Oxford Chiltern Bus Page

Spottings & Jottings

Issue nr 49 - August  28th  2011

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

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Well, better late than never. This has been due to my work pattern and so we have a really bumper issue. A record of over 400 pictures plus events going back over two months in total.

A lot has been happening since the last page and this includes the appalling incidents when looting and civil disturbances took place. These included some buses being set alight which takes us to a whole new level of problems besetting our country.

On a more pleasant note there are quite a few items of interest in this issue including some new deliveries, such as new coaches for First in Berkshire, more new buses in London and the entry into service of two Plaxton Primos with Carousel. Geoff Cunliffe has provided more historic pictures from the '50s which will appeal very much to my older readers.

One event of sorrow was the crash of a Red Arrow Hawk at Bournemouth recently and for my own tribute I would like to thank Richard Sharman for wonderful picture taken at RAF Fairford last month.

The Red Arrows in a 9 formation fly-past on July 17th 2011 at Fairford.

Train versus the coach between Oxford and London

I could not help but notice a piece in this week's issue of The Oxford Times by a gentleman who was less than impressed by the coach service from Oxford to London via Shepherds Bush and Notting Hill Gate. He claimed that the seats, other than those by the tables were cramped and uncomfortable, the coach also giving a bumpy and hot ride to the capital.

He then extolled the virtue of the train service, which although 40 minutes late, gave a 46 minute running time into Paddington. Actually a total of 1 hr and 26 minutes from station to station if the delay is included! The coach generally takes around the same time and runs every 15 minutes throughout the day, something not achieved by the train. I wonder how often the trains run and what happens after 0122 from London when the next train isn't until 0521! Equally the one before the 0122 is 2342.  At this time the coaches are every 30 minutes and run hourly throughout the night. Never a last coach!

From a price point of view he quoted his fare of £13 return but did admit this had to be booked in advance on line. The coach fare can be booked on line with Megabus and is often much lower.

Also the coach stops five times in London and seven times in Oxford and for the time being parking at Thornhill Park & Ride is free. This is not achieved by the train!

Finally and perhaps quite importantly you will always have a seat on the coach, standing is not allowed, whereas the train route is one of the most overcrowded in the U.K. with two morning peak trains being nearly the worst in the country. I wonder how standing, on an evening commuter train, from London to at least Reading, cheek by jowl with strangers, compares to that claimed not so comfortable seat on the coach?

Hemel Hempstead bus only roadway flouted by motorists

Ian Brown writes "this story is from Bus & Coach Professional on line. The road referred to many readers will know well. Behind the shopping centre and leaving HH Bus Station with Water Gardens on your right and heading towards the `funny roundabout`(also known as the magic roundabout. Ed.), the road curves tightly to right with hotel on left. This is the location mentioned. After this, up to some lights, drivers would have turned left towards funny roundabout with very tall former Kodak HQ on right.
In the first weekend of new enforcement of a bus-only section of road in Hemel Hempstead 3,000 motorists were found to be flouting the restrictions. Stuart Pile, cabinet member for highways and transport at Hertfordshire county council, says: “This is very disappointing as we have put up clear signs in the area announcing the traffic restriction and had widespread coverage in the local media.

“However, it does show the extent of the problem and the impact this has inevitably had on buses and the surrounding transport network.”

This serves to emphasise the way the ordinary motorist flouts the rules on an ever increasing level in many of our cities and towns. In Oxford where there are bus/taxi only routes, many motorists ride through seemingly oblivious to the signs. Indeed in Oxford if one counts the High Street bus gate, Castle Street traffic lights and the restrictions in George Street, a driver could get three fines in one trip!!!

Indeed such actions continue many years after the restrictions were introduced and in spite of very adequate signage!

Latest from Hemel on 26th August.
Hemel Gazette on line:
Published on Thursday 25 August 2011 17:46
"MORE than 10,000 people have now been fined for driving along Moor End Road.
The figure equates to more than 12 per cent of the population of Hemel Hempstead.
Since August 8 highways chiefs have been fining drivers who use the road, which is technically restricted to buses and taxis.
Motorists have reacted with fury after receiving £60 fines."


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.


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 per person per meeting depending on numbers.

Next meeting: Tuesday, 20th September 2011

Local slides (1960s & 70s) by Ian Thompson
check the link below for travel details

19.30pm - 21.30pm

Meetings are held in the upstairs function room at:

The Folly Bridge Inn

38 Abingdon Road



Some limited parking at the back of the pub, also close to bus stops (frequent X3/X13 or 35 routes stop outside)

or a short walk from Oxford City Centre - For directions click HERE 


All meetings start at 19.30pm although you are welcome to come along beforehand for food in the bar.

Future meetings are planned as follows:
Aug - No meeting, summer break
Oct 18th - South Midland buses by Paul Lacey (visiting speaker)
Nov 22nd - Around Britain by Bus by Graham Low / Chris Bates
Dec 13th - Pictures from the John Law collection (Britain/Worldwide from 1960's onwards) by John Law (visiting speaker).

A detailed programme of meetings can be found at the following link and we hope many of you will attend future meetings.



The level of contribution to this page by readers is excellent, indeed in modern parlance, very cool! Thank you. 

Malcolm Crowe - Editor - OCBP - August 28th 2011.


From Richard Sharman

Ex Oxford's at Silverstone 2011 by Richard Sharman

Stagecoach Midlands 16515 from Leamington and Stagecoach South 16523 from Basingstoke help out at Silverstone on July 9th.

North Weald 2011

Brighton & Hove 420 BJ11XHW, a brand new Volvo/Wrights.

Motts Solo MB07BUS, once the stalwart on the M1 from Stokenchurch to Reading, a route now curtailed at Watlington and operated by Whites.

Thamesdown Versa 407 WX60EDO seen at North Weald on July 3rd 2011.

Other pictures from Richard.

Two Oxford E400H's cross paths on the 300 in George Street on July 24th

Stagecoach also feature with two of the their E400Hs passing in High Street.

No less than five Oxford Bus Century's "in the Green"!

Farleigh coaches SEZ8838 showing their colourful livery at Oxpens on July 31st.

Not a red bus in sight - the city centre scene in July 2011 with The Tom tower as a backdrop.

SC East 53022 YV03TZN devoid of NEx livery, well nearly, in Oxpens on July 30th. Has this left Stagecoach service?

One of two of Weavaway's New Van Hool's performs a NX 539 dupe to Glasgow

A regular sight at Weekends in Oxford recently has been this Olympian 

Tridents are now also seem to be used on the 66 on a Sunday

Warwickshire E400 in the sun on a Sunday working of the S3. This bus is based at Stratford-upon-Avon depot.

August 26th

Oxfordshire and East Pointers operate the former Geoff Amos Service GA01, shortly to be renumbered 200.
(note the East Pointer displays incorrectly GA1)

Laguna Holidays Irizar dropping off at Banbury Bus Station

Heyfordian E200 on the Bicester Service

Various Oxford ALX200 Darts now operate out of Banbury. 33822 has been at Banbury for some months now
but 33653 is a recent transfer.

From Steve Gee.

Steve writes "Just a quick line, noted Witney based Scania/ Enviro 400 15618 OU10BGX heading north on the M1 by J28 this afternoon 22/7, display set to Out Of Service.

De Courcey have a pair of ex Oxford B10M's which see regular use on their X6 Coventry- Leicester service alongside their newish deckers."

(Now some pictures of these would be nice. Ed.) 

From Adam Green

Adam writes to send some pictures of recent workings in his area.

3086 was on Hemel town service on the 2 

4362 was on the 500 to Aylesbury then on the 320 to Watford later in the evening it has a new paint livery with white and a Blue Bottom.
I understand that this livery is for schools and rail replacement work. Ed.

5159 was on the 500 going to Watford, a long way from its original haunt on the 280!

3146 was on the 52 from High Wycombe, nowhere near its branded route.

3267 is seen on the 500 to Aylesbury leaving Hemel.

From Gavin Francis 

Gavin having attended the first Wycombe match (football!) writes "The Scunthorpe Team Coach had a good reg as their nickname is 'The Iron', see the picture below."

We just managed a draw but the good news is Oxford lost!

I also noted another Plastow's in Stokenchurch. This is in addition to the one noted the other day full of people in yellow jackets.


I wonder if the yellow jacketed people had anything to do with the current road resurfacing which took place from August 9th until the 23rd on the A40 through the village? Ed.

Mark Turner sent pictures taken during a recent visit he made to Southend. This was August 11th.

Stephen Le Bras writes "Last Saturday (August 13th) saw three new Volvo B9TL/Wright Gemini enter service on the 702. This effectively makes it a 'decker route through Monday to Saturday, with the odd single decker on Sundays. Fleet numbers are 37985-87 (reg BJ11XGY,ECY,ECX)

Picture by Malcolm Crowe.

The Arriva tri-axle 11 plate fleet of open toppers has reached VXE728, halfway through a fleet renewal with the larger Volvo/Optare mark.

Picture by Gavin Francis.

My list of new National Express 11 plate Levantes has reached a potential 85 with more coming on line each week. Latest to receive more is service 025, with an odd one for the 490 to Norwich.

What really makes life interesting are the duplicates on NX, Megabus (including an Enviro single decker from Wales) and Eurolines. I did see a photo of the first articulated Stagecoach coach from Glasgow on trial, but you need to be in Victoria at 06.40 to see it!"

From Glenn Knight

This week w/c 22/08/2011 I am on Railway Replacement - Chiltern Railways. A few pictures attached as follows

Arriva N42JPP seen on rail replacement.

Arriva 5423 W423XKX now at Hemel Hempstead transferred from Ware this also broke down at 1830 and was still here at 0100 the next morning!

Arriva 5149 S149KNK also seen on the same duty.


Fleet News 

 Arriva logo

Adam Green noted that Dart 3532 was on the 52 from Hemel to High Wycombe on July 25th.

