A quieter week for me but still with good contributions from readers. I planned to get out on Friday or Saturday but the weather was against me. As the expression goes, All Quiet on the Western Front!

Gavin Francis has sent some pictures from Florida.

JET SET LINE 175 at BAHAMA BAY RESORT on March 2nd by Gavin Francis.

BLISS CHARTERS 140 at BAHAMA BAY RESORT on March 2nd by Gavin Francis. Not quite the Bliss travel which used to be in Sammy's!!!

LYNX 199-415 on International Drive, Orlando the date was February 28th by Gavin Francis. I love the bike racks on these US buses.

A further selection of pictures from our area by Paul Bateson

Oxford and Thames Valley feature this week with more to come from South Midland and London Transport.

How nice it was when buses had fleet numbers corresponding with the registration numbers, now sadly a thing of the past.
What a fine sight these COMS buses make in Gloucester Green on July 1st 1968 by Paul Bateson.

well some may prefer the mini-skirted young lady but Bristol LH 213 on the Newbury service looks quite fresh and ready for the journey.
Its June 8th 1970 and VMO233H is seen in Gloucester Green in this picture by Paul Bateson.

Bristol LL5G 630 GJB268 is seen in the parking area of the old old bus station in High Wycombe on September 22nd 1968 by Paul Bateson.
The line from Paddington or Marylebone runs on the embankment behind.

The driver is most interested in his newspaper whilst he takes a break from the Omnibus Society trip on September 22nd 1968.
Bristol FLF6B is seen waiting for the group to rejoin and progress on their trip. Picture by Paul Bateson.

Maidenhead Garage forecourt on September 22nd 1968 with Bristol LS6B 37 seater once the pride of South Midland
running between Oxford and London, now downgraded to a local bus with revised destination equipment, taken September 22nd 1968 by Paul Bateson.

Marcus Lapthorn on a visit to Nostalgia Travel

I visited the Nostalgia Travel’s site at Garford on Sunday, February 24th.

W943 SNR was there in Weardale Motor Services livery. I believe that this Dennis Trident was with Nottingham in its earlier life. 

Weardale Motor Services former Nottingham City Transport East Lancs bodied Dennis Trident, B6WMS (originally registered W943SNR).

Also there was JWV 272W which I believe is ex Southdown.
 This was once owned by Michael Wootton.

A day out to Stratford with Ralph Adams

On Tuesday, February 26th, I went to Stratford on route 7 from Banbury. This was a Johnson service, then Stagecoach had it for a short period but is now back with Johnsons again. The number of passengers could be counted on one hand both previously and now so relies on County subsidies to maintain the service. I came back on Johnsons X7 express to Banbury. It was an AD E400, built 2015,  which used to be on the service to Birmingham. All three E400 buses are now on dedicated school bus services as the Birmingham service now only runs on Sundays. Stagecoach previously operated the Birmingham service but gave it up as unprofitable, including a short period of Oxford – Chippy – Stratford – Birmingham hourly.

Two of the E400s mentioned and taken by Richard Sharman.

So my bus had 58 passengers (mainly school children) and the road includes a hill at 16% (1 in 6 in old style). The bus crawled up the hill but being an automatic, there was nothing the driver could do to go down a gear.

Johnsons YJ57YCL leaving Banbury with a 269 service on June 13th 2009 by Richard Sharman.

From Richard Sharman

A little off Ralph's trip[ but showing a Johnson's vehicle. Richard writes "Johnsons Excelbus YY16YLL is seen laying over in Chipping Norton having worked the 50 service in from Stratford-upon-Avon. Johnsons only operate the Sunday and Bank Holiday service, with Stagecoach in Warwickshire operating the rest of the week and Saturday."


Fleet News

        Midlands & The Shires   

Several vehicles are away at present being repainted in to the new livery and in the case of MAX buses these will loose their route branding as well. A few pictures below were taken on Saturday, March 2nd at Cressex depot.

3920, 4722 and 6310 all seen at Cressex Depot on Saturday, March 2nd by Malcolm Crowe.

Cressex always seems to have a few buses being cannibilised to keep like sisters on the road, 6283, 6301 and 6303.

Citaro 3014 with a 32 service loads in the Eden Bus Station on February 27th by Malcolm Crowe.

Another elderly bus on the 280, Wrights 4026 seen in High Street, Oxford on March 2nd by James Freeman .

               Southern Counties   

From Adam Green

Recent arrivals to Hemel are 3753-3754-3757 from Guildford plus 3755 which was spotted by Tim and 3758.

