Issue nr. 177
Monday, November 1st 2021


A busy week behind me with another interesting and well contributed page.

This issue has reports and pictures concerning the London Bus Museum Event on October 24th plus the Open Day at Stagecoach Plumstead Garage last Saturday, October 30th.

Thanks to everyone who has contributed and supported this week's OCBP Weekly Briefing. 

Sunday 24th October 2021 ~ TransportFest 2021 

David Allen

David's pictures show the wide variety at this event.

Tony Bungay

Obviously late for your next newspage, but should you want to use any, might be suitable for the following one.

Went to the what is billed the October Busfest at Brooklands, I may well be wrong, but I would imagine this is possibly the only event of this type that London Bus Museum has held this year, as the usual other 2 fell within the restriction’s that has impacted on so much over the past 18 months or so, though of course they have staged some drive bys.

The weather was good and any rain stayed away until well after the finish, there was a reasonable attendance of visiting vehicles and traders.

Again most photos are self explanatory, the dark photo being a wartime London Bus in an air raid setting.

A selection including an RT  and above a K chassis. BYD single decker.

A great selection of pictures from two regular contributors to whom I extend grateful thanks.

Open Day : Plumstead Garage visited by Gavin Francis

The "new" Plumstead garage (code PD) replaced the old garage (code AM) and Abbey Wood garage (AW) forty years ago. To celebrate 40 years of the garage, Stagecoach London held an open day on Saturday, October 30th. Gavin spent a few hours watching all that was taking place.

Plumstead AM was originally opened by the LGOC in 1913. It was one of a number requisitioned during the First World War, re-opening as a bus garage in 1919. ... Along with Abbey Wood, it closed in 1981 when the new Plumstead garage opened in Pettman Crescent. The site in Wickham Lane is now occupied by a DIY store.

The event included former bus types which have operated from the garage since 1981 alongside the current fleet. In addition, there was a display of non Plumstead based Stagecoach London buses as well as buses from other Stagecoach areas.

Shuttle buses operated from Woolwich Arsenal station to the garage. Gavin's pictures show much of what was on offer.

Below are pictures of the event including vehciles featured.

As Gavin's pictures show there was plenty for visitors to see and do making a memorable day.

David Ive

Please see attached a couple of pictures from Sussex last week, which may fit into a “Buses in the Landscape” category; 

A Stagecoach South ADL Enviro 400MMC on the "Coastliner" 700 route between Brighton and Littlehampton passes Shoreham Lighthouse.

Climbing out of Rottingdean is Brighton & Hove 461 "Henry Venn Elliott", a Volvo B9 Wright Eclipse Gemini 2.

These are some very pleasant pictures and much appreciated.

Jack Cooper

I was impressed with this picture of Thames Travel 623 with an X2 to Didcot at Oxford Train Station on October 30th.
Well done to Jack who is taking some very good photographs recently.

Within England restrictions have been all but removed whereas in Wales it maybe that another lockdown could be applied and Scotland is not having too good a time.

Another worrying story concerns dogs and discarded face masks. It is reported that a dog chewed a discarded mask and the wire got stuck in his stomach resulting in an expensive operation.


Fleet news and developments


Jack Cooper

Wrights 3816 seen working the 280 at Oxford Rail Station on October 26th.

Ex Derby 4400 with a 260 working in Speedwell Street on October 27th,

Malcolm Crowe

A visit to Cressex depot on October 30th.

Present in the yard were 3010, 3014, 3924, 4819 and 2992.

... and in The Eden Bus Station on the same day, 3012 out of service.

Nigel Peach

I had to pop into Wycombe today. Three pictures attached. 

Citaro 3027 about to enter the bus station from Reading route 800. 

3027 again, this time joined by 3043, recently transferred back to Wycombe
after a spell at Aylesbury, then briefly at MK. I believe this is the only Citaro still in Sapphire livery. 

A general view of the bus station - nearly all Citaros!  

