posted on Monday, August 23rd.

Note : The next issue will be on Sunday, September 5th.


This week has been interesting for the number of unusual pictures and changes to all the things we have been used to for the past number of years.

What is the correct layout for destination screens ?

One is seeing more buses and coaches display the route number on the drivers side of the destination screen. Some examples can be seen in my recent pages.

My understanding is that the route number should be on the street side boarding position and this is being misunderstood by operating companies.

I am also aware that Hannover screens have the setting default to  the other side as this is correct for countries who drive on the left !

I wonder if it is because those programming the blinds are unaware of the default?  Please let me have your comments.

Jack Cooper writes to advise of changes to departure bays at Gloucester Green which are the first in recent times.

As of Monday, September 1st there will be some bay changes at Gloucester Green, these are as follows

Having Sightseeing closer to the shop will mean that it will be even easier to point City Sightseeing customers in the right direction, as they will stop outside the Travel Shop! 

National Express Leisure to become company’s go-to holiday arm

National Express (Nat Ex) has launched National Express Leisure, a new business which focuses on the UK holiday and leisure travel market.

This month, a number of existing businesses and brands within Nat Ex – which include Lucketts Travel of Fareham and Woods Coaches of Leicester – will be brought under the single National Express Leisure banner.

The new arm will be managed by a team which brings together skills and experience from across the UK business. Operations will be based in Fareham and Birmingham.

A number of new roles are being created to accompany the launch, including jobs in marketing, sales, product development, management and distribution.

“We already have significant experience in offering travel in the UK, whether it’s a build your own package with Holidays by National Express, a coach holiday or day trip,” says Nat Ex CEO UK and Germany Tom Stables. “There is a lot more opportunity in this market which we believe we can best tap into by building on our work with existing partners as one business being managed by a single expert team.”

Adds John Boughton, Commercial Director at Nat Ex: “This is a very exciting move at a time when more people than ever are looking to take a break in the UK.

“National Express Leisure will offer the best in convenience and choice along with the great value and high standards of customer service and safety we’re already well known for.”

North of the border changes to buses in Edinburgh

Check this link for an interesting story about Lothian from Scotland

See also below more pictures from Gordon Scott including Lothian !

Gavin Francis visits the Mound at Marble Arch

It is free to visit during August and does provide an interesting view point fo the buses around on August 20th.

On another theme.

Not the Mound but a nice view of Mayflower leaving Victoria with a special steam working on August 17th.

Don't forget the next is in two weeks on  Sunday, September 5th. 

Whilst the majority of travellers seem aware of the requirement to wear masks on public transport, I do notice a growing number of people not using masks anymore. Shops are no longer saying that people should wear masks and the anti-mask part of our population are of course much against any laws as such.

Whilst I have always been proud of the freedoms we are the British have compared to other countries I also believe we need to get this matter resolved to the benefit of all concerned.

Fleet news and developments

Gavin Francis

Pictures from Gavin taken on August 19th.

StreetLites 2325, 2326 and 2327 seen working the 33 in Oxford Street. Nice to see the route using all StreetLites!

The 300 produces a wide variety of buses as seen above and  below.
Solo 2401, Citaro 3031, Wrights 3778 and Wright Pulsar 3786 both from Southern Counties. 3786 started life with Arriva Merseyside!

Wrights 4020 and 4026 also seen working the 300 on the same day.

VDL Wrights 2704 with service 1A in Oxford Street.

More variety on local routes showing 2782 , route 37 - 2787, route 32 and 3700, route 30 all in Oxford Street.

More local routes with only 3915 displays fleet numbers alongside 3915 and 3917 but all three are in the now superseded MAX livery.

ALX 400 4819 looking rather battle scarred in High Street.

Malcolm Crowe

Remaining MCV 3646 seen in Downley working the 30 on August 18th.

Nigel Peach

August 20th 

Arriva's Cressex depot looks quite deserted now that M&M Coaches have moved out.  

Arriva's oldest bus at Wycombe is DAF 2704 (BU02URY), seen here in the workshop - looking in need of a bit of TLC! 

Interesting that at Cressex, there is no sign of any withdrawn buses. I wonder what has happened to 3926?? I see that 3920 is back today after over two months out of service! 

Tony Bungay

Been a surprisingly productive day today, was able to get some photos of 3 newcomers to Aylesbury.  

3778 on an Aylesbury bound 150 

3786 working an outward 280 to Oxford, the destination is there, though the lighting seems to have made it fairly faint.