Sean Newlyn noted Watford based Citaro 3918 broken down in North Watford. This was taken from the upper deck of a Volvo Olympian on Route 1 on 22nd July 2011. 

Glenn Knight noted coach 4362 in Hemel Hempstead on the 500 to Watford, this working being operated by Aylesbury depot. The coach is in an unusual livery and one wonders why?

See above Ed. 

Graham Low noted Trident 5432 on the 280 for a whole week recently, in spite of its claim to be Watford-bound! It lacks the usual white lining round its cow's horns and the yellow separating the blue from turquoise. (see picture below)

Nigel Peach says "Arriva appear to have had a clear out of withdrawn buses at Cressex depot. When I was there last weekend (23rd) there were seven such vehicles. Today (31st) there are only two: DAF 4491 (which must have been there for 18 months or so now) and Volvo B6 3240, which curiously, is still on the lists at the bus station (unlike the other withdrawn buses). It's listed as "Vehicle off Road". This is another bus that must have been out of action for well over a year.

The five buses that have disappeared this week are Scanias 3147 51 and 58, step entrance Dart 3413 and K reg Dart 3371 "The Cool Bus Project".

Nigel later adds "following the transfer of the Darts from MK, Arriva have withdrawn two more Scanias at High Wycombe which are now both parked up at Cressex. 3143 (N693 EUR) is not a surprise as it's one of the dwindling batch of East Lancs European bodied vehicles. (Just four survive now at HW: 3146/61-3)
But I'm surprised at the withdrawal of newer Scania 3203 (R203 RBM), a Northern Counties Paladin example. This is the one from that batch that was branded for Blue Route 32.
The ranks of withdrawn vehicles at Cressex which had dwindled following a purge now numbers 5. The above two have joined 4491 and 3240, both there for over a year, and have also been joined by 3174 (P674 OPP), one of the East Lancs Flyte bodied Darts, which I think has come from MK."

Picture taken by M Crowe on 27th August.

Now follow a number of pictures from various contributors.

Following on from Nigel's comments I passed by on August 27th and noted what is probably a transfer from Stevenage, 3308 which is shown on the end of the line in the picture below.

Some pictures taken in Thame are interesting as they include a picture of an Olympian on the 110. 

Pictures by Malcolm Crowe.

Some more pictures from your Editor show buses in and around High Wycombe & Stokenchurch.

The 280 routes provides interest and we see 5437 in Oxford Park End Street.

Gavin Francis caught 5426 operating on August 27th on the 280, having just been transferred from Ware. Picture by Gavin Francis.

More of Gavin's pictures show some interesting workings.

Versa 2401 is seen on an 800 working and then 3172 on the 52 with 3298 on the 45, all in High Wycombe.

Scania 3203 is seen shortly before withdrawal. 3454 has Park & Ride advertising on the rear and 3536 was recently transferred from MK.
All are seen in Stokenchurch.

3482 is seen on the Park & Ride 100, this is a most uncomfortable bus if one rides on the rear seats, they are like lead!!

Brand new 3886 seen at Luton airport on August 20th on service 100 from Stevenage, which is why Wycombe has got more castoffs.

A nice super rear on a Citaro on the 321 seen at Luton Airport.

4363 in revised livery works a 61 service to Aylesbury on August 17th.

Olympian 5146 is seen working the 321 from Watford, a route once the preserve of the STL double deckers of London Transport.

Green Line 4379 is seen passing the Bag 'O Nails near Victoria displaying the revised livery being applied to these coaches.
For comparison we can see 4387, the last of the batch and only 09 plate still in full easybus livery but not for much longer.

Looking resplendent in the red and cream of The Original Tour operated by Arriva, brand new VXE722 is seen
passing the Bag 'O Nails near Victoria when still quite new, gleaming in the late summer sunshine. 


Peter Cabin writes "recently repainted Primo YX07HNO was working on service 27 Rayners Avenue via Cock Lane on August 9th."

Noel Clark, Operations Manager, Carousel Buses Limited writes that the recently acquired Primos (P22 and P24) have been painted and vinyled. 
They have entered service and photos are shown below of each bus.
P24 is in BCC Countyrider livery specifically for the 577/581/582 services.

Now follow a number of pictures from various contributors.

The original Primo is seen at Stokenchurch on the 2A. This is a very rare if not first appearance in Stokenchurch.
Picture taken on August 17th by Gavin Francis.

Two East Lancs with two different companies, seen in Stokenchurch.
The difference is that the Arriva bus was once gas powered and worked in Glasgow to and from the airport
whereas the Carousel model, when new, worked the Heathrow link service before the Heathrow express reached the airport.
Picture by Malcolm Crowe on August 12th 2011. 

Charlton Services

Andrew Dyer writes to advise of a new addition to the Charlton-on-Otmoor Services fleet.

They have just purchased L346 KCK - a DP seated Volvo B10M /Alexander PS from Stagecoach South (fleet number 20446.)

Stephen Le Bras writes "Regarding the latest BSJ, TN32963 has already gone to Bracknell and left the X74 behind for the moment. TN33153 has gone to Slough in return on loan and is used on the X74."

Picture by Gavin Francis.

Ex First London Citaro 64001, along with 64002 is now at Slough in Barbie livery converted to single door.
64005 has been delicensed for conversion to single door layout and the three buses are planned to work the X74.

64001 is now a regular performer on the X74. Picture by Gavin Francis.

The older batch of Volvo double deck coaches are a regular sight in London now joined by three new coaches as seen below.
Picture by Gavin Francis.

The three coaches are 37985-7 (BJ11ECV,ECX and XGY)
37985 seen on August 14th by Malcolm Crowe.

TN33145 is seen shortly before the delivery of the new double deckers. Picture by Gavin Francis on August 1st 2011.

Glenn Knight has provided a picture of a new coach seen on the Rail-Air service at Heathrow Airport in the afternoon of august 11th. It is 20806 (YX11HBO) a Volvo Plaxton, one of two new ones currently being operated by First Berkshire.

There are two of these new coaches which are for the Rail-Air service.
They are 20806/7 (YX11 HPO/P) being Volvo B9R and will receive the latest Rail-Air branding later as they are to be used elsewhere on a special job in September.
They have leather seats with an offside table for four with power sockets throughout.

Heyfordain KX58GTF r25 OX new to Galleon of Harlow 240811 G Francis
Heyfordian KX58GTF on route 25 in Oxford and was new to Galleon of Harlow and now probably on loan from Dawson Rentals.
Seen on August 24th by Gavin Francis.


An item of significance is the collapse of Hookways, one of National Express's more recent contractors. Ken Baker secured a picture of what must have been one of their last workings on August 5th when the coach below is seen leaving Barnstaple for London.

Picture by Ken Baker.

Following the picture of a white coach on a Wembley service in the last issue Stephen Le Bras writes "YN60BVV, I would imagine is operated by Newbury Coaches of Ledbury but I can't be sure. I know that they operate at least one coach in that series."

Glenn Knight sent a picture of a 787 working at Luton Airport saying "Seen at Luton Airport on 28-July-2011 seen operating the 1620 787 to Heathrow Airport via Hemel Hempstead is Young's of Cambridge Scania K112CRS Jonckheere UIL 2090 (A50 JLW)."

Richard Sharman notes that Stuarts of Carluke have been providing a three times a week duplicate on National Express service 539 from Oxford to Glasgow and v.v. due to high loadings

Richard adds "East Yorkshire owned Whittles have recently diversified into National Express work. Whittles now operate, amongst others, the 444. 88 is seen here passing through Oxfordshire the way to Worcester on a late Evening service."

Whittles FJ11GKC passes by Oxford.

Now follow a number of pictures from various contributors.

Selwyns YN11AYA r 303 GG 040811 G Francis
Selwyn's Elite YN11AYA works the 303 through Gloucester Green on August 4th seen by Gavin Francis.

NEx 737 and 787 services on the A41 near Hemel on July 3rd taken by Richard Sharman.

NEx Excelsior Enigma 909 A17XEL in Banbury 040811 R Sharman
NEx Excelsior Enigma 909 A17XEL in Banbury on July 4th by Richard Sharman.

NEx Flights Hallmark Levante FJ11GKP  in Banbury 040811 R Sharman
NEx Flights Hallmark Levante FJ11GKP in Banbury on August 4th caught in the lens of Richard Sharman.
Note that the destination screen has already failed! I would comment that the screen on these coaches, unlike the earlier batches are very dim
and indeed almost impossible to read on a sunny day, especially when passing on the motorway. I wonder why?

National Express are having great success with their 539 service and a relief coach is required on most days from Oxford to Glasgow.

NEx Stuarts of Carluke USV803 r 539 relief OXF 120811 R Sharman
NEx Stuarts of Carluke USV803 on a 539 relief near Oxford on August 12th taken by Richard Sharman.

A regular operator in the relief is Weavaway who have been using brand new coaches!

NEx Weavaway WA11HXS r 539 relief OXF GG 240711 R Sharman
NEx Weavaway WA11HXS on a 539 relief service at Gloucester Green on July 24th by Richard Sharman.

NEx Weavaway WA11HXS r 539 relief 090811 M Crowe
And again on August 9th in this picture taken by Malcolm Crowe.

NEx Weavaway V11OOL r539 relief OX 100811 G Francis
On the 10th August a Van Hool tri-axle was in use as seen in this picture by Gavin Francis.

Further afield more pictures from contributors.

NEx FJ57KGE SH25 BagO Nails 240811 G Francis
National Express have changed the fleet numbering system in recent weeks and this coach is now SH25 (Start Hill, Stansted)
Other prefixes' are CY for Crawley and SR for Sipson Road, Heathrow.

NEx CY126 r 025 Sammys 160811 M Crowe
Here we see a new Levante operated by NEx Crawley with fleet number CY126. It is seen on arrival at VCS
and the NO refers to "has it been cleaned?". An even newer coach is FJ11RDO, often seen on the 540.
Picture by Malcolm Crowe.