As well as recent transfer 3043, Citaro 3924 was also running on a Wycombe route, but it evaded my camera! This has been at Aylesbury nearly all its life. ( doesn't recognise either of them at the moment!) I think last surviving MAN 3646 and DAF 2704 (not to be confused with 2740, still working!) have been withdrawn, and I haven't seen Optares 2990 and 2992 lately so I wonder if they have gone too.

Pete Cannon

It looks like 3924 BK58URS has returned to Wycombe again but this and 3043 BV58MLJ is in service at Wycombe both buses on the 37 today, October 27th. 

Tony Bungay

Arriva 5469 the other E400 named after Olympic Gold Medallist twins, in this case Jessica Gadirova,
working a 500 duty on October 27th. 

Gavin Francis

BlaBlaBus Van Hool FJ475WZ leaves VCS on October 26th followed by Flixbus workings.


Kevin Fuller

I don't have any news from this part of the world, but enclose three pictures that I have taken in the last week or so, demonstrating the variety of vehicles / liveries of the local First fleet. 

Volvo 7900H Hybrid 69924, BV13ZCN,  pauses in Staines bus station on October 23rd
with a Heathrow - Slough (via Windsor) service 8.
This bus carries livery and branding for route 7 between Britwell and Heathrow. 

In standard Firstbus livery, Wright Streetlite Max 63313, SM65LNH, picks up passengers in Farnham Common
whilst working a High Wycombe - Slough X74 service on October 28th.
Note the 'witch on a broomstick' showing in the destination display, in advance of Halloween. 

On October 28th, Volvo B7RLE/ Wright Eclipse 69392, HY09AOR is seen at the Britwell shops terminus of route 7.
The livery on this bus is in the local Berkshire 'generic' style, with no specific route branding.

Whilst preparing this issue, this picture made me feel hungry with the fish and chip in the background !

Gavin Francis

Ridleys BF21EPA seen in Elizabeth Street with an 020 to Birmingham on October 25th.

I asked Phil Southall about the latest developments with his group companies and he advises as follows.

Yes, 21 on loan to B+H and 22 to 25 sold to Ensign, although two of them are still here for the moment and should go this week.

As part of this deal, we have acquired two Euro VI Optare Versa - YJ65EVM / EVN - that will be going into Carousel, as we need more Euro VI compliant vehicles to enter the London ULEZ with more Chiltern Hundreds interworking. Also one eye on removing 886 and 887 from the fleet eventually after Christmas.

The new Versa will be numbered 431 and 432 and should enter service once general Carousel graphics have been applied. 

In other news,  316 and 317 are away being converted to Euro VI diesel, 943 and 944 are still awaited back from Hants and Dorset Trim (ex Metrobus Scania) and 873 to 875 are next to be repainted (into Thames Travel livery).

I much appreciate this update from Phil, especially on the  additions to the Carousel fleet.

Gavin Francis

...... two pictures taken in Stokenchurch on November 1st of link40 and The Kings recently gutted by fire.

In the background of 887 is The Kings where further collapses occurred overnight October 31st during very high winds.

Malcolm Crowe

A visit to Wycombe depot on October 30th.

Scania 218 ready for service on The ONE outside the depot.

Seen inside the depot are two ex konnect Citaros and StreetLite 408 which has not seen service since October 18th.

980 was outside the offices waiting for its next duty.

Not at the time required for service (it was half term) 880, 938, 9941, 938 and 876.

In the overflow yard we can still see 421 and 423 amongst others including Solo 710 seemingly withdrawn. 

Gavin Francis

A van which visits far and wide is this publicity Ford 1905 seen in Gloucester Green on October 25th.

Jack Cooper 

4 branded Scania 301 is seen with a 15 road service in Speedwell Street on October 27th.

363 is seen at the Rail Station with a 500 road working on October 26th.

672 and 678 are seen working 400 road services at Seacourt on October 27th.

Citaro 847 also seen with a 400 service at Seacourt on October 27th. 

As reported under National Express Tourismo 39 worked the 1030hrs 737 on Sunday, October 31st. This was due to a failure of the rostered vehicle.

All the Plaxton Panther 3 bodied Volvo B11R's 21-25 have now been withdrawn as mentioned by Phil Southall above. 

