's been reduced to £20.50

I'm hoping to offer your readers a permanent discount in the very near future.
- Low cost Bus models

A photo disc for your collection

This week I can bring details of a really super new photo disc from Vics cliix. The disc contains pictures taken in the early 1970s by Vic Zealey and copies can be obtained through Malcolm Hyland's web site

Here are some samples of the 158 pictures on this disc.

The quality is good and they are all at high resolution.

Malcolm Crowe - Sunday 18th November 2007

Visit the "OXFORD & CHILTERN BUS PAGE " Archives from October 2002 to date

News of the local companies – 18th November 2007

Praise for Arriva

Matt Robinson writes "I had a pleasant trip to Oxford on Saturday with some friends. A pretty quiet day bus wise with nothing seemingly out of the ordinary (apart from 5145 and 5117 on the 280).
I would like to complement Arriva on the journey back, when the A418 between Tiddington and Thame was closed. I had become separated from some of my friends who were on the bus ahead of me which worked a double-run into Tiddington to drop off, turned around outside The Fox and then diverted to Thame via the A40 and A329. Where safe to do so the Arriva drivers were briefing each other as the buses passed (our driver did so in Wheatley and Haddenham). On what was a very busy journey (and with the extra diversions) the drivers of both 5156 and 5159 did an excellent job of catching up time and helping us meet our connection to Luton."

The Olympians mentioned by Matt, seen at Carfax last Saturday.

A week ago Sunday I was working a 737 duty at Stansted and was surprised to see some Ware based buses working the easybus services from Stansted to London. This coincided with the use of the new Mercedes bus which had just arrived. I am not totally sure if the two buses pictured below were being used in service or as a very costly way to provide staff transport but they both had EB2 labels in the windows.

Solo 2463 is seen on layover with Vario 2376 just arriving.

The new Versas at Wycombe seem to be used on the 74 from time to time. This was a week ago early Saturday morning.

Seen in Stokenchurch on Friday 9th November, I think this Volvo 3863 had just come off a school run from Watlington but the destination screen was off.
If so this was normally a double deck working. The Line 40 was being worked by the Solos on that day.


I was passing through Hemel last Sunday morning and caught up with this immaculate Dart in the bus station.

I asked if anyone had pictures of two Centrebus Darts with near side advertising and Mike Penn came up with the goodies.

Seen on the S7, Dart MPD 352 shows off its Virgin super side.

On its regular route, long Dart 569 has a colourful advert for The Galleria shopping mall at Hatfield.

City Sightseeing - Oxford

Whilst in Oxford last Saturday, I took the opportunity to take a short ride on one of the new Volvo open toppers. Trade was quite brisk and the bus gave a very smooth ride indeed. They are very colourful inside and each passenger is issued with a headphone set to listen to the multi lingual commentary. There is also - to quote CSS a "live guide". This amuses me somewhat as one would hardly expect to find a dead one. (Sorry CSS and Richard)

Volvo nr 55 passes Carfax Tower last Saturday.

Excel Passenger Transport - Stansted

This ex London Olympian is now hard at work with Excel at Stansted. For quite a while it lacked fleet livery.

Bruces Coaches, who operate the NEx 539 service Bournemouth-Aberdeen have just received two Volvo B12B - Levante coaches for this service.
One is seen in the picture above by Gavin Francis.

Seen last Saturday coming off St Giles is Go Ahead's K3 VOY on the 304 Weymouth service.

Finally a very few coaches
have received this Footprints branding as seen another Volvo-Levante from Veoila at Stansted on the 767.

As mentioned last Saturday saw a first visit purely for photographs for many months now. I hoped to catch any unusual workings from the various companies and I was not disappointed with Oxford Bus.

Scania Coach nr 4 looks very smart as its nears the end of its journey from London. Volvo 641 is seen heading out of town.

The next coach I caught up with was fairly new Volvo nr 86 heading in from Heathrow.
Am I correct when I think the slogan "The journey begins" is only shown on outward journeys?

