Spottings & Jottings nr. 90 - 23rd November 2015

Visit the "OXFORD & CHILTERN BUS PAGE " Current archives from October 2002

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Well, here we are with the first page since my semi-retirement. It has been a pleasant first weeks so far but as ever my wife has found much for me to do!!

Much has been happening this month with the new Stagecoach E200 MMCs entering service in Banbury, a new batch of Scania Caetano coaches entering service on a new Airport service from London to Stansted (airportbus express), as well as another new service by Metroline from Kings Cross to Stansted (Stansted Citylink), this time using Mercedes Benz Tourismo coaches recorded as being with Braddell of Perivale ???

Airportbus Express BX65WBE on route A21 near Victoria on 16th November by Gavin Francis.

The full batch of 12 coaches is listed below.

BX65WBE  Sca K3??EB4 YS2K4X20001894141  Caetano   C??FLt  10/2015  Airportbus Express,Stansted 
BX65WBF  Sca K3??EB4 YS2K4X20001894221  Caetano   C??FLt  10/2015  Airportbus Express,Stansted 
BX65WBG  Sca K3??EB4 YS2K4X20001894253  Caetano  C??FLt  10/2015  Airportbus Express,Stansted 
BX65WBJ  Sca K3??EB4 YS2K4X20001894268  Caetano C??FLt  10/2015  Airportbus Express,Stansted 
BX65WBK  Sca K3??EB4 YS2K4X20001894257  Caetano  C??FLt  10/2015  Airportbus Express,Stansted 
BX65WBL  Sca K3??EB4 YS2K4X20001894249  Caetano  C??FLt  10/2015  Airportbus Express,Stansted 
BX65WBM  Sca K3??EB4 YS2K4X20001894245  Caetano  C??FLt  10/2015  Airportbus Express,Stansted 
BX65WBN  Sca K3??EB4 YS2K4X20001894233    Caetano   C??FLt  10/2015  Airportbus Express,Stansted 
BX65WBO  Sca K3??EB4 YS2K4X20001894345    Caetano   C??FLt  10/2015  Airportbus Express,Stansted 
BX65WBP  Sca K3??EB4 YS2K4X20001894351  Caetano C??FLt  10/2015  Airportbus Express,Stansted 
BX65WBT  Sca K3??EB4 YS2K4X20001894356  Caetano C??FLt  10/2015  Airportbus Express,Stansted 
BX65WBU  Sca K3??EB4 YS2K4X20001894343  Caetano  C??FLt  10/2015  Airportbus Express,Stansted 

Hired coaches were used to start this service 767 including for ex Oxford coaches latterly with Hamilton Gray.
The operation is by Comfort DelGro/Metroline.

ComfortDelGro Corporation is a multi-national land transport company listed on the Singapore Exchange operating 46,010 vehicles in seven countries.

Stanssted Citylink Irish Van Hool 142-G-6 at Kings Cross on November 3rd by Gavin Francis.

STN Citylink HIG5338 at Kings Cross on November 3rd by Gavin Francis.

Howards are using their YJ08EAC at Kings Cross on November 3rd by Gavin Francis.

The new coaches now entering service are listed below. They will be based at Perivale.

BG65VXA  MB Tourismo WEB63241523000553  MB   C51FL  11/2015   
BG65VXB  MB Tourismo WEB63241523000554  MB   C51FL  11/2015   
BG65VXC  MB Tourismo WEB63241523000555  MB   C51FL  11/2015   
BG65VXD  MB Tourismo WEB63241523000556  MB   C51FL  10/2015   
BG65VXE  MB Tourismo WEB63241523000557  MB   C51FL  11/2015   
BG65VXF  MB Tourismo WEB63241523000558  MB   C51FL  11/2015   
BG65VXH  MB Tourismo WEB63241523000559  MB   C51FL  11/2015   
BG65VXJ  MB Tourismo WEB63241523000560  MB   C51FL  11/2015   
BG65VXK  MB Tourismo WEB63241523000561  MB   C51FL  11/2015   
BG65VXL  MB Tourismo WEB63241523000562  MB   C51FL  11/2015   

We now have four operators on the London-Stansted service. One wonders how so many can survive? However it should be noted that Terravision no longer go direct to the airport but terminate in a car park wioth shuttle buses for the final leg of the journey.