Ciaran Bird

I managed to capture the OX7 on my new phone earlier today in Kidlington and had a nice conversation with the very friendly driver Will! Next time the working will be either 939 or a Scania N94UD, some older traction for me to keep my eye out for!

Scania 212 seen in Kidlington working OX7 to the Kassam Stadium on October 30th.

Jack Cooper

905 is seen approaching Abingdon in heavy rain with an X2 on October 24th.

907 is seen in St Aldates in dryer conditions with an X2 during evening of October 27th.

A surprise return to service in recent days is 912 which looks to have received a deep clean working the X38in St Aldates on October 27th.
913 has not been out since October 27th and 914 since the beginning of October.

Gavin Francis

The 737 service at 1030 was due to have been worked by 57 - BV67JYS to STANSTED Airport London (STN) which suffered a mechanical problem and the service was actually worked by Airline 39 BV19YGK running some 30 minutes late. Sadly Gavin advises that his London duty departed before he could get a picture! 

Levante III 332 is seen working an A1 service in Elizabeth Street on October 26th.

Edwards Levante BV17GSZ is seen working a 401 service in Elizabeth Street on October 26th.

Lucketts Levante tri-axl BU18OSL is seen working an 025 service in Elizabeth Street on October 26th.

Levante III 251 is seen working an A1 service in Elizabeth Street on October 25th.

Levante III 322 is seen working an A6 service in Elizabeth Street on October 26th.

Reading/Newbury Levante 1406 is seen working a 210 service in Gloucester Green on October 29th.
The very clean wheels are a credit to the operator.

Gavin also saw the hired Oxford Airline coach in Victoria during the past week but was unable to get a picture.

Matthew Taylor

Last week while taking my daughter to School I saw a plain white Plaxton Panther driving around Northampton, it had panels on the side similar to those on National Express duplicates. Didn’t get a photo unfortunately. 

The registration L1OND, or L1ON D suggested it had something to do with local operator Country Lion, but unusually plain white. So watch this space. 

including Courtney, Newbury & District & Thames Valley

Jack Cooper

.....paid a visit to Reading last week.

Newbury 782 working the Vodafone contract V1 on October 29th.

Variety in Reading with four different liveries on services from the town of Reading on October 29th. 


Ensign advise that their Volvo B9TL Olympus 115 PO58NPP has been acquired by Redline.

PO58NPJ with NPP behind in this picture by Tony Bungay taken on October 16th.

Jack Cooper

Unbranded WH66BUS is seen in Speedwell Street, Oxford with an X20 working on October 27th.

Tony Bungay

Red Rose E20RRT gives passengers on the 101 a bit of upmarket luxury I would imagine
 on October 25th. 

Jack Cooper

Other operators are having their Hybrids converted to diesel and here is one of SC Oxford's oldest 12004
with a 10 service, most of these being confined to this route now. October 27th.

Gold Scania 15934 working route 8 in Speedwell Street on October 27th. It looks clean and tody.

Not long to go now as 28745 will be moving to Gloucester seen here with an S4 on October 27th.

Repainted into local livery 47658 has not seen service for many days now but here at Witney depot on October 27th.

So far we have not seen one of the distance liveried MMCs with full branding. I wonder why?

Gavin Francis

10804 seen in Gloucester Green with an X5 service on October 25th.

10872 also with an X5 at Gloucester Green on October 27th.

Martin Banks

Distance liveried 10872 seen in Gloucester Green with an X5 working on October 25th.

Thomas Walker

Seeing as you're collecting yellow X5s in recent editions, here're two on Thursday night at MK Central! 

Details here:

Stagecoach new long-distance livery ADL Enviro 400 MMC SN66WAJ 10804 at Milton Keynes Central
 on the X5 to Oxford passing YX67VDK 10873 on a Bedford working, October 28th.

Martyn Sacaloff

 Trainer 34627 seen at Northampton depot on October 28th. 

Jack Cooper

Jack  visited Newbury and caught this South vehcile on a Newbury service.

Working the Basingstoke Link from Newbury is South 27620 on October 29th.