FJ11RDO is Sipson Road allocated as SR120 and a picture can be found at the following link: http://www.flickr.com/photos/jongraham890/6066131648/in/pool-1611212@N20/

NEx SGCB FJ57KGF with new super rear 100811 G Francis
NEx South Gloucester FJ57KGF shows off a new super rear in Bulleid Way on August 10th pictured by Gavin Francis.

SC CG 59305 r 444 Bulleid Way LON 240811 G Francis
Stagecoach Gloucester's 59305 working a 444 service into London on August 24th as seen by Gavin Francis.

NEx Silverdale FJ09DXU r 767 STN new super rear 260711 G Francis
Another super rear caught by Gavin is this one on Silverdale's FJ09DXU on the 767 at Stansted on July 26th.

NEx SCO 53704 r 737 Luton Airport 270711 G Francis
NEx Stagecoach Oxford's 53704 on the 737 at Luton Airport on July 27th by Gavin Francis.

NEx Stansted seem to be having problems in finding coaches for their services.
Here Richmond's 851FYD on the 787 at Luton Airport on July 31st by Gavin Francis.

I look forward to your reports of further new Levantes. There are up to 100 news ones delivered or about to be and also a number of new contractors following the demise of one and maybe others.

Company update

25 July 2011

Into service: 301-4/6/7 4/11
305/8-12 5/11
313-7 6/11

Withdrawn (6/11):
902/3/8/9 withdrawn
793/4/7 returned to Brighton & Hove

Withdrawn (7/11)
796/9 returned to Brighton & Hove
811/3-9 to Go North East
107/9/12 withdrawn

25 May 2011

Into service: new hybrids up to 312

Withdrawn: 792/7: returned to Brighton & Hove
812: to Go North East
909: to reserve

I am told that possibly two Tridents, 908 and 909 have been transferred to Thames Travel and their P&R livery has been used to produce a kind of hybrid livery somewhat akin to the Thames Travel livery. Pictures and confirmation would be welcome.

The new timetables are now in operation on the 3,5,8 and 9 with buses from both Oxford Bus and Stagecoach showing the same destinations and route numbers. To those of us who have been around for a number of years this still seems a little strange. A number of pictures are to hand showing buses on the revised routes.

From contributors we have a few pictures of Oxford buses in their present home areas.

Neil Gow writes "Here are a couple of pictures of former Oxford vehicles working for fellow Go-ahead subsidiary Damory Coaches (Hants and Dorset). R529 DWL was better known as R10OXF during its time at Oxford. It was photographed at Wimborne on 22nd July."

Damory 5040 Wimborne r 182 was OXF 10 R10OXF 260711 N Gow
Damory 5040 at Wimborne on the 182 to Blandford started life a Oxford's nr 10 (R10OXF) and is seen on July 26th by Neil Gow. 

"N416 NRG was one of the four Plaxton bodied Volvo B10Bs diverted from Gateshead & District to join the 24 delivered directly to COMS, and was initially numbered 654 before becoming 628. It was seen at Ringwood on 6th July."

Damory 5092 at Ringwood r 315 260711 N Gow
Damory 5092 seen at Ringwood on the 315 to Blandford was once Oxford's 628 and a regular on the Barton route in the evenings.
Also it once worked the X3 and is seen on July 26th by Neil Gow.

Robin here, thought I'd share my photos of ex Oxford (R811NUD) which is now registered XXI5902 which is in a special livery for a service on the Isle of Wight and (R809NUD) which is now in the current Fountain Coaches livery.

XXI 8502 

Mike Penn adds to the above saying "Readers might be interested in this photo of former City of Oxford and Arriva The Shires Plaxton Verde bodied Volvo B10B, N624FJO, taken today in Milton Keynes. It appears to be owned by, or at least used by, The MK Dons Sport and Education Trust."

N624FJO in MK

Now follow a number of pictures from various contributors.

OX 216 r 5 OX 090811 M Crowe
Oxford's 216 seen in Old Greyfriars Street where the speed limit is 20MPH but the sign for the corner says 25MPH. How bizarre!
Picture taken on August 9th by Malcolm Crowe.

OX 314 and 230 Thornhill route 400 020811 G Francis
In spite of a large batch of new buses for the Park & Ride services, an odd red one still gets used and Hybrid 314 is followed here by Scania 230 at Thornhill on August 2nd.
Picture by Gavin Francis.

OX 307 and 117 Magdelen St OX 240811 G Francis
Indeed as late as August 24th Trident 117 was still in service, is this now the only one?
It was on the 300 and follows 307 on the 500 in Magdalen St in this picture from Gavin Francis.

Elasticity 838 works a 35 road service to Abingdon. Picture by Gavin Francis on August 3rd.

Red Line MK58KYT r 340 Stokenchurch 240711 G Francis
Red Line Solo MK58KYT working route 340 between Stokenchurch and High Wycombe on the 340.
Caught on camera by Gavin Francis on July 24th 2011.

Red Line Y962KRX r 158 WYC 160811 G Francis
In a rather bizarre green livery quite unlike the official one Red Line Y962KRX waits to work a 158 service to Marlow.
Seen in Wycombe bus station on August 16th by Gavin Francis. 

Red Rose

The company is introducing a new livery as seen below. Seemingly one bus a week is going for repaint. Also Solo RR03BUS has now left the fleet.

Red Rose new livery
OU07FKJ is seen at Wycombe on August 16th by Gavin Francis.

Red Rose _Y829TGH in Amersham on r 71 230811 T Wong Min
Also repainted in the new livery is this Dart Y829TGH in Amersham on route 71 on August 23rd by Terry Wong Min.

Red Rose Y359LCK r 106 WYC 050811 G GFrancis
Finally and still in the old livery we see Dart Y359LCK again on route 106 in Wycombe on August 5th from Gavin Francis.

RH Buses 810 L651MYG freshly repainted 010711 R Sharman
RH Buses 810 L651MYG freshly repainted and seen on July 1st by Richard Sharman. 

In a report below under Jottings Geoff Amos has closed down and the GA01 and 02 services have been taken over by Stagecoach. 

Steve Gee writes "a couple of route changes affecting Banbury services for you.
Stagecoach Banbury depot has taken over routes GA01 (Banbury- Woodford Halse) and the GA02 (Woodford) and the GA02 (Woodford Halse- Rugby) from Geoff Amos recently. Timetables on the Stagecoach website are dated 6th August.- Rugby) from Geoff Amos recently. Timetables on the Stagecoach website are dated 6th August.
I've noted Transbus/ADL Pointers 35212 and 34469 at work on the GA2 during the week. The first is a recent transfer from Bedford I think."

Rugby have been running some diagrams and 35212 is their bus. Ed.

Further details and pictures can be found under the Jottings heading below.


Following the reduction in services with Transform Oxford a number of the oldest M A N s are currently held in reserve. These included 22925, 22926, 22933, 22934, 22935 and 22941.

Darts 33653 and 33655 have been transferred to Banbury to cover the Amos GA01 and GA02 workings after the collapse of Amos.

M A N s 22936 and 22940 have been returned from reserve to cover for the two Darts at Oxford.

National Express coach 59211 damaged by fire many months ago has returned from repair by Plaxton and has since departed for pastures new. It is pictured below being prepared for reallocation on August 6th.

NEx SCO 59211 after repair 060811 M Crowe
A coach that has been off the road for many months following an engine fire is Oxford's 59211.
It returned to Oxford by August 6th looking strange with a white roof, only one other seen is an 06 plate Volvo
and has since been loaned to West Ham depot for Olympic work.

Some of you may have seen this coach around London?  Picture by Malcolm Crowe.

Also loaned to West Ham is Enviro 300, 22764 caught in the distance by the camera of Gavin Francis on August 17th.

Hybrids on the 2, one leaving Oxford for Kidlington on the 2A and one arriving in Oxford on the 2D.
The 2D serves Oxford airport, a new departure for SC. Pictures by Gavin Francis.

Hybrid 12020 works the 8 to Barton, the SC  service now having been joined with the Oxford Bus service, all workings being nr 8 s.
Picture by Malcolm Crowe on august 24th 2011.

Branding can mean that a bus seemingly works the wrong route but this can happen for many reasons.
Here we see 15435, nominally based at Chippy working an S5 departure on August 10th and pictured by Gavin Francis.

Shortly to become the S4 and receive new buses the 59 Banbury-Oxford service, worked by Banbury depot provides Dart 33821
for this working on August 10th pictured by Gavin Francis. 


Richard Morgan writes "I met my daughter in Swindon on Sunday to celebrate her birthday and left the car at her friend's house in Toothill. Therefore I caught the 8 into town and look what was on it - yes, a 66 branded bus!"

22623 on the 8
66 branded M A N 22623 is seen on an 8 working in Swindon by Richard Morgan.


53618 in Oxford GG
The 4th August saw new Volvo 53618 working the X5 into Oxford and pictured by Gavin Francis.

Gary Seamarks writes "final pair from yesterday plus map plus transfers from Bedford 21/8 should see 18411-4 go to Fenstanton with 34141/60 Cambridge will take 18415/6, the tridents of course only arrived in the spring from Peterborough, take it these replaced by Enviros and the Darts are off route 125/6 lost on retender." 


Karl Oakley, Swindon writes "While on holiday in Cornwall I came across this in Looe coach park, afraid I didn't catch who operated it but thought you may be interested!"


Andy Churchill responded "News to hand of who does now own former Oxford Tube (L158LBW) and it is Pointmost (Girlings) of Plymouth, Devon. It has been there since March 2011 having been sold by Stagecoach North West to Dealer Lister , Bolton."

Ken MacKenzie writes "Your vehicle is in Devon......