Unusual workings started with 817 on 35 road. Sadly it was rather dirty but the weather had not been good with rain not sun that morning.
The newer style of livery helps to make buses look cleaner than the old cream based livery.

The next unusual working was on the same road with Citaro 836 seen heading into town along St Aldates.

Finally having seen a green Citaro heading out of service along High St, I caught up with 909 on the 500, a most unusual working.
I guess the green Citaro had a problem and 909 was what was available in the depot.

I like the wheel trims in use on Dart 408. These are the same style but not size as those used on the new Volvo coaches.
It does look rather smart don't you agree?

Two other imported Tridents were at work on 35 road and are seen in the town last Saturday morning. 902 and 905 pause in an otherwise busy day.

This time two home grown versions pass each other in High Street both on 400 road. I had just rode in on 115 seen heading for Seacourt.

Red liveried Trident 105 waits time for the football crowds at Oxford train station.

RH Transport Services

Some interest this week as the company has had some hired in vehicles working.

Looking very smart indeed, this Vario has had a full repaint.

A nice surprise is that buses returning from overhaul on route 1 are receiving new super rear branding which makes the Cowley Road brighter. Three buses, 22942, 22943 and 22944 have been seen and are pictured below.


A picture of 22944 is seen from the front. The rear shot of 22943 was taken by Gavin Francis. There has been a change in the shade of orange used.

Glenn Knight sent this picture of 16228 working at Biggleswade. Quite a nice variation.

Oxford's 16519, nominally out stationed at Harwell is seen on a 32 working last Saturday. These routes are destined for change from 9th December - see above in the Editorial.

Another Harwell out station bus, 20228 working the 33 to Wantage last Saturday.

Trident 18395 departs from its Randolph Hotel stop in the city, on its way to Bicester last Saturday.

South West Trains liveried Olympians are finding use of schools work. Picture by Les Smith - SC South.

Saturday is a great day for the Tube with many services running full.
I witnessed three Tubes in quick succession at Thornhill, all with near full loads en route to London.
50109 above is seen arriving from London.

Spot two differences on this Tube, 50118 at Thornhill on Saturday afternoon.

Harvey Cullimore sent this evocative night shot of three Tubes on break at Oxpens last week.

The Jonckheere Monacos are turning up all over the place. Matthew writes "Firstly let me say what an excellent site you have, I have been a regular reader for the past couple of years and every update is of
excellent interest

Secondly, you might be interested to know, former Stagecoach Jonckheere Monaco 50049 has now turned up here in Northern Ireland with Eamonn Rooney coach hire and has been re-registered as MJZ8376, it has gained fleet names for its owner but still remains in Stagecoach swoops minus the red one.

A photo of 50049 is in the link below,

I've also just heard another former Stagecoach Jonckheere Monaco has turned up here in Northern Ireland with another private operator, details of it are very sketchy at the minute, all I know is its also been re-registered as NJZ1386, I will ask around about it and try and find out who owns it now and if I can track down its former Stagecoach fleet number."

Tappins are still using this Tiger/Derwent on the Tesco service. Picture by Richard Sharman.

TT 154, the Pink Lady as was, waits time on an X39 service from Oxford to Reading last Saturday.

A reader writes to note "The Thames Travel Megane is operating the free taxi shuttle to and from Cross Country Caravans whilst buses are diverted away from Shillingford Bridge due to the road closure in operation." (see picture on last week's page nr 247.)

Interest lies in the recent change to using fleet numbers. You can see all the details at the following link :

M Volvo coach, fleet number W44 seen in  this picture from Michael Wootton.