The past weekend has seen three Astromegas operating into London. Sunday October 31st using 50233, 50235 and 50250. Today November 1st 50235 is in use.

I am told that load factors during the recent half term week have been very good indeed. 

megabus seem not to be using so many of their own coaches now and many services are being operated by hired companies.

Gavin Francis

59224 is seen in VCS with a south west working on October 25th.

Yellow Bus use ex National Express Levantes on the megabus route to Bournemouth as seen on October 29th.

Goldwings are seen in Elizabeth Street with an M10 service on October 29th.

Here are McLeans with a VDL AJ69MCL working an M11X on October 29th.

Orion Astromega OT51BUS with an M15 in Elizabeth Street on October 29th.

Irizar YT71GHD from Prospect seen working the M22 in VCS and Elizabeth Street on October 29th.
The livery application is interesting.

London operators & Visitors

Gavin Francis

abellio Caetano 1513 seen in Buckingham Palace Road with a C10 service on October 27th.

applegates Astromega G7EFA is seen on Elizabeth Bridge but it is not known if was working a hire or own work on October 29th.

Michael Wadman

Some more photos of Thamesdown, from Keith Newton. 

In 1984 he managed to get hold of details of their closed school contracts to take some early morning shots of Thamesdown buses in out-of-the-way rural locations where they weren’t normally photographed. 

No 147 (MWV 147G), Daimler Fleetline / Northern Counties, at Horpit.

This location was officially described as “Mount Pleasant Farm milk stand”.(I understand that the structure in question quite obviously hadn’t been used for years and was in a very dilapidated state, such that any attempt to put a milk churn on it would have resulted in total collapse.) Presumably the driver has already wound up the blind for its first public journey after the contract.  

No 56 (SMW 56Y), Dennis Dominator / Northern Counties, in Uffcott. 

No 69 (JMW 169P), Bristol RESL6G / ECW, which Keith thinks might be somewhere near Wanborough.

and now a few pictures of Stagecoach in Swindon by Michael Wadman.

Swindon & District National II 373 BHY997V working route 55 in Calne on May 23rd 1997.

Swindon & District Dennis Dart 903 P903SMR working route 70 in Marlborough on February 25th 1997.


Dave Allen

Thought you might like this picture from the archives. Taken when Routemasters prowled the streets of Manchester (for a short time). A small private company I think they called the Piccadilly Line won a contract under deregulation rules and operated a small fleet for a year or so. Seen here in Piccadilly bus station. You probably know more!

RM429 at work in Manchester on route 143.

GMT had these Dennis buses on the stations shuttle.

Paul Bateson 

...... with some pictures from the past.

Midland Red South at Stratford on July 5th 1985.

South Midland ex COMS 83 - RBW83M in Banbury on July 5th 1985.

Midland Red South 6462 DHA462K in Banbury July 5th 1985.

These pictures will bring back some memories for older readers with many thanks to Paul. 


Abingdon to Wolvercote service is once again going to be split in 2 from 11/7 following feedback from residents of Wolvercote? It certainly will be nice to have more in the way of normality again and it will mean that delays on 1 part of the route don't affect the other as is often the problem with cross-city services in Oxford due to various pedestrianisation schemes. That was the reason that the 35 was so unreliable, and the advantage of having A short route like the 6, which is being re-introduced to replace that part of the route. Why was it that they combined the 2 routes during Covid?

Neil Gow

If anyone from Arriva reads your page, I wonder if they would review their policy of having duplicate (or in the case of the 32, triplicate) route numbers within The Shires operating area. As the attached timetable snippet shows, they’ve even managed to confuse themselves!

The example mentioned.

Any answers for Neil? 

Ben Studley and his visit to West Bay

West Bay, originally known as Bridport Harbour, is a small harbour settlement and resort on the English Channel coast in Dorset, England, sited at the mouth of the River Brit approximately 1.5 miles south of Bridport. The area is part of the Jurassic Coast, a World Heritage Site.

 24th Oct West Bay - 37987 with Ben chatting to the driver.

 25th Oct West Bay - 37582 and 37999, 65947, 37585

Weymouth - 37999 and 69554 with Ben again.