Pointmost {Girlings}, Plymouth ex Stagecoach North West (CA) 52023 3/11
L158 LBW      Vo      B10M-62 YV31M2B11RA040732       Je       23333  C49FT 4/94  (ex 630 DYE, L158 LBW, WLT 908, L158 LBW) was new to Oxford Tube.



I can advise that the coach involved in an incident some months ago at junction 7 on the M40, 50226, has returned from Van Hool to Oxford looking resplendent in a new coat of paint and freshly applied branding. It looks very smart indeed.

50201, 50212 and 50226 all seen recently in London by Gavin Francis.

50222 with new rear window.
Looking somewhat strange 50222 had just received a new back window when this picture was taken on August 20th 2011 by Malcolm Crowe.

50223 at Thornhill  50223
Tube 50223 is seen on two workings, one the 31 to Wantage, a weekday service at 0625 from The High
and later on a London working at Thornhill. Pictures by Malcolm Crowe.

SCO 50226 Faringdon St-Holborn Viaduct 140811 M Crowe
When next year comes and The Olympics are in full swing diversions to reach VCS will come into force. A trial day was run on August 14th
when all but two Tube services terminated at Marble Arch. The two which did not were "park-ups" at Sammy's and these were diverted via
The City, Waterloo and Vauxhall to reach Victoria.
Here we see 50226 on Faringdon St just past the Holborn Viaduct in a picture taken by Malcolm Crowe.
I think this must be the first time a Tube has been in the location, certainly in recent years?


Details of the Megabus Sleeper service from London to Glasgow can be found under Jottings below. 

Ray Ramsey writes "HOOKWAYS have folded today (5/8/11). Megabus Exeter to London had to be covered by SOUTH WEST today."

I am now aware that Berry's of Taunton are covering some Megabus diagrams into victoria in place using tri-axles. (see picture below)

Megabus - Berrys FJ07VLV 010811 Peter-Megabus
Berry's have now taken over serving Megabus on services previously provided by Hookways. Here their tri-axle FJ07VLV is seen
in Bulleid Way on August 1st in a picture taken by Megabus controller, Peter.

Freestones KX07HDJ with Megabus rear bradning on Noriwch-London service 270711 M Atkinson
Another contracted operator for Megabus now has their white coach bearing a super rear for Megabus.
Freestones KX07HDJ with Megabus rear branding on the Norwich-London service on July 27th by Mark Atkinson.

SC 54010 r M11 note free WiFi 240811 G Francis
SC 54010 inbound to London on the M11 rounds the Bag O'Nails corner and we can just see new branding regarding free Wi-Fi on board.

Picture by Gavin Francis on august 24th 2011.

54003, CN07BAA makes ready for departure to Bristol on august 10th - picture by Gavin Francis.

Megabus still has some elderly Volvos in service including 52645 seen here beside 50226 in Sammy's on August 14th by Malcolm Crowe.

50228 is the subject of these two pictures when it was the main service coach on the 2345 departure northbound.
It had a full load, in spite of 24 passengers transferring to the first Megabus sleeper service.
Your Editor can be seen with camera in action.
These pictures by Gavin Francis on 8th August.

When loadings are heavy a trailer is sued by the Astromegas. Picture by Gavin Francis.



Swanbrook still operates the 853 into Oxford and the coach below was caught in the lens of Gavin Francis on August 24th .

As mentioned under Oxford Bus we understand that TT has two ex Oxford Tridents. We have not seen these in Oxford but wonder what route they are operating?


We have featured this bus at Victoria in past issues but this time Gavin Francis caught up with Scania 351 at Hyde Park Corner heading for Hatfield on August 17th.

TigerLine UXI1377 WYC T3 050811 G Francis
Woottens TigerLine UXI1377 operates a T3 working from Wycombe to Risboro' on August 5th and pictured by Gavin Francis.


Stagecoach services running on world's longest buswayJump to top navigation Jump to site services


  • £3m luxury bus fleet powered by 100% biofuel with 80% less carbon emissions
  • Hi-tech vehicles feature leather seats, free Wi-Fi, real time information and air chill
  • Customers have access to fast, frequent services and smartcard ticketing options

Stagecoach is running services on the world's longest busway after the successful opening of the multi-million-pound public transport link.

The revolutionary new link offers a reliable, fast and frequent service seven days a week between Huntingdon, St Ives and Cambridge. It gives residents a high quality alternative to the long queues and uncertain journey times on the notoriously congested A14.

The Busway, the longest track of its kind in the world, is expected to attract around 3.5 million trips a year.

It includes two new park and ride sites at St Ives and Longstanton with spaces for hundreds of cars, and covered cycle parking. The shorter southern section connects Cambridge Railway Station, Addenbrooke's Hospital and Trumpington park and ride with a completely traffic-free link.

Stagecoach, one of two operators providing services on The Busway, is using a £3m fleet of 20 luxury buses that have been fitted with small rubber guide wheels.

The greener Stagecoach buses run on 100% biofuel and produce up to 80% less carbon emissions than vehicles using conventional diesel. All of the specially-branded vehicles are equipped with leather seats, air chill, real time information, and Wi-Fi to enable passengers to access email and the internet on the move.

Andy Campbell, Managing Director for Stagecoach in Cambridge, said: "The Busway is a visionary project. We believe that our luxury buses, with free wi-fi internet access, will encourage more people out of their cars and on to the route. I am pleased to see so many people trying out the new system, which provides a quick and smooth journey."

Passengers using Stagecoach services in Cambridge already have access to a smart ticketing scheme with thousands of customers now using StagecoachSmart travel cards on buses in the area.

Busway passengers can also enjoy smarter travel through the Busway multi-operator Smartcard, which is accepted by Stagecoach and the other guided busway operator, Whippet. Full details are available online at www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk.

The dedicated track for guided buses will mean passengers can travel by public transport between St Ives park and ride and the Science Park in Cambridge in just 20 minutes.

Ian Bates, Cambridgeshire County Council's Cabinet Member Growth and Planning, said: "I was very pleased to see the Busway open as it will raise the bar for other public transport schemes in the future and is an asset for Cambridgeshire communities to enjoy. Being able to get on a bus in Huntingdon or St Ives and bypass the congestion on the notorious A14 is fantastic. This route is all about giving people a reliable and green alternative to using the car."

I am delighted to be able to include a number of pictures sent in by readers. It looks as if it has been very worthwhile waiting for.

Pictures from Gary Seamarks.

A map of the new services.

Part of the new infrastructure at Trumpington.

These pictures give some idea of the new set up and workings.

A second world war memento on one of the station platforms.

The "no hands" look a little strange at first. What an excellent way to use an old railway track.
I believe that the costs are lower than reinstating a railway. The buses also have some flexibility.

ANDREW WEBB writes "Cambridge's long awaited guided bus system "The Busway" finally (and quietly) opened for service on 7 August. A visit on 8 August, the first day of full weekday service, found large loads being carried, even in the middle of the day. The service is advertised as running at least every 10 minutes over the core guided section, although gaps and bunching were evident, probably only to be expected on a new service such as this.

A large part of the guided route follows the track bed of the Cambridge - St Ives railway line. Go Whippet operates one service on the route using Plaxton Centro Volvo B7RLEs, one of which is seen passing the old platform of Oakington station.

On the guided section buses stop at purpose built stations, complete with platforms to give a level access to buses, ticket machines and real time information screens. Oakington station is a typical example, with a Stagecoach Scania passing en route to Cambridge with a service from Huntingdon.

The third service along the route is also operated by Stagecoach, this one requiring the use of single deckers due to height restrictions on the second guided section to Trumpington. Stagecoach have Wright Volvos such as this example passing the former station building at Histon & Impington."

SC East 15462 at OAKINGTON STATION 080811 A Webb
SC East 15462 at OAKINGTON STATION on August 8th 2011 by Andrew Webb.

Whippet AE59EHP at OAKINGTON Station 080811 A Webb
Whippet AE59EHP at OAKINGTON Station on August 8th by Andrew Webb.

SC East 21222 at Histon and Impington 080811 A Webb
SC East 21222 at Histon and Impington on August 8th 2011 by Andrew Webb.

Geoff Amos closes down 


Geoff Amos Coaches of Eydon, Northants have unexpectedly closed down.

Services operated as normal yesterday but gates where locked today.

There main Service, the GA01 between Banbury and Rugby did not operate today but Northamptonshire CC have ceased the contract for Stagecoach in Oxfordshire/Midland to operate commercially from Saturday the 6th of August on a commercial basis. CC have ceased the contract for Stagecoach in Oxfordshire/Midland to operate commercially from Saturday the 6th of August on a commercial basis.

Geoff Amos where a long established operator, operating MAN/MCV Evolutions on NCC GA01 Service as well as numerous school contracts using ex Isle of Man Olympians and Sideral/Mistral Coaches.

Some of the fleet in pictures by Richard Sharman. 

Banbury Dart 34467 is seen on a GA01 working on August 26th by Richard Sharman

Jay Houlden writes "As readers may know Geoff Amos, unfortunately ceased trading on the eve of Thursday 4th August. From Saturday 6th August, Stagecoach's Banbury and Rugby Depots took over Routes GA01/2 on behalf of Geoff Amos. When i sampled the route on Tuesday, Banbury had 34468 and 34469 out and Rugby had 34497 and 34643. To compensate that Banbury put 31853 and another ALX200 on the 59."

Photos of 34497 and 34643 in Rugby.

Allan Field also sent pictures for the first day of operation by Stagecoach.

Barry sent some pictures of Amos operations taken shortly before the demise of this company.

Stagecoach to trial UK's first budget sleeper coach service

Sir Brian Souter tries out a bunk for size!


  • Overnight megabus.com service with beds to run between Glasgow and London
  • New service offers budget fares, free Wi-Fi, toilets and on-board refreshments

Stagecoach Group is to trial the UK’s first budget sleeper coach service between Glasgow and London from next month.

The new pilot service, operated by market-leading budget coach provider megabus.com, will offer passengers their own berth as well as a standard seat for greater comfort during their journey.