Metroline VL3 working Terravision near Shepherds Bush on 11th November by Gavin Francis.
Rather surprising in view of the foregoing!

Oxford Bus have turned out another Scania-E400 in blue 2 road livery which looks quite nice with the final branding applied.

"bus in & chill" an interesting and initially obscure message but quite nice when the full import gets home!!
224, the second bus in this livery shows of its new branding in Magdalen Street East on November 20th taken by Gavin Francis.

The continuing saga of road works around the city of  Oxford seems never ending and it only takes one broken down vehicle in and around the city to cause even more delays and frustration. Only recently it was taking over 30 minutes for a bus or coach to get from St Aldates to George Street. I wonder if the planners have occasion to travel by public transport to see the results of their handiwork? I hear pain for gain but this is not helping public transport to be appreciated in my personal opinion.

On the matter of new services Oxford Bus recast it's Water Eaton 500 service renaming the destination "Oxford Parkway" and introducing E400’s 251-254 on the service which runs from Oxford Train Station to the new Water Eaton Station for the Parkway-Marylebone service which started on Sunday 25th October. These once intended buses for Go South Coast fit in very well with the Oxford Park & Ride scene adding a little variety. Graham Low sent a nice picture of the first day of service using E400 254.

The Parkway terminus on 6th November by Gavin Francis.

254 on the first day of the revised 500 service, 25th October caught on camera by Graham Low.

Dave Stewart writes "The Marylebone – Oxford Parkway rail service started on Sunday 25th with a half-hourly service.  Monday 26th was only the ‘official launch day which is rather different.  The 500 P&R also ran on Sunday, I presume that was its first Sunday (it has been only M=S up to now)?" 

Bus travel at risk

Several transport groups have warned that ‘everyday transport’, including bus travel, is at risk. In a letter to the Transport Secretary, Patrick McLoughlin, the organisations note that his department’s unprotected budget faces a cut of 25% to 40% in the Chancellor’s spending review. Since major investment programmes for roads and railways are ring-fenced, they believe this means cuts are expected to fall disproportionately on local transport. The letter warns that as a result local bus services will see further reductions in services and increases in fares.

Oxfordshire Bus Enthusiasts Society 

The Oxfordshire Bus Enthusiasts Society was formed in June 2010 and aims to provide an informal monthly social meeting in  Oxford for those with an interest in buses. Meetings are normally held on the 3rd Tuesday of each month and normally take the form of a picture  show with local and guest speakers.  A small charge is made to cover the cost of hiring the function room and this is usually around £1 for members per meeting depending on numbers.  For non-members a charge of £3 per head is made.


Check this link for future events:


When readers take copies of pictures from the OCBP site 


Some of the contributors to this site have noticed that their pictures are appearing on e-bay sites selling such things.


Needless to say this is a theft of copyright and one which I deplore!


I would not wish to have to watermark photographs, thereby making them unsalable as such but if this practice continues I shall be left with no alternative. I am sure this would detract from the pleasure so many of you get from the OCBP.


May I please ask readers to do two things?


1/ If you see any photos on sale please let me know and where they are appearing.


2/ If you are someone who has copied and sold photos please desist as this is theft and I will have to take legal action against anyone found doing so.


The site is free to all readers and I pay a price to publish the pages which is not passed on.


Please respect those freedoms and I hope I may not have to mention this matter again.


There is much more news below and many pictures taken by contributors and myself. I hope you all enjoy this issue.