26th Oct West Bay - 33709.

27th Oct - West Bay 37999 (driven by Callum) Bridport.

37580, 37582 Bridport bus station - 33724 (hand wash rather than drive through there),

28th Oct - 37580 Bridport bus station.

33724, West Bay

This brings back happy memories of my trip from Stokenchurch to Lands End in 2008.

As readers will see via these links The Jurassic Coast Express has changed somewhat in 2021 nearly 14 years later. 


Some interesting movements are highlighted in bold.

Purfleet October 2021 as follows : 


From Oxford Bus Co : Volvo B11R’s BF / CF / DF / EF14OXF. 

From Axe Valley : Volvo B7TL LF52ZFP. 

From Stagecoach SE : Tridents LV52HFT / HFW / HFZ. 

From Grant Palmer : Scania YN03WRG. 

From Metroline : Volvo B9TL’s LK59CWV / CXA / CXM / FCX / CXG / CXJ / CWN. 

From Go-Ahead London : E400 LX07BYH   E200’s LX07BXL / BXH / BXN /  BXS /  BXV / SK07DZO / SN57DWJ / DWZ / DWW / DWP  / SK07HLO  

From Lothian Buses : Volvo B9TL’s  SN09CTU / CTV / CTX / CTY / CTZ / CUA / CUC / CUG / CUH / CUJ / CUK / CUO / CUU / CUV / CUW / CUX / CUY / CVA. 

From Redbridge Transport : Volvo B7TL LK51XGL / XGN / PN02XCS   Olympian S265YOO 

From Sidlaw Coaches : Scania YN55NGY. 

From Translink : Scania K320s JFZ7001 / 2 / 6 / 13 / 16 /18 / 22 / 23 / 28 / 29 / 9036   BYZ2386. 


Volvo B9TL’s SN09CTV / CTX / CTY / CUO : Happy Al’s, Liverpool. 

Volvo B9TL’s SN08BYP / BYU / BYV  SN09CTZ / CUA / CUK / CUU / CVA / CTU : Notts and Derby. 

Volvo B11R’s BF / CF / DF / EF14OXF : Solus Coaches, Tamworth. 

Scania YN55NGY : Panther Travel, Harwich. 

E200s LX07BXK / BXL / SK07DZO / SN57DWP : Red Route Buses, Northfleet. 

Volvo B7L’s EU05VBG / VBP : Liverpool City Sights. 

E200’s SN57DWM / LX07BXR   Trident LV52HFT  : Seven Sister Bus and Coach, Lewes. 

Trident LV52HFP : Tolers Coaches, Wisbech. 

Scania LX59COJ : Borderbus, Bungay, Suffolk. 

Scania YV03PZK : Redfern Travel, Mansfield. 

Versa’s YJ65EVM / EVN : Oxford Bus Co. 

E400 SN12EHC : Redbridge Transport. 

E400 SN11BPY : Bws Peris , Llanberis. 

Volvo B9TL SN08BYH : Brylaine Travel, Boston. 

Volvo B9TL’s SN08BXD / BYC : Grant Palmer, Dunstable.

Volvo B12M YS02YXT : Fowlers Coaches, Holbeach Drove. 

E200 SN57DXA : Stephenson's of Essex, Rochford. 

Scania YN56FCE : MID Coaches, Crediton, Devon. 

Scania YN56FBZ :, SE15. 

Volvo B7TL’s LK51XGL / KP51WAO : Gardbus, Eastleigh. 

Tridents V196 / 198MEV  S817BWC : NE Coachways, Peterlee. 

Volvo B7TL LK04HYH : South East Bus Supplies, Kent. 

Volvo B7TL LK04HYG : Leia Mackinnon : Forest Gate, London. 

E200 SK07HLO : Mr N May, Birmingham. 

Shelton Motors  for scrap : Tridents LK05GFV / GGJ. 


Volvo B9TL 115 : Redline, Aylesbury. 

Volvo B9TL 119 : Crosskeys, Folkestone. 

PD3 5280 NW : York Pullman.