Trevor Wilson writes "Earlier this year you reported on a convoy of Wasps supporters coaches going to the Ricoh Arena Coventry.  Therefore in this week BFP you will have noticed Wasps (2007 European Champions) are playing Munster (2006 European Champions) in the Heineken European Cup round 1 at the Ricoh Arena on Saturday 10th November (tomorrow) kick off 17.30.  So another coach convoy along the M40 past Stokenchurch leaving Hillbottom Road High Wycombe around 12.00-12.30.  See also

We went to the match on a Motts coach.  Pickup points were Hillbottom Road and BCUC.  Fares - free for season ticket holders and £10 for other match ticket holders.  Coaches were provided by Motts, Woottons and others (not sure who but I saw at least one from Risboro coaches). The rumour was 35 coaches.

Score - Wasps 24 Munster 23.  Wasps were behind by 10 points twice and Munster lead for nearly all the match.

If you have a digital camera and wish to submit photos for this page please send them to the me at

I Stansted Transit had this Optare Tempo demonstrator on loan last week. I did not see it in service.


If you have any pictures or historical memories and wish to submit them for this page please send them to the me at


Coming events, models and useful links

PSV Circle publishes latest issue of the fleet list for Berkshire and Oxfordshire

Ken MacKenzie writes to note that the new PSV Circle fleet list for Berkshire/Oxfordshire (G432) is now available.

Those readers wishing to buy a copy should write to: PSV Circle, 59 Palmer Avenue, Cheam SM3 8EF - Cost id £7.00 plus 50p P & P and it will also be available at the PSV Circle sales stand at Showbus 2007.

This will be a most useful reference for all those interested in the local scene.

Editors review - I have now had chance to review this book and it is indeed very useful, giving details of all known fleets in Berks and Oxon. Whilst some information is not totally up to date it allows the readers to have a comprehensive view of the local fleets and up dates can be gained by joining the PSV Circle. At £7.00 this represents value for money as it also includes a number of good photographs.


A new casting with a local flavour has been released by Britbus as a picture from Mark Lyons shows. It is a nice model but as Mark says, a little pricey at £33.

Model News of an Oxford bus

Guy writes to send a picture of the latest offering on the model front related to Oxford.


A photo disc for your collection

This week I can bring details of a really super new photo disc from Vics cliix. The disc contains pictures taken in the early 1970s by Vic Zealey and copies can be obtained through Malcolm Hyland's web site

Here are some samples of the 158 pictures on this disc.

The quality is good and they are all at high resolution.

Oxford Bus 125 commemorative book

In last week's issue I mentioned that Oxford Bus were publishing a book to commemorate the 125 years of public transport in Oxford. Thanks to Phil Ashworth I have had a review copy and hereunder give my thoughts on this book.

The book is well presented and includes a number of historical pictures of interest including some I had not seen before. The modern pictures have received a nice treatment reflecting the modern fleet against a background of typical Oxford architecture. The Botley Road rail bridge gets a mention and a picture of an AEC pre war decker which has done battle with said bridge and come off worse from its encounter is included.

The book, whilst rather small to reflect the 125 years in detail is nevertheless a must for all who love Oxford, historians and enthusiasts alike.

Copies of the book can be bought from the Oxford Bus Company, Cowley House, Watlington Rd, Oxford OX4 6GA. The cost is £5.95 including postage. Cheques should be made payable to "Oxford Bus Company", it is also available in person from the Oxford Bus Museum during normal opening hours. 

New DVD by Robin Clare -

Robin sent me a copy of his latest DVD to review. "Today's buses - Oxfordshire" is the compelling title which includes Henley, Wallingford and Didcot before the viewer is taken onto Wantage, Witney, Banbury and finally Bicester. Each of these locations is covered in2 to 5 minutes and each shows the current selection of buses and coaches to be found. Finally over 37 minutes is devoted to Oxford with filming in a variety of locations in the city.

On another subject the road sense and behaviour of cyclists in Oxford has to be seen to be believed!!!!

The quality of the DVD is excellent and one can really see clearly the details of each vehicle, something which older video always seemed unable to do. All the latest developments are shown in this September 2007 DVD, including workings from Broad Street during the St Giles Fair weekend.

The DVD provides a unique record of events in Oxfordshire during this period and at £10 is not a very large outlay.