3550 working an outward bound 150 on a short working to as it says Leighton Buzzard Rail station. 

A vehicle I never expected to see on the limited X16 Service, Sapphire liveried 5465 working the 14.30 to Bicester village on August 21st. 

Gavin Francis

In recent weeks I have seen only StreetLite working the x74 but Gavin caught 69921 and 69929 in Oxford Street on August 19th. 

Gavin Francis

Seems L20URG has been repaired with a piece of megabus !! August 17th. 

Phil Southall

I asked Phil about matters concerning Citaros at Carousel and his reply advised as follows.

"We have acquired them from Konectbus as they wished to dispose of them. However, we have not yet decided if we are going to try and put at least one of them into service or to cannibalise them for spares. Obviously 885 has not yet turned a wheel and might never do so! "

Gavin Francis

Scanias 215 and 216 seen in Oxford Street on August 19th.

Scania 241 seen with a 39 service in Oxford Street on August 19th.

StreetLites 401 and 406 seen with Chiltern Hundreds services in Oxford Street on August 19th.

M A N ADL E200 421 is still active in High Wycombe seen with a 39 service in Bridge Street on August 19th.

Solo 710 is a regular working for the 27 service seen in Oxford Street on August 19th.

Chiltern Hundreds branded Citaros 879 and 881 seen with 103 services in Oxford Street on August 19th.

Red Sprinter 45 979 seen in Oxford Road coming from the depot with a Staff Bus service on August 19th. 

Malcolm Crowe

Ex Brighton & Hove 243 has now arrived, fully branded, at Carousel as seen on August 18th, the day of its arrival in High Wycombe.

Citaro 887 is seen in the depot on August 18th with others.

Here is 886 in the overflow yard at Wycombe depot on August 18th. The two link40 Citaros have been off the road for several days now.

StreetLite 403 is seen at the depot on August 18th. 

Mark Turner

Carousel Citaro 875 with a 103 service leaving Watford on Saturday, August 21st heading back to High Wycombe.

Nigel Peach

Picture attached: Carousel Sprinter 979 departing Beaconsfield New Town for Hazlemere route 577 on August 18th

The yard at Wycombe depot shows two red Sprinters, an ex Brighton & Hove and a Scania E400 on August 20th.
Seen are 859, 979, 241, 219 and 977. 

The latest issue of The London Bus, received today, says "Two more blue ex-Konectbus Citaros have turned up in early August HF55 JZD and HF55 JZJ.... These should replace the last of the MAN E200s 421/3/4."

The two KonectBus Citaros in Wycombe depot on August 18th by Malcolm Crowe.

Jack Cooper

Hybrid 310 with a 4 road service in Park End Street on August 20th.

Brookes branded Micro Hybrids 371 and 374 working City routes on August 17th.

601 working the X3 as branded in Abingdon on August 15th.

Brookes branded MMCs 612 and 614 in Oxford on August 17th.

StreetDeck  662 at Oxford Train Station working 13 road on August 16th.

Jack Cooper

Airline interdeck 68 is seen working airport service at Gloucester Green on August 16th and 18th.

Jack Cooper

Park & Ride 680 displays the all stops service 300 in George Street on August 18th.

Daryl Major

Sprinter 45 972 is seen at Wytham on August 16th. Below it is seen arriving in Oxford.

Jack Cooper

Scania 209 seen in Abingdon with a 41 service on August 19th.

StreetLite 442 is seen working an X2 service at Peachcroft on August 19th.

Multi company Solo 709 is seen working the 45 in Abingdon on August 19th.

Seen in St Aldates Mercedes 0500 874 is seen in St Aldates with an 11 service to Watlington on August 17th.

Sprinter 45 972 is seen in George Street with an ST2 working on August 16th. 

Gavin Francis

21 plate Levante III SH317 seen in Elizabeth Street working the A6 on August 17th. 

Jack Cooper

West Midlands based 269 is seen turning into Gloucester Green with a 210 service on August 16th. 

Jack Cooper

New model Citaro PC18BUS working the 63out of Park End Street on August 20th.

Rhys Cutting

Pulhams Coaches YJ14 BWH (a regular on the X9) seen in Charlbury on August 20th.

including Courtney, Newbury & District & Thames Valley

Gavin Francis

Used by Reading to work the Milton Park shuttle now adorned with an updated Green Line livery which looks great.
795 is seen in Buckingham Palace Road on August 18th working the 702 service.