Malcolm Crowe - Editor - OCBP - 23rd November 2015



Observations and pictures

Bernard Lewendon, whom I had asked if he was still living abroad, writes "Yes, I do still live in Philippines but I came to England on a visit during the summer. I arrived in time for the "Reading Event" and stayed until after Showbus. Also it was getting too cold for me by then!

I am sorry that I did not meet you at Showbus. I did not know until after I had left that you were here. It was a chaotic day and I left by 2 pm.

I am attaching a few pictures that may be of interest."

Two are buses in the landscape. Queen Victoria Road and from a library window, both in Wycombe.
The Carousel bu in both pictures, taken on June 1st 2015, is 424.

Also a bit late but Oxford 48, now returned to NEx Operations following the delivery of coach 53.
 Nr 43, PF61OXF Scania / Plaxton Panther was a substitute on the 737 one day in August.

"Many thanks for S&J 89 and all the previous editions. Always eagerly looked forward to!"



Graham Low writes "I attach a view of Stagecoach London E200MMC in Romford on TFL route 499. Certainly better than the former E200 - smoother and less rattles!" 

SC London 36607 on the 499 in Romford on 14th October by Graham Low.

Gavin Francis writes with a number of interesting vehicle shots taken over the past few month. 


First, we have  some delightful pictures taken by Gavin Francis at this year's Showbus at Woburn Abbey on September 20th 2015.

Arriva 0441 showing off its new livery for Leighton Buzzard service.

Arriva 2528 LK15FFW, one of several of these buses for the 33 route in High Wycombe

Birmingham 2548 arriving at the show site. I remember these buses in that city when working there in the early '70s.

Carousel's 401 acted as a control at the event.

COZY KP04GJX was once in the Oxford tube fleet as 50108. The 2004 show saw similar 50223 carry off the Best Coach in Show award.

East Kent CFN104 is a fine example of semi coaching buses in the late '40s.

Southend 245 was once a regular performer on the Southend - London - Reading service in the '80s.

WALSALL's 56, a Daimler Fleetline, was a veritable Leviathan in its day.

Very local operators

Redline's KB07OXF once a regular on Oxford Bus express services out of Oxford, now shows off its rather attractive livery
not betraying it 8 year age. I really do like this livery!

Redline YX65RGV now to be seen most days on a free, door-to-door bus service for students and staff between the High Wycombe and Uxbridge Campuses (with a valid Bucks New University ID card).
This year Bucks New University have acquired a higher spec bus, with 
more seats and free Wi-Fi. as seen by YX65RGV, operated by Redline.
14 return services each day are provided. Certain journeys are only term time services.

Stagecoach Oxford's new E400 MMC 10441 arrives at Woburn driven by your Editor.

The old brigade - restored by Mike Sutcliffe

Fantastic buses which bring the past to our present !
These buses are nearly 90 years old! 

More pictures from Gavin include some very interesting buses and coaches.

A fine example of a 12 metre Leyland seen somewhere near Wheatley. Anyone know its history?

One of this year's Poppy Buses, Abellio 2460 on the C2 seen on 29th October by Gavin Francis

An unusual appearance of a Routemaster this year on the C2 in connection with Remembrance Day,
Tower Transit's RM1005 works the C2 seen on 29th October by Gavin Francis.

IDBus has been renamed OUIBUS and their 128 is seen in Elizabeth Street on 20th November by Gavin Francis.

Metroline VWH2130 new on the 295 at Shepherds Bush on 11th November by Gavin Francis.

And now for some overall ads in London.

Metroline ADH15 on the 94 at Shepherds Bush Green on 11th November by Gavin Francis.

Metroline LT95 on the 390 at Notting Hill Gate on 11th November by Gavin Francis.

Z&S of Aylesbury operate this ex Eddie Stobart coach, R12ESL, seen at Kings Cross on November 3rd by Gavin Francis.

I always wondered what they did with baggage in these continental style baggage lockers!
Sindbad 300 at VCS on October 30th by Gavin Francis.