Passengers will have access to a toilet, free Wi-Fi, on-board refreshments and a complimentary overnight pack containing a toothbrush, toothpaste, a bottle of water, an eye mask and a luggage label. Each berth has a reading light and curtain for extra privacy, as well as a duvet, pillow and blanket.

Fares on the new service, which is being operated with three specially-refurbished articulated coaches fitted with 24 berths and seats, will range from £1 to £40*.

The coaches have been safety certified by VOSA and are fitted with CCTV. For additional safety and security, each berth is equipped with a button to alert the driver in the event of an emergency. The vehicles also meet Transport for London’s new Low Emissions Zone (LEV) requirements which come into force in the capital in January 2012.

From next month, customers purchasing tickets online for the existing overnight megabus.com services between Glasgow and London will be given the opportunity to upgrade to the new sleeper service.

Bookings for the sleeper coach can be made from 5 September by visiting www.megabus.com. The service will operate seven nights a week to the following timetable:

  • Depart Glasgow at 23:15 and arrive in London at 07:20
  • Depart London at 23.59 and arrive in Glasgow at 08:05

Stagecoach Group Chief Executive, Sir Brian Souter, said: “Travelling overnight is a great way to save time, and we’ve already seen growing demand for our night-time megabus.com journeys. The new sleeper services will offer extra comfort and facilities, but still at excellent value for money prices.

“We’ve always been at the forefront of innovative ways to make public transport more attractive and convenient for people. We believe the best way to find out if it’s a service our customers want is by offering them the chance to try it out for real. Travelling direct from city centre to city centre beats the hassle of a red-eye flight from an airport and is a greener, smarter way to travel.”

megabus.com will be running passenger trials of the sleeper service during August before the first scheduled services go live.

megabus.com was launched in the UK in 2003 and revolutionised coach travel by offering fares from just £1* via a simple online booking system. Almost three million passengers now use megabus.com services in the UK every year, travelling between more than 60 towns and cities across the country.

In 2006, Stagecoach launched megabus.com in North America where it has now been used by more than 10 million passengers.

The coaches involved in the sleeper service are: 


One is a Jonckheere Mistral on a Volvo B10MA articulated chassis and the other two are Jonckheere Modulos on Volvo B10MA articulated chassis.

Gavin Francis and myself went down to Victoria to witness the first northbound departure on Sunday evening, August 7th 2011 and we enjoyed excellent cooperation from Megabus controllers and staff on duty that evening. 24 passengers were offered the opportunity to sample the service which it is hoped will start in late September.

These pictures by Gavin Francis show 50162 arriving to operate the service, on stand 10 and loading luggage.
The toilet is in the rear part of the coach.

These pictures by Malcolm Crowe show the interior including the bunks, 18 in front and 6 in the back plus the tea/coffee station for passengers.

Ready for loading 50162 and crew wait their time in Bulleid Way and then we see the first northbound departure leaving VCS.

To the best of my knowledge this is the first time since the summer of 1929 that anyone has tried a full sleeper coach service in the U.K. The first was operated by Land Liners Ltd of Edgware who used two of the Guy FCXs bodied by Strachans shown below between London and Manchester. These coaches were 30ft long and carried 21 passengers in 2 or 4 berth compartments with 10 berths downstairs and eleven upstairs plus a kitchen on the lower deck which prepared breakfast. Prices were 15/6 (77.5p) single and 30/- (£1.50) return.

The downfall of that service was the low fares and limited use of the coaches and the company faded away very quickly.

With thanks to Vintage Bus Album edited by Ken Blacker.

Philip Brown to retire
The Senior Traffic Commissioner and the Traffic Commissioner for the South Eastern and Metropolitan Traffic Area, Philip Brown, will retire with effect from 24 October, the Department for Transport (DfT) announced last Tuesday.

Philip Brown is currently on “special leave” and Beverley Bell is acting as Deputy Senior Traffic Commissioner.

Beverley Bell will continue in this role pending the appointment of the next Senior Traffic Commissioner, says the DfT

The Department “has arrangements in place to ensure Traffic Commissioner duties are fulfilled in the South East until a new full-time Commissioner is recruited.” 

Arriva in Malta

From Ian Brown, Hemel. 

There can`t be a resident or visitor in Malta who hasn`t heard of the name ARRIVA. Arriva is the name that everyone in Malta currently loves to hate. Let me explain. I live in Hertfordshire UK, deep in Arriva The Shires territory. I also happen to live – some of the time – in Malta, deep in the new Arriva Malta territory.

The summer months in Malta have provided a bus enthusiast’s dream! You see, generations of Malta`s old buses came to end on the evening of 3rd July. Changing from the old to the new has proved easier said than done. The local `Times of Malta` newspaper - nicknamed by one wag as the `Arriva Times of Malta` –has carried wall to wall coverage of the Great Event. Every day, a picture and story of Arriva`s  troubles – bendies unable to bend, drivers lost, vehicles broken down, over-heating buses, queues waiting for the non-arrival of an Arriva. An entire page of readers’ gripes over Arriva`s `incompetence` appeared in one particular edition. Even a double page spread interview with Keith Bastow, the Englishman running Arriva out there.  Malta television carried endless stories of the Great Event. All in all a kind of daily dose of `Oxford and Chiltern Bus Pages`. Fellow enthuisiasts, you couldn`t ask for more!

So the days of the old Malta bus have ended. No more dangerously over-loaded buses. The notice in the front, on the  inside of the bus, would say  `30 standees`. No matter, 65 appeared quite acceptable. No matter that the door was kept open whilst the bus was moving…just waiting for some of the 65 to fall out. No matter that the driver took money from passengers whilst driving. No matter that there was no destination board on the bus, just a number stuck to the screen.

Come the morning of 4th July, along came Arriva with their boring buses all looking – just about – the same. The sign inside the bus says `39 standees`, so the driver keeps to it. The driver doesn`t move off until the doors are shut. The roar of the air-conditioning protects us from the 90+ heat outside and from close contact with umpteen sweaty bodies. The driver, dressed in a white short sleeve shirt, Arriva tie, epaulettes, dark trousers and black shoes gives an air of discipline and confidence. No more stopping in the middle of the road to drop off passengers like the old days. Now we pull up kerbside. The bus has a destination for all to see. The buses are clean, airy, spacious, and cool and you have a seat to yourself. So the local press and population keep on and on about Arriva – `incompetent`, `amateurish`, bring back the old buses.

The truth lies somewhere between. Arriva recruited 240 new drivers. For some reason, on the first day of operations, about 180 failed to turn up. Arrive was left with a massive dose of egg on its face. There was even a story in the Times that one Maltese driver had, without permission, taken a bendy home with him! The press and the locals had a field day. In my view Transport Malta (a TfL type organisation) must take a large chunk of the blame. They planned the routes and timetables. Nobody appears to blame them. As an independent, non-professional observer, let me make some points. Many of the Arriva vehicles in the early days were in use without destination displays (software problems, apparently), there were lengthy delays (3 bendies queuing for one bus stop, for example), route-branded vehicles way off their route, thus causing confusions to passengers.

So as an emergency stop-gap, Arriva flew out from UK to Malta over 100 of their British drivers to help out. From what I saw, they deserve a large pat on the back. Imagine it; you fly out to foreign country at a few hours notice. Somewhere you`ve never been to before and know little about the place. The temperatures are in the 90s. They use Euros and cents, not pounds and pence. Malta has such strangely named places as Xemxija  (“Shem-she-a”) or Ta`Xbiex (“Tarsh-bee-esh”). They drive on the left as in UK, but with much less discipline.

It was very good to see those Arriva Brits, smartly dressed in their white shirts and ties driving those Kings Longs and bendies. Most of them had with them a `pilot` to guide them through Malta`s crowded and narrow roads.

Despite the Maltese refusing to believe that things will eventually come good, the arrival of Arriva will put Malta a road passenger transport system into some order and hopefully reduce the number of cars of the Maltese roads.

Finally, when you`re in Malta look carefully and you`ll see something never seen before 4th July – female bus drivers !

Ian Brown, Hertfordshire. 

A bendy arriving at Gozo ferry terminal.

The new services

Solo 267 on route 130. 

Chris Maxfield kindly provided a large number of pictures of the latest buses operating in Malta. I have selected a representative group for readers.

Readers can see the route branding being used.

Ex London bendis. Seems the destination displays are rather poor and do not photograph well.

The Solo is on loan from Derby and even carries advertising appropriate to that location!!

More short term loans.

Route branding revealed.

Seems all did not go well with the launch and readers may like to refer to Buses magazine for September who cover matters in depth.

Stagecoach sells in Manchester 

Stagecoach has sold its subsidiary, Stagecoach Metrolink Ltd (SML), to RATP Dev UK.

SML operates and maintains the Manchester Metrolink tram network under a 10-year contract with Transport for Greater Manchester (formerly, GMPTE) to July 2017. The sale price has not been disclosed, but SML’s gross assets are £16.2m.

RATP Dev UK is a new subsidiary of the French operator, which owns Yellow Buses (Bournemouth), London United and sightseeing operation the Bath Bus Company.

The sale relates only to SML. Stagecoach says it retains its Sheffield tram operations and “is not engaged in any discussions regarding a sale of the Sheffield tram operations.” It also retains its existing Manchester bus operations.

Go-Ahead in another take-over 

Go-South Coast have just taken over Coach House Travel, Dorchester.....this being related to the expansion into the Dorset area due to the large amount of contract gains, Go-South Coast will soon be the largest Coach Operator on the South Coast, in fact the groups coaching activity spreads from Plymouth to Wiltshire via the Isle of Wight!, if you take into account Plymouth City Coach, Brighton & Hove's coaching unit etc.  