Robin Clare Transport Video
74 Polruan Place, Fishermead,
Milton Keynes MK6 2EA

The full details of DVDs available from Robin Clare may be found at his web site :-

Citaro models

Dave Rogers sent the following press release.


Mercedes-Benz Citaro - ukbus 5004 Arriva Manchester  -  ukbus 5007 Oxford Bus


Creative Master Northcord Limited is proud to release two brand new liveries on its well known Mercedes-Benz Citaro casting. Both models have received significant, yet different, modifications to the tooling in order to represent, as close to 100% accuracy as possible, the real buses on the roads. 

ukbus 5004 represents fleet number Arriva North West’s 2851 (CX55 EAA). This Mercedes Citaro is one of three such vehicles with dedicated route branding for service 700 and with the destination set to Manchester. The model features a redesigned interior layout that includes the reduced seating capacity and luggage racks. 

Starting on 29th October 2005, Arriva North West’s service 700 runs from Manchester’s Piccadilly Railway Station to Liverpool’s John Lennon Airport. For the service, 3 Mercedes-Benz Citaro buses were purchased and numbered 2851-3. They were painted in the same style and colours as the Scania OmniCity buses that already operated between John Lennon and Liverpool city centre. 

ukbus 5007 represents fleet number 830 (X13 OXF) of Oxford Bus Company. 830 entered service in December 2003, to upgrade the X3 & X13 Oxford – Abingdon services. The bus was painted in a new and distinctive livery designed by Best Impressions. 

ukbus 5007 features the smooth, curved windscreen with the destination display set behind the windscreen glass rather than the protruding destination found on the Park & Ride Citaros in the fleet. This feature is one of the standard specifications on other Citaros that the Go-Ahead Group has purchased. 

Mercedes-Benz Citaro ukbus 5004 and 5007 models are each a one-piece casting whose clean lines accentuate the square-mounted, double-glazed windows and the livery application on which all logos and lettering are clearly legible. Another main feature on both models is the extensive portrayal of handrails. The headlight / indicator units at the front and indicator / tail light units at the rear are made of individual components to look more realistic.


The brand new single-door Mercedes-Benz Citaro bus models will be distributed by John Ayrey Die-Casts Limited (UK), Porte Publishing Company (Japan) and Concorde Hobby Shop (HK) respectively. The ukbus 5004 and 5007 models are limited to 1700 pieces worldwide respectively. 


Would readers who respond to the above please quote my site when doing so.

If you wish to be included on a mailing list where I will advise of any mid week news & when each News Page is posted
please let me know on

Visit the "OXFORD BUS PAGE" Archive 1998 - 2002

Visit the "OXFORD & CHILTERN BUS PAGE " Archives from October 2002 to date


These are nine most interesting sites which I do recommend

Bus Zone Logo (2421 bytes)

Mike Penn's photo page with much from Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire as well as Buckinghamshire

Chris Lowe's Photo page - mainly North West UK

John Marsh's pictures with a difference

The Oxford Bus Museum

Ray Jackson Art

A web site which has paintings of buses.
Nice present for a Christmas or Birthday wish list !!


Stagecoach Handbook for 2006
from British Bus Publishing

Arriva Handbook for 2006-2007
from British Bus Publishing

The latest handbooks are now on sale, the ever
popular Stagecoach edition now in its 13th year.


Bus Services in Buckinghamshire

Bus services in Oxfordshire

Bus services in Hertfordshire

Hertfordshire Logo/link

Where are the Chilterns?

Visit this informative site through the link below.

back to home page
Map showing the Chilterns Hills beginning in Oxfordshire in the Thames Valley and stretching north-east through Buckinghamshire and Bedfordshire to Hitchin in Hertfordshire. The highest points are over 250m. There are various water courses running from the Chilterns to the South East.

Visit the "OXFORD BUS PAGE" Archive 1998 - 2002

Visit the "OXFORD & CHILTERN BUS PAGE " Archives from October 2002