Gordon Scott  sent some nice pictures reflecting recent visits to Alexander's at Falkirk and a trip to New York

Arriva London HA5 LK65BZB for the 254 on test at Falkirk works on 20th November by Gordon Scott.

First Glasghow 44653 on test at Falkirk on 23rd October by Gordon Scott.

Big Bus Company ADL 7 an Enviro 500 in NYC on 13th November by Gordon Scott.

Ratp Group Enviro 400 nr 103 in NYC on 12th November by Gordon Scott.

Jack Cooper writes " Oxford bus company's Heartbeat branded Enviro 400 229 had broken down this morning whilst Thames Travel's 504, in white, had Carousel logo on the rear window. An OBC Heartbeat branded Citaro is on lone to Thames Travel and was operating on the T2." 

and TGM

The forecast Management Merger between Arriva Midlands and Arriva the Shires has begun with some recent management changes.  Initial manifestations have been the transfer of several redundant buses from Midlands to the Shires.  Several Darts plus one DAF-East Lancs double-deck have arrived at Shires garages.

I am led to understand that the new Wrightbus StreetLites are struggling on the hills around High Wycombe.

Not for the first time in the town transport experience buses sent to work in this very hilly area have failed to come up to expectation!!

One finds it interesting to see how things pan out.

An example of the hilly nature of the town is well shown in this picture of  DAF DB250LF-Wright Pulsar Gemini - DW78 LJ04LGW
on  a 48 working still in full London livery, on 4th November taken by Gavin Francis.

5462 on the 280 in New Rd Oxford on 26th October by Malcolm Crowe.

Early indications of Arriva's new buses coming seen on 31st May by Bernard Lewendon. 

Carousel Buses

The next three StreetLites, 403 to 405, were due in Oxford earlier this month and should, by now, be in service. 


Wt Streetlite DF SA9DSRXXX15141155 

Wt AM656 




Wt Streetlite DF SA9DSRXXX15141156 

Wt AM657 




Wt Streetlite DF SA9DSRXXX15141157 

Wt AM658 



Carousel 101, the original Trident flagship of the Oxford Park & Ride fleet works a 36D service and is seen climbing towards Cressex
on 4th November by Gavin Francis. I well remember taking this bus to Derby Day at Epsom Downs some 12 years ago,

An E200 Dart/MCV Evolution 553 (AE59AWM) has now arrived as forecast. It has been re-registered C3WYC. Also sometime in October Thames Travel's 504 arrived in white and Carousel logos were applied to the rear window.

Stephen Le Bras writes "You did ask me to provide a report on the closure of Bracknell garage but, to be honest, there was not much of a commemoration. I witnessed the last 191 leaving Windsor for Slough and its final journey towards Bracknell, a short time later.


Since then, it has been a case of building up the driver numbers at Slough to meet the additional operation of route 200 to LEGOLAND and the 702 Greenline services from Bracknell to London, now diverted via the old 191 service through North Ascot.


The last three years have seen the arrival of 15 hybrid Volvos to work alongside the existing Citaros, the end of the Solos replaced by new Wright saloons, the end of the Scania/Wrights and the impending departure of the last Dennis Darts. Just 5 remain in use-red 41336 and Barbi liveried 42339/41/656/673."

Until recently this bis was based at Bracknell painted in BeeLine Bus livery. Hants & Dorset trim have updated it and it now operates out of Slough.
First 64019 on the X74 in HIGH WYCOMBE on 4th November by Gavin Francis.

First 64020 branded for the 94 works an X74 HIGH WYCOMBE service on 4th November seen by Gavin Francis.

Three Citaros have effectively replaced the Scanias, 65724-6 which were the regulars on the X74.