Parking in London by Martin White

Announced in the trade Magazines this week is that an additional 100 coach parking spaces have been made available in joint project between Tfl & The CPT involving some of London's Bus operators who have made the spaces available in various Garages across London, This is Excellent news for coach operators and off course drivers who will be able to make use of the facilities available:

Companies & Garages offering Spaces: 

Abellio London : Battersea & Twickenham

CT Plus : Ash Grove

London United : Fulwell - Hounslow Heath - Park Royal - Shepherds Bush -

Stamford Brook - Twickenham.

London Sovereign : Edgware

Stagecoach London : Barking - Leyton - Upton Park - West Ham - Catford - Plumstead.

That’s hope over time this is expanded and Go-Ahead London & Arriva join in along with Metroline. 

Spaces have to be booked in advance. 

Its a pity that a joint project partnership like this cant be expanded into other towns & cities were Coach Parking is premium especially in High Season or Events. 

It would bring in extra revenue for the operators who have the spaces available during the day when most of their fleets are in service. 

A scheme similar to this has been in operation in Eastbourne for some years now at the Birch Road depot of what is now Stagecoach Eastbourne.

Visiting day coaches can park in the depot and drivers can use the Facilities available, in fact when coaches drop their passengers by the set down/ pick up point by Eastbourne pier a Coach steward takes the coach details and then allocates you a pick up slot time with only 15 minutes waiting allowed and then hands you a list of available day parking spaces: a limited few further along the sea front on the hill or at the Birch Road depot.

Overnight parking for coaches on extended tours or one night parking is also available as well as at one time NX ops Crawley used to use it as an O/Stn for the 024 as they had two drivers based in Eastbourne & First Devon & Cornwall used to park the coach there of the 315 i suspect that Parks (Trathens) who now operate the 315 use it as well.

The only other thing with using out of town parking at bus depots is that if your there has a driver on an extended day trip your trapped at the depot unless you make your own way back to town, With this in mind i think that if you use a bus depot then some sort of Voucher either for a free return journey or a discounted return journey could be offered to drivers, In London this would be difficult due to Tfl having the upper hand over bus routes but could come up with something. 

Bedfordshire update - including the VT99

Stagecoach used coaches in Virgin livery but it is being phased out as Virgin have for some time ceased to provide any finance. The VT on the 99 has also been phased out.

From late August there are to be extra journeys early and late on the re-numbered S1 (to81) Bedford to Luton before and after 99 operations thus avoiding existing empty operations.

Grant-Palmer have gained , under tendering most of the north-Beds revamped rural routes currently provided by Stagecoach East and Cedar Coaches.

East are to revise their Bedford Urban network slightly and reduce most frequencies to every 20 mins but provide evening services to 2330 hrs on most corridors. These were withdrawn around 10 years ago when Beds.C.C subsidies were cut.

Interesting , however , is that Cedar , having lost virtually all there bus service work , have decided to operate two of their traditional routes , that they won from United Counties in 1986, commercially against the Grant Palmer tendered routes, although Cedar will run them on existing routes whereas GP are serving the particular villages of Widen, Renhold, Ravensden, Salph End, Thurleigh & Riseley. Shortly after this decision was taken by Cedars their long serving proprietor Eric Reid passed away, a sad event. He had a long-running heart condition and perhaps the trauma may have played a part.

Volvo 52485 at Luton Airport on July 23rd by Gavin Francis.

Bedford Borough Revisions from Gary Seamarks 

Bedford Borough Revisions from 21 Aug, its interesting to note they start two weeks before schools go back. Timetables for all were on Bedford Boroughs Website in Mid July so I will not go into full timing details here. A new Borough Timetable book is also promised for late August.

Both commercial and tendered services have revisions from this date.


The biggest change sees a return to most town routes after 20.00 for the first time since 2003, most run hourly up to about 22.30, including park and ride. Several other minor changes are taking place on town routes, with routes revised to involve less right hand turns onto major roads. Service 10 introduced last year is withdrawn due to poor passenger numbers, but a new route 10 has been introduced from parts of other routes recast. The new village of Great Denham, off the Northampton Road has also been included on route 8 every 20 minutes, prior to May it was part of Arriva’s route 1 to Milton Keynes. In general most routes have increased headways with 10 minute frequencies now every 12, and 15 now every 20. The one exception is Park and ride which has gone to a fixed 12 minute from every 15 off peak and 10 peak, the off peak extension to the station is also withdrawn, covered by the 40/1, but for the first time it now serves the Bus Station.

X5 has had timing alterations but the major changes are extended layovers at both ends and a diversion via Buckingham Town Centre instead of Tesco’s, an additional coach is now needed, no change to frequencies.

M50 Kettering was renumbered to 50 with slight revisions in July, this is the only Stagecoach route not operated by Bedford/Biggleswade in the borough. The shorts to Oakley remain as route 51 but are cut to every 30 minutes from 20.

M3 to Sandy/ Biggleswade is now 73 and runs every 30 minutes

M4 to Biggleswade is now 74 and still hourly.

M1/2 to Hitchin have been renumbered to 71/2 with slight changes to times, but still both hourly.

S1 to Luton is now 81 and has 2 additional journeys, am southbound and pm northbound operated by coaches off the 99 (MK- Luton Airport) that in the past ran dead over this section.

J2 to Flitwick is now route 42, the same as Grant Palmer’s tendered service to Toddington that mirrors it most of the way. Slight timing tweaks have seen a better headway provided by tickets are not interchangeable.

V1 to Wootton and Cranfield have been split as 52/3.

The 52 being the full run to Cranfield hourly, but running direct to Marston via the old A421 and saving about 15 minutes into the bargain. Route 53 remains the same as the old V1 shorts to Wootton every 30 minutes.

Routes 41 Northampton and 40 Milton Keynes were revised in May in the MK changes, with the Northampton diverted via Olney, and renumbered from P1. Route 40 is the old Arriva route to MK via the villages. Both routes are hourly and are now diverted past Midland Station in Bedford.

Stagecoach has also taken this time to tidy up bay use in the bus station.

It’s unknown at present how duties will work out, the Luton for example cannot be worked by two buses at present as arrival and departure at Bedford is the same time. Routes 42 and 74 look like they continue to interwork, as does 71-3.

Tendered routes

125/6 Bedford – Rushden via Villages, both hourly via different villages. Have been retendered and passed to Grant Palmer.

Route 160/5 Schooldays only Bedford – Woburn – Leighton Buzzard 2 return trips has been withdrawn, as its a Central Beds Contract no further details are know on replacement at present.

Route 169 Town – Marsh Leys continues as now but with slight revisions.


Route 42 Bedford- Ampthill- Toddington (Central Beds Contract)

Route 44 Bedford – Wixams-Clophill (Central Beds Contract)

Route 68 Bedford – Stewartby (Bedford Borough Contract)

All remain unchanged, as does Cedars routes to the North East of the County.


The big new changes have occurred in a new North Beds network set up and operated by Grant Palmer, its suggested with low-floor Darts from a new base North of Bedford. Painted in a Purple and white livery, which seems the boroughs new colours for transport.

25 - Bedford Bus Station – Bedford Rail Station – Sainsbury’s Clapham Road – Oakley – Pavenham/Stevington – Carlton – Harrold – (Odell – Sharnbrook) basic hourly with alternate departures via Pavenham/Stevington. This route connects at Harrold with the 26.

26 – Rushden Skinners Hill – Rushden ASDA – Wymington – Souldrop – Sharnbrook – Odell – Harrold – Hinwick – Podington – Wymington – Rushden, basic hourly with an hour’s lunch break, this route connects at Harrold with the 25.

27 – Bedford – Cardington Rd – Willington Loop – Great Barford – Renhold – Wilden – Ravensden – Salph End – Norse Road – Goldington Green – Bedford, basic hourly that operates in both directions round the loop

28 - Bedford – Ravensden – Colmworth – Bushmead – Little Staughton – Pertenhall – Kimbolton – Tillbrook – Lower Dean – Swineshead – Riseley – Keysoe – Bolnhurst – Colmworth – Ravensden – Bedford, 9 journeys that operate in both directions round the loop

29 – Pavenham – Felmersham – Sharnbrook – Bletsoe – Thurleigh – Bolnhurst – Little Staughton – Bushmead – Colmworth – Honeydon – Staploe – Duloe – St Neots

Three return journeys that operate within the school hours

Most of these routes seem to centre on Sharnbrook Upper School at the start and end of the schoolday and have different patterns on school and non-schooldays. All routes operate Mon-Sat only, with most journeys seeming to cater or leisure as opposed to commuter traffic. These routes will also see Grant Palmer operate in Northants and Cambs for the first time and regain some work lost on retender/revisions in Central Beds and MK. 

Blackpool update from Geoff Cunliffe 

I have managed to get a photo of the new doors on the trams which will enable them to operate on the new system. Report herewith.
Future proofing the trams
Much is being made by sentimentalists, including me, that the traditional Blackpool tramway system will close for ever on Sunday 6th November to be replaced, from Easter 2012, by a new, Light Rail, Supertram system operated by sixteen swish Bombardier trams which are a few inches wider than the old ones. However, to satisfy the nostalgic demands of many, some of the old trams will form a Heritage fleet which will be intermixed with the new trams when circumstances allow. The new trams will feature level boarding from raised platforms at each stop to meet the requirements of the DDA. Heritage trams which do not permit this will be subject to the Twelve Day Rule, meaning that they can only operate for twelve days in any year. To overcome this, a number of the Heritage fleet are being fitted with new entrances. Two photographs show Millennium class car 707, the Coral Island overall advertisement tram, at Manchester Square last autumn, with the original style of conductor operated, manual, folding door then the revised doorway on Millennium class car 709, the Sealife Centre tram photographed by my wife Margaret as we flashed past it near South Pier this evening, This one now has extended, power operated, largely glass, plug doors and a entrance which is several inches wider to meet the new, elevated loading platforms at the stops. It was originally said that these conversions were ugly blisters on the sides of the trams. I must say I don’t think they are too bad and a price worth paying if some of the Heritage fleet can remain in service.