Kevin Fuller

The Thames Valley route 53 from Bracknell to Wexham Park Hospital is usually operated by 3 Alexander Dennis Enviro 200 MMC's, but occasionally other vehicles deputise.

On 13th August, one of the Wokingham town branded Enviros, number 133, YX63LGW
put in an appearance on an early afternoon service from the hospital to Bracknell,
brightening up a grey Burnham village, as it picked up passengers in Gore Road. 

Gavin Francis

A regular working Wycombe duties is KX05KFF seen in Oxford Street with service 306 on August 19th. 

Tony Bungay

Two Red Rose vehicles on their 17 service yesterday August 20th, unusually for what has been nearly a fortnight a journey not operated by one of their recent acquired Enviro 200 MMC vehicles.

E17RRT and JW65GSW seen working the 17 on August 20th. 

Oxford's seat belted Gold 15966 has now moved to Bristol and will maybe used on the Amazon AZ1 or 2 services. More information under Oxford.


Ciaran Bird

E200 36984 seen in Bicester on August 17th with a 28 service.

Gavin Francis

MMC 10680 displays its new super rear ad at Queens Lane on August 17th.

Banbury's MMC 37401 seen in Magdalen Street West with an S4 working on August 17th.

Peter Leyman

15966 has left Oxford depot and transferred to Bristol depot, in its place from Bristol depot is gold decker 15767 VX61FJZ. This vehicle is planned to have the add blue fitted for the emission to comply with in and around Oxford just like the rest of the Oxford gold Scania's have had fitted in last few months.

15767 seen at Horspath depot on August 19th.

Seen in Magdalen Street East 15767 has failed working one of its first duties for Oxford on August 21st.

Rhys Cutting

On another note, I am sure you've heard but maybe not heard why, that Stagecoach West has had it's first transfer to what was Stagecoach Oxfordshire since the merge! This was 15767 (VX61 FJZ) from Bristol to Oxford and Oxford sent "The Rocket Ship" 15966 (YN14PKZ) to Bristol as part of the trade. This means Oxfordshire has lost all seatbelt fitted and looser speed limited Alexander Dennis Enviro400 vehicles and the last of those bought and used on the short lived route SW1 from Carterton - Witney - London at weekend and bank holidays. 15964 (YN14PKX) & 15965 (YN14PKY) both transferred to Wales earlier this year / last year and have both received the 'Local' guise as have 15613 (OU10BGE) and 15754 (OU61AVJ) there. I'm told the reason for the transfer is because 15966 is newer than 15752-3, 15755-62, 15830-7, & 15933-4 and so has a newer engine that a bought engine convertor that would make it Euro 6 compliant doesn't fit, so rather than buy a new part for it, simply transfer it for an older more used and abused bus (in fact 15767 (VX61 FJZ) was new for route 66, now S6!). I believe it is a "permanent" transfer. As for what Bristol will do with 15966 (YN14 PKZ) is unknown but I reckon due to having seatbelts it will receive the 'Specialist' guise and join 18420-2 (AE06 GZS, AE06 GZT & AE06 GZU) on school, private hire, and Amazon workings. 15767 (VX61 FJZ) first appeared out of no where in it's original 'Gold' guise (so no branding or repaint/new guise (yet...) on routes 2(A/B) (Kidlington - Summertown - Oxford).

Gold 15835 is seen working the S3 in Charlbury on August 20th. Gordon Cutting driving !

Theo Freeman

Some changes to the Banbury fleet from next week. Short E200s 36079/80/330 are off to Bristol and Darts 34467/71 are off for storage (presumably at Network Oxford). Replacements are 34829/81 from Oxford and 10438 from Witney. 

 34472 with a B3 in Bridge Street, Banbury.

36079/80 at the depot in Banbury.

37630 on Chippies (not the best pic due to the rain, but a first I believe).

This week has seen much correspondence about the change of vehicles used on the X5 from Bedford to Oxford.

Peter Edgar

Peter has been busy at Gloucester Green recording the comings and going of the X5 on August 21st.

MMC 10879 is seen in George Street on August 21st.

Widely known as Cpt. Tom Moore, 11279 is now a regular for the X5 seen here in Gloucester Green.

elite I 54303 was also working the X5 seen here arriving at Gloucester Green. I notice the route number has been transposed !!!!!