Further afield 


First Worcester invest in new StreetDecks seen on 17th October by Richard Sharman.

 and Crusader Holidays

Hedley Shanks, Commercial Manager, Motts Travel  writes "Some changes in the Motts fleet, the decker came last week and it will be X800 MTT or X900 MTT. Ex Dublin Bus 00-D-70129, AV129. It is now H82F. We have one more to come. Apparently it was an airport bus.

GT15 MTT & CR15 MTT are C19F Mercedes 516 with EVM bodies. (Superb vehicles with all leather interior and wood effect flooring)


CT60 MTT & BU60 CRU are C8F and are van conversions by Excell. These two vehicles are just holiday/day excursion feeder mini coaches.

Many thanks to Hedley for this welcome update.


Excelsior Coaches, Bournemouth have now left the NX Network. Their Services to the Airports and London have been taken on by Go South Coast using the Levantes Excelsior previously operated.


Meanwhile the 310 is now in the Hands of Parks of Hamilton(Plymouth) who are now using Elites on this Service.

Parks HSK656 on a 310 diagram leaves GG Oxford on 5th November seen by Gavin Francis.

Parks HSK651 on a 310 diagram leaves GG Oxford on 6th November, suitably adorned with a poppy, seen by Gavin Francis.

New Oxford Bus c oach 54 on a 737 diagram leaves GG Oxford on 23rd October seen by Gavin Francis.

53 a Volvo B8R/Caetano Levante on the 737 on 4th November by Graham Low.

Phil Southall, the MD of Oxford Bus replied to my query regarding the difference between the B8RE and the B9R saying "There is no technical difference between the B8R and B9R as far as I understand it other than the engine is a bit smaller and it should therefore be more fuel efficient but time will tell!"

Phil adds that the seven E400s for 2 road will be 223 to 229. He also notes that the Hybrids displaced from service 5 and 500 that are temporarily on service 2 until we can do all the repaints.

224 in 2 road blue livery before the full br5anding had been applied and seen outside Debenhams on 9th November by Gavin Francis.

Special treatment for 315 with a moustache to support a local charity. Seen on 1st November by Gavin Francis.

252 on the 500 diverted via Hythe Bridge St on 26th October and seen by Gavin Francis.

254 at the train station on a 500 working on 30th October by Gavin Francis.

and at the Parkway terminus at Water Eaton on 6th November, again by Gavin Francis.

Ralph Adams writes "Park & ride 316 is a reserve for the route 500 and has had the off side seats removed to allow carriage of bicycles in a similar manner to 251-254. I do not know when it was converted but 114, the previous spare is now with Thames Travel as school bus fully upseated so probably at that time. It has been in use frequently since last Monday, start of the new route." 

Loaned nr12 leaves GG and is ex Q Line St Annes on Sea seen on 30th October by Gavin Francis.

OX 12 and 62 (GO63OXF) at GG Oxford on 26th October by Malcolm Crowe.

63 nears the end of its journey on an X90 working in New Rd Oxford on 26th October by Malcolm Crowe.

73 again on an X90 Working turns into Worcester St on 26th October by Malcolm Crowe.

231 on 13 in Park End St on 26th October by Malcolm Crowe.

316 on a 500 working in Worcester St on 26th October by Malcolm Crowe.


A regular contributor, Chris Maxfield, has joined Pulhams and I hope we may have an occasional contribution from him of this very interesting operator? 

Please refer to earlier in the page for more on this rather smart operator.


Nothing to report this month.



The upcoming vote on subsidised county services, due in February, could see a reduction in services leaving many country areas bereft of bus services. We shall have to wait and see.

In the meantime a significant investment has be made in service radiating from Banbury with new buses to the latest specification joining the fleet. These are five Gold E300s for the S4 and five E200MMCs for the 500. Quite an investment for a small depot with only 24 vehicles on charge.

Various reports of these buses appearing on different than intend routes are coming in.

Jack Cooper writes "A Gold Enviro 300 was on the 500 on a recent Saturday and I am sure I saw an Enviro 200mmc on the B6 on Sunday."