The revised arrangement on the older double deck trams with doors compatible with the new trams in operation. G Cunliffe.

707 in its latest advertising livery.  Geoff Cunliffe.

New tram ready! 

M&M Store has a Routemaster 

Andrew Webb writes "A new store for M&Ms (the chocolates) has opened in Leicester Square on the site of the former Swiss Centre. To promote the opening two buses have received all over adverts, one of which is Arriva's T102 seen at Elephant & Castle plying route 133, its usual home. Meanwhile, visitors to the store are greeted at the entrance by an archway formed from the remains of RML2561."


Rally News

305 route between High Wycombe and Uxbridge 

Peter Cartwright sent a few pictures from last Saturday. Some more showing Horn Hill, West Wycombe & Wooburn Common inter alia.


Neil Timberlake writes "The long-established 305 route between High Wycombe and Uxbridge, via Beaconsfield, Seer Green, the Chalfonts, and Gerrards Cross, came to an end on Saturday 23rd July 2011. From 25th July the route is re-numbered 580. (to be operated by Carousel. Ed.)

The 305 first appeared on Wednesday 3rd October 1934, as London Transport re-numbered and re-organised routes it had taken over from Amersham & District.

In due course the route, which at one time was double-decked, passed to London Country Bus Services Ltd., and eventually to Arriva the Shires. Most recently, the 305 was operated by Carousel Buses, having been re-tendered by Bucks County Council.

The very final journey, the 17.38 Uxbridge to High Wycombe departure on 23 July 2011, is seen arriving at High Wycombe, High Street, being operated by RK07 BNF, Carousel's Plaxton Primo-bodied Enterprise Bus."

Hungary by Marcus Lapthorn

Marcus Lapthorn writes "Spent a very enjoyable 5 days in Budapest, Hungary during July and I would recommend this trip to everyone as the public transport scene is extensive, very efficient and economical. Also it is only 2 hours away from Heathrow.

The public transport services are provided largely by electric vehicles - metro, trams, trolleybuses and trains. There are of course some diesel buses but they are in the minority it would seem, based upon our observations. One can purchase a weeks 'all services' ticket for a nominal sum and this makes getting around very easy indeed.

Budapest has a River & Ride service provided by the floating bus: www.riverride.com

Photos 737/8 are taken at the tram depot at Csoka Utca. As you can see they seem to have loads of spare trams and trolleys that are 'in reserve' for rush hour extra capacity.

Photo 739 show the wide roads that are able to provide adequate space for all modes of transport. Unlike in the UK motorists in Budapest do not seem to have difficulty avoiding the trams!

Photo 743 illustrates the excellent state of the tram pavements, landscaping and the feeling of space for everyone to move around.

The trolleybuses seem to be quite aged, whereas trams on some routes are very modern indeed.

Photo 820 was taken at an interchange with the metro. Below here is the access to the metro system and Nyugati rail station is one metro stop away.

Photo 822 shows the sleek lines of the most modern trams in service.

Photo 858. There are two companies providing open top tourist services. Purchase of a ticket is valid for 48 hours and includes a river trip too.

Photo 860 shows the interior of one of the modern tram sets which is comprised of several units. These tram cars are air conditioned and have both visual and spoken announcements in English at each tram stop!

I hope that this whets the appetite of your readers to also visit Budapest if they have not already been there.

Rally news 

Bristol Bus Rally at Brislington by Marcus Lapthorn

Marcus writes "Here are a few shots from Brislington, Bristol bus rally that took place on Sunday 14 August. Shots 923 and 931 show an interesting bus! It is a former Maidstone Corporation bus that was converted into a playbus and used in Manchester for 16 years! It is now being converted into a mobile home and has a satellite dish mounted to the rear upper deck!"




Gloucester Steam Fair by Gavin Francis

Gavin visited this event and sent some nice pictures.



Ian Gravestock writes "Here are my pictures - I hope there is enough definition to do something with them. Plus some details referring to them on a separate sheet.

Whilst I left Bucks for the North in 1962, I have indelible memories of my early bus interests. As a London Transport fan, I have a particular liking for AEC's and also remember enjoying the superb City of Oxford examples I used to see and ride, on the High Wycombe - Oxford service. 



1937 Leyland Cub C 37 with 20-seat Short Bros body. Worked out of Amersham Garage from 1944 until sold out of service 1954.
Seen at Penn by the Red Lion, working the 373 Penn - Beaconsfield - Holtspur route.

C 37 with unidentified RT decker from High Wycombe Garage working 362b High Wycombe - Hazlemere - Penn route.

1938 T 674 AEC Regal 10T10 from Windsor Garage having spent most of its life as a Greenline coach,
now shown at Uxbridge as a bus running the 458 route from Slough.

AEC Regent STL 2681 introduced in 1942, was assembled on a previously built but then 'unfrozen' chassis with a body from scrapped 1933 STL 275,
 used on route 353 at Amersham Garage, was withdrawn from service in October 1952.
Behind is 1950 Regent RT 3202 with Weymann body, used largely on Amersham's 305 route and sold in 1979.

Geoff Cunliffe’s Cobweb Corner

Part Three – South Midlands 

Those of you who have been following my delve in to my early colour slides will know that in the late 1950s, just as I was starting 35mm photography, I took several shots around the country when holidaying with my parents. In those days, before the motorways, we used to break the journey from Lancashire to the south coast in the south Midlands which gave me additional opportunities for photography and fostered my love of Gloucestershire and Oxfordshire which draws me back there to this day.

Cheltenham was a frequent base, with its red and cream fleet. By then it was run as a subsidiary of Bristol Omnibus Company and it was still a mix of Tilling & pre-Tilling machinery. I managed to photograph four of their fleet: 82, OHY 952, a KSW6G of 1952 (image 123) with standard ECW body, 69, HDG 445, a 1949 MCW bodied Albion Venturer CX19 (image 124) [HDG 448 is preserved], 95, WHY 946, a 1956 Bristol LD6G (image 126) and finally 64, HAD 491, a Weymann bodied 1947 AEC Regent (image 125).

Cheltenham seems to have always been served by independents pottering out into remote Cotswold villages. In the late 1950s, a very quick and incomplete survey found the following:

Miles, with a service to Guiting Power via East End, Whittington, Andoversford, Syreford, Sevenhampton, Brockhampton and Hawling.

Perritt, serving Hazleton, Compton Abdale, Shipton, Andoversford and Whittington.

Gillett, serving Winchcombe via Cleeve Hill.

Kearsey, with routes to (1) Ford & Guiting Power via Andoversford; (2) Alderton via Cleeve Estate, Woodmancote and Gotherington; (3) Stow-on-the-Wold, Moreton-in-Marsh and Andoversford; (4) Winchcombe via Cleeve Hill.


I photographed Miles’s 1950 OB, KAD 882 (image 116), Perritt’s new Duple bodied Bedford SBG (image 117), Kearsey’s smart 1957 lowbridge Park Royal bodied Regent V 79, TDF 657 (image 118) along with their former RTL133, 62, KGK 797 which originally had a Park Royal body (image 119), and 1954 Burlingham bodied Reliance 34, ODG 982 (image 121) and a further 1956 SBG of Gillett’s, SDD 461 (image 122). I missed Marchants & Pulhams, both of whom, I suspect, were around then. Today there is also Swanbrook and Bennetts from Gloucester operating the Arle Court Park & Ride (at least).

Besides these independents, I photographed Bristol L4116, KHW 636, a standard 1948 ECW bodied K5G with a lazy destination blind layout (image 115), All were taken at Cheltenham’s Royal Wells bus station.

Further east, a stop at Woodstock produced photographs of Midland Red coaches, led by 4218, UHA 218, a Willowbrook bodied C3 (image 155) and followed by 4775, 775 GHA, a C5 (image 150). Let me say I have never been a Midland Red expert, and if the classes are wrong, please feel free to correct me. This is where I also took a previously published shot of City of Oxford Regent 920 (image 102).

Westwards again to Stratford-upon-Avon where the original Stratford Blue was based. In those days, a polite request usually got you in to the depot, though it could be a bit dark and dingy. My first (enhanced) photograph shows, principally, 1956 Willowbrook bodied PD2/12 TNX 455 and one of those lovely Willowbrook bodied 1950 PS2/3s, JUE 351 rebodied by Northern Counties as double deckers in 1963 (image 104). A more sideways shot also shows Willowbrook dual purpose bodied Tiger Cub PSUC1/2 2743 AC of 1959 (image 197). In the yard at the side of the depot was sister Tiger Cub 2742 AC and 1948 all Leyland PD2/1 GUE 240 (image 198). As a Leyland man, I am fascinated that this Titan has a full set of drip rails above the top deck windows; contrast this with 1950 PD2/1 JUE 359 across the road in the former Stratford Bus Station where these have been removed from above the front and curved rear windows (image 195). Is it sad to get excited about such details?

Also running in to there was Midland Red. I found 3944, OHA 944, an S13 Mk II (image 149) and a couple of 1956 Carlyle bodied S14s, 4328 and 4557 (image 156). Didn’t they have Leyland Tiger Cub engines? On the coaching front at Stratford, I saw previously published Associated Motorways Black & White L6G 126, JDD 497, fitted with full-fronted Duple bodywork of 1949 (image 196).

The final centre for my south Midlands collection is Leamington, producing a further collection of BMMO vehicles. These included a Brush bodied S10, 3679, NHA 679 (image 151), D7 4757, 757 BHA (image 152) [look at the two period Austins in the picture], and 4054, SHA 454, an all Leyland PD2/20 class LD8 (image 154). It was for this Midland Red order that Leyland devised its radiator-concealing “tin front”. 

I trust these vintage photographs are of interest. I have a few more if our Editor thinks they have sufficient appeal?