Another coach with the route number transposed. 54310 is seen reversing off stand heading for Bedford, although still saying it is going to Oxford!!! 

Gavin Francis

Gavin with his wife visited the Marble Arch Mound last Friday and of course he has provided a picture of an Oxford tube in Park Lane.

Gordon Scott

Van Hool Astromega TDX27 both Ex Stagecoach Oxford Tube both in Citylink six City livery both Scotland East based.

50261 - OW14 LJZ taken at Charlotte Square Edinburgh on layover.

50266 - YJ14 LFA taken at Edinburgh Bus Station on route M90.

Jack Cooper

I was very surprised to see 50233 operating a tube express service on Wednesday evening, I thought that the express services were only operated by Panoramas because of the Ultra Low Emission Zone on Baker Street, as far as I am aware, those vehicles are Euro 5, and not the Euro 6 required to operate through that area! 

Niall Spencer

Catteralls UUI4922 which is ex Oxford tube 50220 - OU59AUO seen along the M1 by jc.24 on August 14th.

Theo Freeman

Astromegas 50233/7 and a Panorama at Buckingham Palace Road on August 21st. 

Gavin Francis

54285 seen resting - Elizabeth Bridge on August 18th.

54201, the flagship of the Elitei fleet seen in Elizabeth Street on August 17th.

Snowdons Van Hool working for - Elizabeth Bridge on August 18th. 

We’re introducing more new buses ourselves too! These MCV Volvo B8Rs add some additional capacity to our existing batch of these and have some great new added features such as audio visual announcements.

The new buses ready for service. 


London operators & a visitor

Gavin Francis

Caetano e-City Gold 1622 near Victoria working the C10 on August 17th.

E400 2413 - SN61DGV working the 278 to Heathrow Central on August 20th.

A recent new NOCCO wrap working the 11 by LT484 in Buckingham Palace Road on August 17th.

The 44 seems home to a wide variety of buses from GAL, above WHV81 is seen in Buckingham Palace Road on August 17th.

Visiting coach operators

Glovers of Ashbourne AIG6839, a Volvo/Plaxton Panther seen in Buckingham Palace Road on August 18th.

Premium Tours BV19YLG, a Tourismo, shows the tours are getting back into their stride. Seen in Buckingham Palace Road on August 18th.

To the London Eye, Routemaster RML2621, seen in Buckingham Palace Road on August 18th.

Ayats Bravo City YXY792 LS66OLT resplendent in the latest livery and seen in Buckingham Palace Road on August 17th

North of the Border with Gordon Scott

Gordon makes a welcome return after a period absence from our pages.


Volvo B5TL Alexander Enviro E40D MMC 623 - SJ21MZF on route 44 taken at St Andrew Square Edinburgh.

Alexander Dennis Enviro City BYD Electric 293 - LG21JDO on route 10 taken at Torphin terminus five of these Electric Buses are on this route.

Volvo B8TL Alexander E40D XLB 1125 - SJ19OZD with Edinburgh Zoo full advert, this Bus was in 100 year Lothian Anniversary and white from new.
Taken in Princess Street on route 31.


Volvo B11RLE Plaxton Panorama 50451 - YX21 NNO on Citylink 909 Edinburgh to Stirling taken in Princess Street Edinburgh 

Volvo B8R Plaxton Elite 53806 - YY65SXN taken in Dunfermline
Bus Station in new livery.

Alexander Dennis Enviro 400 19666 - SP60DPK taken in Dunfermline
Bus Station in new livery.

Parks of Hamilton

Volvo B11RLE Plaxton Panorama LSK807 taken in Corstorphine Edinburgh on Citylink 900 route Ex Plaxton demo.

Very many thanks to Gordon for these pictures. 

Alan Whitaker

I don't know whether the attached photos would be of any use for the Bus Page. I was at the Long Hanborough Museum on Sunday (15th) and we had a visit from FOKAB, who brought their Bedford SB3 with Harrington Crusader body. They generously took the coach out for the Museum's 12.15 run, for which I was privileged to be the conductor, and I took this at the photo stop in Freeland.


Then yesterday I was working in the community shop in Iffley and to my astonishment saw the Lodekka parked in Church Way on wedding duty. How the driver got it along Church Way is a mystery to me, but it made a splendid sight, possibly the first time a double-decker has ventured into Iffley village.

Michael Wadman

Some more photos of Buffalo Bus – 

No 65 (THX 533S), Leyland Fleetline / Park Royal, former London Transport DM2533, in St Albans on service 343, April 1st 1995. 