Yes, Jack, you were right as the photo below shows.

37403 on the B6 Banbury on Friday 13th November caught by Graham Low.

Sources tell me that passengers on the 500 are getting spoilt with gold buses and ask why they can't always have leather seats!!!

Another picture from Graham Low show these new buses in service.

37401 working on its intended route, the 500, on 13th November and caught by Graham Low.

I am also advised that on the first day of service for these buses, a grid locked situation saw one of the new E200MMCs having to divert via the M40 to reach Brackley!!!

37401 in Banbury Depot for type training on 27th October by Richard Sharman.

37402-5 waiting delivery to Banbury from Oxford on 28th October by Richard Sharman/

Other pictures submitted

Oxford's 36982 lines up perfectly with the building behind at Frideswide Sq on 28th October by Richard Sharman.

A rainbow over Stagecoach Oxford by Craig McConn

Scania 15994 on an S3 working seen in St Giles on 1st November by Gavin Francis.

Solo SR 47834 from Banbury on special working in Oxford St Giles on 16th November by Gavin Francis.
These SR Solos are to move to Witney by January for services into Oxford which must comply with emission regulations.
The older Solos at Witney will then move to Banbury in exchange.

Bob Telfer writes "I noticed you're looking for pictures of the Stagecoach MANs that have recently been transferred to Yorkshire, so here's one for you. It was taken in Conisbrough on 13 October. The bus is working form Rawmarsh depot (still the original Mexborough & Swinton premises!) and is working service 221 from Rotherham to Doncaster - via Swinton and Mexborough."

22771 seen on the 221 in Conisbrough on 13th October by Bob Telfer.

Cheltenham & Gloucester

Stagecoach Cheltenham and Gloucester has expanded south again with another route from Dursley. This time it's the rump of First's 310/311 service that became the 87 then passed to Severnside Transport and is now the 60. 

47553 VX07LYF in Thornbury on 13th November 2015 by Carl Berry.

 (Stagecoach has had the 88 service that First introduced at the same time as the 87 for a while now.)

With thanks to Carl Berry for this report and picture.

South East

Fleet changes at Stagecoach South East have seen further non-DDA saloons ousted with Volvo B10Ms 20011 (this was new to Oxford as a Bus Points vehicle!) and 20956 now in the Reserve Fleet from Thanet, with MAN/ALX300 22054 (once with Oxford) now on the allocation at Thanet. Ashford has lost MAN/ALX300 22194 to the Reserve Fleet, with 22942 (also with Oxford) allocated as a replacement. All of the vehicles which were awaiting disposal - Volvo Olympians 16022, 16270, 16356/71/87/88; Volvo B10Ms 20008, 20312, 20642/44 and MAN/ALX300s 22006/07/09 - have been sold.


See under Jottings about change to Swindon bus station by Marcus Lapthorn.

50276 leaving Gloucester Green bus station via Hythe Bridge St bound for London with MC driving on 28th November by Richard Sharman.

Ex Oxford tube coach 52026 M103XBW, now a trainer, with West Scotland is noted as for disposal to be sold.

On 18th October I was pleasantly surprised to be asked to help with a Megabus Gold Astromega which encountered problems on its journey from Scotland to London earlier in the day. We had to recover the coach from the A34 near the M40 junction 9. The coach was recovered  and I rode in the recovery truck back to the depot. Immediately on arrival the offending offside wheel which had cuased the problem was removed and replaced by a new one. Then we had to do some test runs including a 50k run before the coach was proclaimed fit for service once again.

Recovery on the A34. Malcolm Crowe.

On the A40 in Stokenchurch with MC at the wheel and taken by Gavin Francis.

The site for many of the pictures on this web page, Stokenchurch by the Kings Arms.

The coach was then ready for further service after a most efficient repair!

WAs this Snowdon's coach helping Megabus out?  6th November by Gavin Francis. 