Comments by readers on Geoff's work

Michael Wadman writes "I greatly enjoyed seeing Geoff Cunliffe’s photographs in the latest issue, and look forward to more in future issues. I’d just like to make a couple of points, if I may?

The blank slip board on the front of 1161 would, I suspect, when turned round, have said “Not in service for Bournemouth Corporation passengers”. This bewildering message was carried on the front of H&D buses in the Bournemouth area when operating on services that were not permitted to carry passengers locally within the area served by Bournemouth Corporation.

Regarding restrictions on vehicle acquisitions imposed by 1948 Transport Act, I’m not at all sure that it did. There were quite a few examples of non-Bristol / ECW vehicles being purchased by BTC companies. Doubtless the BTC frowned on this and would have required a good reason for not buying a Bristol / ECW product, but the legal restriction in the Act, as I understand it, was the other way: operators who were not part of the BTC were not allowed to buy Bristol or ECW products.

In the case of the Titans, according to the PSV Circle’s fleet history of Hants & Dorset, they were a diverted South African export order. They were the first batch of Highbridge buses to be purchased new by H&D for twenty years, so doubtless the H was very necessary as a warning to staff."

Web links of interest.

From Michael Penn - a collection to view 

You might like to know that I have now set up an online collection of photos taken in Beds, Bucks and  Herts during 1997.
There was a lot happening during this year.  LDT took over Lucketts of  Watford early in the year bringing in a motley collection of vehicles, the  buses ranging from Optare Citypacers 
to the rare Iveco Citybus, with various coaches and minibuses, many of them non-PSV including the Hertfordshire Dial-a-Ride ones.  Not long after, Checker Travel was acquired, again
bringing in various coaches and minibuses.  Not many of the acquired  vehicles received fleet livery during the year, those that survived long  enough being repainted into 
Arriva livery in subsequent years.  One exception  was an ex Checker Travel coach that was given a new orange and blue livery but with the onset of Arriva livery that was 
to remain unique.  Between  these two events the whole LDT fleet was renumbered.
During September Challenger Travel ceased operations (by then confined to Milton Keynes) but almost immediately LDT took over the name and Challenger's premises
in Sundon Park Road, Luton to start a new series of  services competing directly with Lutonian Buses.  For these 12 Mercedes  L608D minibuses in a lemon yellow livery 
were hired from Clydeside Buses  with two others coming from Crosville Wales later.  These vehicle suffered  severe vandalism on the night of October 30th/31st when the windows of 
most,  if not all, were smashed.  No services ran that morning but later in the day two vehicles were brought out of storage somewhere or other to maintain at  least a skeleton service.
One of these was one of the original Challenger Freight Rover Sherpas (D820 PUK) and the other was an LDT MCW Metrorider in allover white livery (E990 DNK).
Elsewhere in the region MK Metro started their  new yellow and blue fleet livery and a number of vehicles were acquired, including double decks. City of Oxford had also acquired
a number of secondhand vehicles for use at High Wycombe.  Sovereign had bought a number of new vehicles of various types and  had acquired some from Keighley and District
including Olympians that had been new to London Country.
There are also independents featured with some interesting vehicles from Red Rose.
Photos at:
I have also uploaded most of the photo collections I had with Fotopic to this new site:

Buses in the Landscape

Andrew Cowell writes "Please find attached some contenders for Buses in the Landscape. The first is in Derby outside the refurbished Roundhouse and the other three were taken in Northern Ireland. Hopefully the filenames are self-explanatory but please let me know if you would like any more details."

Kings_Ferry_-_Carrick-a-Rede_Rope_Bridge A Cowell
Kings Ferry @ Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge.

Plaxton_Primo_-_Giants_Causeway A Cowell
A Plaxton Primo @ Giants Causeway.

A Wright Solar in Londonderry.

Barry writes to send pictures with captions as quoted.

A Volvo B7 of First Somerset's Bath depot about to leave the Bristol suburbs near Longwell Green en route for the short run to Keynsham,
having ground its well round much of North Bristol.
(who remembers Radio Luxembourg 208 on a Sunday night - K E Y N S H A M!! Ed)

First Somerset Dart 42909 seen on the 267 Bath to Frome service,
having just passed under the old Somerset and Dorset rail line at Midford Viaduct, from which the photo was taken.

Seen at speed just south of Faringdon is Trident 18192 of Swindon depot.

Not strictly in the countryside but taken from the overbridge on the A4 Great West Road in Brentford as planes land in the evening gloom

Another shot from the Great West Road showing one of the fabulous Art Deco buildings on the Golden Mile in Brentford.
Now the offices of Carillion, it was built for the Pyrene Fire Extinguisher Co in 1930
and designed by Wallis, Gilbert and Partners, who also designed the Hoover Building and Victoria Coach Station among many other buildings.
The e400H of London United provides the modern design.


Some quite clever graphic-design concepts here from Iain MacKenzie

Pictures from Chiltern Blockade by Terry Wong Min

A few pictures from the area including some of the work being carried at High Wycombe Station and also a few pictures of the buses on the rail replacement...

From John Hammond

Some pictures from a recent holiday to the states

IMGP3659 - a LHD ADL E500 open topper in San Francisco

IMGP3520 - a City Sightseeing San Francisco Bluebird saloon, cut down to half open top at the Golden Gate view point.

IMGP3533 - An un id former London MCW Metrobus with City Sightseeing San Francisco

IMGP3568 - Former London MCW Metrobus BYX 310V with a similar bus behind.

IMGP3570 - Former Bristol Omnibus convertible open top Leyland Olympian A812 THW overtakes a stranded Muni cable car.

IMGP3580 - former Lothian A724 YFS with San Francisco deluxe.

IMGP3581 - former London MCW BYX 314V with City Sightseeing.

IMGP3588 - originally (B897 UAS)

IMGP3592 - A LHD ADL E500 open topper

IMGP3593 - Two ex UK Olympians and a SF Ladder fire tender

IMGP3602 - A LHD ADL E500 open topper

IMGP3438 - a preserved Alabama Birmingham Electric tram in San Francisco.

IMGP3572 - A 'Muni' Neoplan AN240 on Cablecar replacement overtakes a stranded cable car in SF.

IMGP3576 - A Muni Neoplan AN260 artic

IMGP3600 - Another Muni Neoplan AN240 on Cablecar replacement services

IMGP3608 -

IMGP3656 - A muni tram in Kansas City railway livery

IMGP3661 - A Van Hool coach of Amtrak California

IMGP3662 - Muni 8527, an Orion Bus VII built to 30ft length, hybrid electric power and used to the 39 between Fisherman's Wharf and Coit Tower.

IMGP3706 - Muni Neoplan buses return to Kirkland depot out of service.

Some from Nevada and Arizona


IMGP4084 - RTC Nevada Enviro 500 222 in downtown Las Vegas

IMGP4086 - RTC 013 - one of a batch of hybrid Wright Streetcars. This example in a livery for M&M's world

IMGP3809 - Y Travel LLC 2281, one of several Van Hool Astromega coaches used on excursions to the Grand Canyon, seen here on the Arizona side of the Hoover Dam.

IMGP3928 - An MCI J-series also Y Travel operates an internal shuttle at the Grand Canyon visitor centre

IMGP3950 - as above

IMGP3952 - An MCI D-series with Y Travel.

IMGP4022 - M&M's world 013 again, this time on the Vegas Strip.

Two shots of San Francisco cable cars, including one on a turning circle at Fishermans Wharf.

Here Y Travel 2381, a Van Hool Astromega climbs up into the Arizona side of the Hoover Dam on the Colorado river.

Pictures from the U.K.

Applegates SF07YTT ex Parks in London 290711 G Francis
Applegates SF07YTT ex Parks in Oxford by Beaumont Street on July 29th by Gavin Francis

New Enviro 400s on service 30 now run by First iso Stagecoach seen at Marble Arch on August 17th - Gavin Francis.

Not much longer now until the bendi bus disappears from the streets of London. London Central MAL57 works on the 436 on August 10th.
Picture by Gavin Francis.

London United TLA26 in red and grey on 94 Marble Arch 170811 G Francis
London United TLA26 in red and grey on 94 at Marble Arch on 17th August by Gavin Francis

New buses for Metroline with Enviro 200  DE1165 on route 274 at Marble Arch on August 17th by Gavin Francis.

Lynx RML2349 at Asda Wycombe 130811 G Francis
Well, who likes the bus? - Lynx RML2349 at Asda Wycombe on August 13th by Gavin Francis.

Metroline TE909 Google overall 100811 G Francis
Metroline TE909 with Google overall advertising now appearing on a number of London buses. Seen on August 10th by Gavin Francis.

Royal Blue 1250 osr Binders Yard 050811 G Francis
Royal Blue 1250 at Binders Yard on August 5th by Gavin Francis.

Western National 1943 Binders Yard 050811 G Francis
Western National 1943 at Binders Yard on August 5th by Gavin Francis

Routemasters at Binders Yard on August 5th by Gavin Francis

Trainer bus VP18 PLG Victoria 010811 G Francis
Trainer bus VP18 PLG at Victoria on August 1st by Gavin Francis.

Clarkes BV10ZKM BPR LON 100811 M Crowe
Clarkes Executive BV10ZKM near Buckingham Palace on August 10th by Malcolm Crowe.

Johnsons on tour at Oxford Oxpens, a nice Volvo B7R on August 24th by Malcolm Crowe.

Rose Reisen Borgentreich at Oxpens 240811 M Crowe
When I was in the RAF in Germany I served for 12 months on RAF Borgentreich, I never thought I would see this name again some 50 years later!!
Oxpens last week was host to the Rose Reisen Coach from of all places, Borgentreich. Picture by Malcolm Crowe.

Now here's a surprise, M&M Coaches appear to be using Arriva Cressex for their depot??

I was surprised to find that the Army coaches used in London have Plaxtons as their legal owner?? I wonder why?