Adam has provided pictures of the new arrivals.

3753, 3754 and 3758 all taken by Adam Green.

Unusually E200 44562 branded for the 12 Trader route is seen on the 3 on March 3rd by Joshua Sammons.


I just missed a picture of 978 heading through Stokenchurch towards Oxford last Thursday, February 28th and I mailed Phil Southall who responded "978 is coming back to Oxford and we have a small Optare Solo on hire to operate the Johnson and Johnson contract for the foreseeable future. It is KX15BMY."

A picture of this SOLO SR can be seen at this link:  https://www.flickr.com/photos/64518788@N05/43415454700

I expect this bus will also provide staff transport.

On  another note and due to unavailability of the normal M A N / E200s last week saw the use of Citaros on both cards for the Link 40 route to Thame. It was a nice surprise but by Saturday orange 423 was back alternating with a red M A N / E200. Pictures are shown below.

858 and 876 with passing Link 40 services in Stokenchurch on February 27th by Malcolm Crowe.

876 heading towards High Wycombe through Stokenchurch on February 28th by Malcolm Crowe.

Phil Southall mentioned the new National Express coaches which will be 58-60 with registrations below. They are Levante 3s and are presently in use on type training.

58    BM68AHP
59    BM68AHU
60    BM68AHV

Who is going to get the first pictures of these coaches?

The older 65 plate Levantes, 53-55, will be transferred to Go South Coast, Salisbury depot.

Scania's 43 PF61OXF & 44 LF61OXF have been sold to Lewis Coaches, Blackheath by Ensign Dealer. (Look out for these as pictures with their new owners would be much appreciated.)

This leaves Scania K360s 41 - MF61OXF & 42 - OF61OXF to be traced to new owners as and when? 

As mentioned under the Carousel heading 978 has now returned from loan and presumably will join its sisters on PMU work. 

From Ralph Adams

The move has taken place and all the buses that I have seen look brilliant with no dirt on them. The bus wash has apparently had new pads installed (I though they would be brushes) so I hope this will continue. A major improvement. 

I looked at the workshop area from the roadway. There are seven workshop bays plus the bus wash.

It appears that the first three are used by Tappins. The doors for bay four was closed so unable to confirm.

Bays 5-7 were all open with no vehicles inside but considerable movement with equipment in the area. It appeared (from a considerable distance) that there was a wall between bay four and bay five.

Will the bus wash be shared – not known at present. 

There is a one way system, in and turn left around the back of the workshop area. Along the rear were a large number of private cars. Also round the back were two of the Camberwick buses plus the preserved coach. The red open top was in bay two. V11OOL is also in use as I saw it at St Birinus school. Staff parking is also on the road outside before the double yellow lines start plus a further line on the grass verge. 

My previous comment on soil was I believe incorrect. It appears it was gravel and half of it had gone this afternoon. A metal grid is laid ready for concrete to be laid to increase the parking area on the TT side. 

The east European mobile homes are still around but further down Collett, alongside further signs stating that overnight parking is not permitted!

From The Editor

Going back a week or so ago I was in Chalgrove in time to get a picture of the T1 when it terminates there.

Once a Carousel bus, 214 is seen in Chalgrove on February 21st with a T1 service - Malcolm Crowe. 

From Stuart Curwen

Attached are a few photos of one of the converted Scania L94UBs that is now a training bus.

The image is of 503 WX06JXR.

Further ones due to be converted are 502 and 507.

Oxford Bus who operate the 737 Oxford-Stansted service have received the first of their new National Express coaches which is 58 - BM58AHP. The other two are 59 and 60 with registrations shown under Oxford.


From Chris Maxfield

I've added some photos of the four new Volvo B8 Plaxton Panthers we have. The unregistered one is taken after being painted and is either BL or CL19PUL. The white one is now GB10URS. MB14ENZ, PU14HAM, SR14NGS and the old GB10 have left the fleet. 

BL19PUL  Vo B8R   Pn   C57F  3/2019 
CL19PUL  Vo B8R   Pn   C57F  3/2019 
GL19PUL  Vo B8R   Pn   C61F  3/2019 


Pictures by Chris Maxfield.

From Bob Morley

Just to keep you up to date on Jet Black services. 

This week we have several non-Jet Black liveried buses on the services, I guess while the others are being repainted into the new livery. 

Monday:  1104, 1101,   1108 

Tuesday, 1101 and 1111 

Wednesday, 762, 1101 and 1108 

Today (Thursday 28th)  762, 1108 and 219. 