Ralph Adams writes "Citaros 831/832, from Oxford,  which went on loan to Thames Travel have departed, 832 to COMS, 831 unknown to me. However 833 is on temporary loan with A4 cards.

504 (Science Park livery) has departed and 709 returned to Wallingford from Carousel."

As Ralph mentions under  the Oxford heading 114 has now moved to TT as is employed on school contracts.

706 on the 63 in New Rd on 26th October by Malcolm Crowe.

508 on the 63 instead of the Normal Solo on 29th October by Richard Sharman.

Citaro 868 Connector on the X1 in St Aldates on 28th October seen by Richard Sharman.



Thamesdown and Swindon by Marcus Lapthorn

Swindon Borough Council have decided to close several town centre car parks and some of those will be demolished. They cite the reasons as the town having car park overcapacity, the cost of keeping them open, the cost of insurance and them not being up to modern day standards. 

The public car park next to Swindon bus station has already been partly demolished and this has necessitated changes to the approach route to the bus station. The area within the bus station previously allocated to ‘out of service ‘ buses has been closed and the new bus parking area and approach route is through one of the now closed public car parks. 

A new multi storey car park has been opened near to the bus station and I photographed the general area from the 6th floor of this car park. I have attached 8 photographs which may be of interest to some of your readers.


Swindon bus station - SCW 15648 on 23rd October by Marcus Lapthorn.

Swindon bus station - West's15763 on 23rd October by Marcus Lapthorn.

Swindon bus station - West trainer 52300 on 23rd October by Marcus Lapthorn.

Kings Ferry and a new commuter service

The Kings Ferry is launching a new commuter service between Maidstone and London, taking in Grove Green and Weavering. Starting 5 October, the service will cost less than £10 per day and has a guaranteed seat policy. It will also have a brand new bespoke vehicle allocated to the route. To launch the new Maidstone service, all new customers will be offered a two week free trial, or eight weeks for the price of four. Commuters making the move from the train or other coach services can take advantage of the ‘Ticket Trade-in’ offer.

The Kings Ferry MD, Ian Fraser, said, ‘The Kings Ferry has operated tens of millions of commuter journeys directly into the heart of London for decades and we’re really delighted to launch our new Maidstone service. Our expertise is built upon almost forty years of business and we hope commuters will enjoy both the quality of the service on offer and the financial savings too. We’re really looking forward to welcoming people on board.’

Bus Travel at risk

Several transport groups have warned that ‘everyday transport’, including bus travel, is at risk. In a letter to the Transport Secretary, Patrick McLoughlin, the organisations note that his department’s unprotected budget faces a cut of 25% to 40% in the Chancellor’s spending review. Since major investment programmes for roads and railways are ring-fenced, they believe this means cuts are expected to fall disproportionately on local transport. The letter warns that as a result local bus services will see further reductions in services and increases in fares.

The groups involved in the letter include the Campaign for Better Transport (CfBT), Passenger Transport Executive Group (PTEG), Sustrans, Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) and Living Streets. The organisations claim such cuts to roads and public transport would have hugely damaging economic and social consequences. They wish to see the government protect and enhance everyday transport, through smarter spending, such as creating efficient cross-government funding programmes; rebalancing capital and revenue funding; and reviewing major transport programmes, especially the Road Investment Strategy.

Chief Executive of the CfBT, Stephen Joseph, said, ‘Our analysis shows that the Spending Review risks hitting very hard the everyday transport that people and communities rely on, while programmes like big road building schemes will escape unscathed. We hope the Transport Secretary will ensure that the Review has a better balance between the major capital programmes and the funding for this everyday transport.’