No 46 (URY 598, formerly B572 AVW), on layover in Bletchley bus station on February 17th 1995.
This Volvo B10M-61 was formerly a Berkhof coach with Kings Ferry and was acquired by Buffalo in fire-damaged condition and rebodied by East Lancs.
A rather optimistic shot, probably taken in the early morning on my way to work, when there wasn’t really enough light. 

No 8 (EAV 810V), former Whippet Volvo B58-56 / Duple, in central Milton Keynes on service 98, April 29th 1995. 

No 31 (F151 KGS), Volvo B10M-56 / Plaxton, in central Milton Keynes on service 96, April 29th 1995. 

No 53 (L863 BEA), Iveco Daily / Marshall, in central Milton Keynes on service 98, April
29th 1995

Now a couple from Cheltenham & District days of Stagecoach.

Prior to the national numbering system, this ALX200 is 976 working the 10 in Gloucester on April 2nd 2002.

SC 16142 (R142 EVX) a former London (VA142) Olympian seen in Stroud April 10th 2004.

Marshall Dart 32936 ex Glossopdale again in Stroud on April 10th 2004.

Paul Bateson remembers the 1980s

....... with comments by your Editor on these memory tugging pictures from 1984 with thanks to Paul for the contributions.

Featured elsewhere in this issue LRV992 when still with Portsmouth at Epsom Downs Derby Day - June 6th 1984.

Epsom Downs Derby Day 1984 and a wonderful selection of open top buses from many parts of the U.K.
I never thought I would be driving VDV752 for Rexquote with a Seafront service at Weston Super Mare 16 years later.
When the family went to the Isle of Wight to ride on the Old Lady CDL899 I would have found it hard to believe that
as it was not out that day, the depot Manager arranged for a driver to take us all on a short spin around the area.
Crosville and Caernarfon Castle are always in my mind with our eldest daughter living in Bangor.
Finally I made many visits to Southport with my parents when and before these Leyland PD2 s arrived - wonderful colour scheme.

Leyland Atlantean and an Olympian working shuttle duties to the races on Derby Day 1984.

Litter is seemingly not a new problem, sometimes I wonder about the population of a nice country like ours not caring !
  Leyland Atlantean LLH7K had been new for TWA airport service if I remember correctly. certainly LLH6K was in TWA livery.
this was compete with BOAC and their double deck coaches.

Here is one of the fleet of Atlantean coaches used by BOAC when the town terminal for check in was still popular.
LYF317D is seen at Knebworth Rally on July 29th 1984.

Another picture which tugged at my memory was this one of Bristol VRs taken at Royston on June 24th 1984.
Some 30 plus years earlier, when at RAF Bassingbourn,  I used to return by train and catch and early from Royston Station to the RAF base
travelling by a lowbridge Bristol K. I wonder if there a re any photos of that service in 1958?

More pictures to come from Paul in our next issue. 

I have an excellent piece on North American buses from Thomas Walker for the next issue.

Fred Gough

Malcolm   Just to advise that the gold Scania coach belongs to Bakers Dolphin in Weston super mare, not Oxfordshire.

 Thanks for all the info you provide, very handy If I visit Oxford.

I amended this on receipt of Fred's email. Ed.

Geoff Cunliffe

Your latest Weekly Briefing has a picture of LRV 992 in Devon, mentioning it once worked in Oxford. 

Herewith two pictures of it with Thames Transit taken by Tim Weatherup. It started life with Portsmouth and is a 1956 Metro-Cammell bodied PD2/12.

You have, of course, previously used one of your own photos of CHL772 when it was with Guide Friday.

I am sure you remember it was new to Hastings & District and then to West Riding. My notes show it was a CVD6 with a Willowbrook B35F from 1950.  

Jack Cooper

I thought I'd answer some questions from previous pages  

With regards to the destinations on the X5 simply showing Bedford, they should still show "Buckingham for Bedford" when leaving Oxford, as the service is registered in different sections so it can be ran under British rules, if the X5 was registered as one complete service between Oxford and Bedford, then it would fall under EU rules, requiring the use of a tacho card for the driver. Destination blind wise, the coach could simply show X5 Bedford.  

On the topic of the X5, I have noticed there are still more coaches over buses running the service, and the majority of buses have had leather seats, although I have noticed one with low back seating!  

There will be pictures from readers visits in the next issue.