762 has been the most unusual over the two days. It is an Emerald route liveried bus 762 Alexander Dennis Enviro MMC. I have only seen one of these buses in Newbury before 768 on a driver route training trip. 

Reading Buses Emerald liveried Alexandra Dennis Enviro MMC number 762 seen some 15 miles from its dedicated route
 on Wednesday, February 27 on the Jet Black service 1 Reading bound in Kiln Road, Newbury. It also appeared on the same route the next day.

Many  thanks to Bob for that information.

431 heads to Peppard Common on February 26th by Elizabeth Crowe.

Marcus Lapthorn visited the outstation near Wantage on Sunday, February 24th a provides us with an interesting picture of the Gold buses used on the S9.


From Richard Sharman

The former South Midland engineering works and Stagecoach Oxford outstation, is now the home of a new retail park in Chipping Norton.

The M&S, Mountain Warehouse and Pet Shop all sit directly over the original foundations of the old depot. The rest of the former Parker Knoll furniture factory is now covered by a new housing estate.


From Gary Seamarks

The loan coach now has a fleet number which is 80041. This coach has been on the 99 for a couple of days last week as well.

Picture by Gary Seamarks. 

Now with Midlands Trident 18398 in its earlier days was first on 27 group service and the the S5 services in Oxford. James Freeman's picture shows it in Coventry recently.

Picture by James Freeman.

Now transferred here from Stagecoach West Scotland are ADL Enviro 200s 36131-34, with more to follow. A picture under West Scotland shows one of the new deliveries.

Former Wessex Bus Enviro 200 36080 is now in service at North Bristol.

The first MAN/Enviro 300s to receive Cummins Euro 6 engine conversions are now returning to Stroud. 

From Paul Hawkins

Seen in Kilmarnock on March 1st is Stagecoach Western Scottish E200MMC 37493 YX19OSA.

The first of 20 new 10.8 metre ADL Enviro 200MMCs for Kilmarnock, 37482-37500, 37601 have now been delivered with 11 examples now entering service.  

37493 YX19OSA  AD E20D   AD J261/12  B??F  3/2019 
37494 YX19OSB  AD E20D   AD J261/13  B??F  3/2019 
37495 YX19OSC  AD E20D   AD J261/14  B??F  3/2019 
37496 YX19OSD  AD E20D   AD J261/15  B??F  3/2019 
37497 YX19OSE  AD E20D   AD J261/16  B??F  3/2019 
37498 YX19OSF  AD E20D   AD J261/17  B??F  3/2019 
37499 YX19OSG  AD E20D   AD J261/18  B??F  3/2019 
37500 YX19OSJ  AD E20D   AD J261/19  B??F  /2019 
37601 YX19OSK  AD E20D   AD J261/20  B??F  3/2019 

The use of 37601 is because Stagecoach London has a batch of E200s starting at 37501 !

Also new for this fleet are two Volvo B11RT/Plaxton elite coaches which we understand will carry fleet numbers 54364/65. Their entry into service will allow similar 54601/03, which have been on loan here, to return to the Megabus fleet with Stagecoach Midlands at Rugby.

54364 YX19MKU  Vo B11RT   Pn JE05/01  C61FLt  3/2019 
54365 YX19MKV  Vo B11RT   Pn JE05/02  C61FLt  3/2019 

q.v. West Scotland have two Volvo B11RT/Plaxton elite coaches which we understand will carry fleet numbers 54364/65. Their entry into service will allow similar 54601/03, which have been on loan here, to return to the Megabus fleet with Stagecoach Midlands at Rugby.

Keep your eyes open for one of these two on the M34 and hopefully a picture or two? 

From Adam Green

Citaro 318 was on Fire over Sarratt on February 25th. 

There have been rather a lot of fires with this type of bus! The uno bus was on the 602 service between Shenley and Radlett. More details can be found at the link below with a picture by Charlotte Fox.


Other operators

Whitehead of Bampton HH02AAA seen in St Giles on March 2nd by James Freeman.

I've seen this on the M40 for the last few years, it's ex Hong Kong and Stagecoach South West and somewhere in between
it worked in Manchester, Simmonds of Slough now use G283YRJ on schools work and it seen near Beaconsfield on March 4th by Malcolm Crowe.

's new Volvo B8Ls with ADL Dennis Enviro400XLB bodies ready to enter service shortly
1074 SJ19OWK - 1076 SJ19OWO and 1080 at Newbridge depot on March 2nd by Gordon Scott.