West Yorkshire Combined Authority Transport Committee Chair, Cllr Keith Wakefield, has added his concerns to those expressed in the letter to government. He said, ‘People and businesses across West Yorkshire and the City Region rely upon bus and train services, cycling and walking provision and local roads. Cuts to these critical local links through a reduction of up to 40% in the DfT’s budget will undermine the growth to which we and the government are committed as part of the Northern Powerhouse. They could also lead to people and communities being cut off from vital local services and facilities and missing out on education, training and employment opportunities. The Combined Authority recently took the decision to extend half-fare bus and train travel to all 16 to 18 year olds living in West Yorkshire from November to increase young people’s access to apprenticeships and training. But the local services need to be there for those young people to use.’

‘Of course we need the major road and rail investment programmes that are protected in the Spending Review, although we’d like to see some firm commitments on the electrification of rail routes in the north. However, there is a danger that the investment in these high-profile schemes will be wasted if the local, everyday transport is neglected by the Government’s Spending Review.’

Fishwick’s demise

Fishwick’s has ceased trading. This old established company based in Leyland, Lancs once had a 100% Leyland fleet, appropriate as it was in the factory's backyard.


Stagecoach a least registered most of their routes. As a result Rock Ferry depot's Gold buses have entered service sooner than planned to allow cascades to Preston.

A rather unique double decker, A462LFV was an ex Leyland owned bus and this picture taken in July 2009
shows the bus in pristine condition at the annual rally in Fleetwood.
The bus was new as a Leyland development vehicle and is a Leyland Atlantean with ECW bodywork looking very much like an Olympian.


Fishwick's ran a tour programme which included Oxford.
Here we see a Van Hool Alizee YJ07JWG in Oxpens Coach Park on 20th May 2013 taken by Gavin Francis.


Mike Penn's interesting web site for pictures

You might be interested to know that I have now uploaded 268 photos taken in Beds, Bucks and Herts in the year 2000 to my website -

One of the major events of the year was the purchase by Arriva the Shires of the City of Oxford operation in High Wycombe on December 13th. Two days later, as can be seen from the photographs, vehicles had received Arriva The Shires fleet names and legal lettering but retained their Oxford fleet numbers.

The other major event was the enforced sale of the Lutonian operation by Arriva the Shires.

Both Arriva The Shires and Arriva East Herts & Essex continued to repaint vehicles into Arriva livery though there were still many in previous liveries.

Elsewhere in the region M K Metro continued their policy of purchasing various interesting secondhand vehicles. Some of these came from Border Buses – the company in Lancashire that M K Metro had bought.

Buffalo Travel continued to run but Seamarks were taken over by Dunn-Line early in the year.

Many other independents are also represented. 

Mike Penn

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ORDER NOW FOR £20+ £3 p&p

This final installment of the 4-volume 800-page history of the Thames Valley Traction Co. Ltd. brings the story to its conclusion on the last day of 1971.

All route developments and changes to the fleet are fully detailed, along with special appendices for the service vehicle fleet, garages and out-stations, a route map, garage allocations and working arrangements.

Profusely illustrated with 548 monochrome half-tone illustrations and a full-colour section of 45 photos, this provides a very comprehensive history of this interesting decade, including the numerous secondhand vehicles acquired during those years. Demand will be high, so

order now from: Paul Lacey, 17 Sparrow Close

Woosehill, Wokingham, Berkshire, RG41 3HT

If you are local and wish to collect please call me on 0118 979 4097 and arrange a suitable time, but no casual callers please!


Newbury & District History


Paul Lacey has now released his long awaited history of Newbury & District.

The book covers the whole history of this fascinating company which although based in Newbury was seen in Oxford, Harwell and many surrounding areas.

Its coaches were often hired by South Midland who ran between Oxford & London and there was quite a lot of interchange between the fleets, when both owned by Red & White.

The company ran from 1932 until 1951 but its memory lingers on within Newbury and recent changes there reflect this.

The book is exceptionally well researched and contains many photographs plus memories and fleet lists of the company and its constituents.

Just mention OCBP when ordering from:

Paul Lacey,
17 Sparrow Close
Berkshire RG41 3HT.