Another busy week in our area with reports on various events. We've had the Isle of Wight Classic Buses Beer, the Centenary Celebrations in Banbury, the Oxford Half Marathon supported by Oxford Bus plus Les Burton's visit to Macau. We also see the launch of megabus without the .com and North of the border with Gordon Scott, who visited ADL at Falkirk thereby seeing more new buses for SC Witney on test.

A special note is the report on Macau to which I have added a number of interesting links. They even have their own www.bustimes.org named  http://www.dsat.gov.mo/bus/site/busstopwaiting.aspx?lang=en  I found this site most interesting and enables one to see what buses are working on which route.

Stagecoach is launching an invitation to passengers who are able to nominate their customer service star.

A number of readers have provided pictures of the various operators included under Fleet News. 

Late news is that Wrightbus has been "saved" following a deal with Jo Bamford to buy the land and factory. Completion of the part built buses in the factory may start soon and word is waited on the warranty situation regarding buses already in service.

Finally pictures inside and out of the new Plaxton Panorama, 54011, joining the megabus fleet today, October 17th with pictures from Gordon Scott in Aberdeen.

Click on the link for details of the buses.

Gary Seamarks visited the Island on Saturday, October 12th to enjoy the experience of Buses & Beer. He was not disappointed in one aspect, the Buses, he does not mention the beer!!!

Gary sent a good selection of visiting vehicles and you can see more details on "buses.php" above.

He wrote "Few from Sat 12/10/19 Isle of Wet beer and buses, did a day trip down early start (04.30) for 8.15 boat from Portsmouth, return 18.47 from Ryde home for last orders at 22.30.

The Stagecoach E400 was used on at least the service between the Museum and Esplanade in Ryde.


Although the weather was poor in the morning, turning to heavy rain just before lunch the crowds were still out and I would estimate around 90 buses were in use throughout the day, including two bendi's and several open-toppers. Several buses were overcome by the weather and were taken out of service.

Luckily for those wanting to queue, both the hubs at Newport and Ryde Museum had very large marque's to ensure most waited in the dry, with many departures having two buses allocated."

The Museum's 908 seen just after 0900 before the rain had started with a load of happy punters.

Much earlier after overnight rain, a coach of my younger days, North Western's 915 outside on of the many hotels on the island.
The registration is a replacement for the original VDB915 which seems no longer in use. The coach is a credit to its owner.

A nice shot of Bedford/Willowbrook 111 of United  Counties with a full load on the morning just before 9!

SC South provided this "Cancer Research" overall ad with cherished registration, 404DCD. Fleet number 19063.

Another well travelled vehicle is this Guy Arab/Burlingham coach new to Harpers of Heath Hayes, 1294RE.
Staffordshire was, I believe, the first licensing authority to use reverse letters.

This Leyland is actually in disguise, it was new to Rawtenstall Corporation, a Leyland Titan PD2/12 –RTC 822, fleet nr. 18.
It was acquired by Quantock Motor Services in 2009 and has reappeared as a Scout bus of a similar period.

This Leyland PD3 with Northern Counties panoramic body captures the essence of Southdown, even on this wet day.

Swindon's Daimler CVG6, nr 145, also with NCME bodywork attended the event.

This Routemaster in Clydeside livery was once LT's RM835 and made a welcome splash of colour on an otherwise dull day.

A surprise entry was this one time Go Ahead Mercedes Bendi-bus, MAL15, which doubtless proved an excellent crowd mover on this wet day.

The day was really wet when this picture of Southern Vectis 628 was taken before Gary Seamarks returned home.

Many thanks to Gary for a most useful report.


A report from Malcolm Crowe plus pictures from Ciaran Bird, Mike Lewis and Theo Freeman

The current outside view in this picture from Mike Lewis and Malcolm's picture of a model on display.

To say, that as a retired person, 0730 on a Sunday morning, when outside it's foggy and raining, is not the most attractive reason to leave a warm bed! Anyway I did as the following shows.

My first view on arrival was this wet line up of various buses attending including two Midland Red's, one an S22 (5905) and the other an S23 (5919).

Another picture this time of D9 5399 and Tanner's Bedford OB. Both would be used later in the day. 5399 was in Midland Red livery.

Not being wholly familiar with Banbury I failed, initially, to realise that the main proceeding were taking place a short walk away in the town where I was soon able to make my way.

My first sight of one of the new Witney buses, 11236, which had only arrived from the builders a few days earlier.

Stagecoach Midlands 15675, adorned with Stratford Blue livery also attended and is seen in the Market Square.

Banbury's 37401 was the centerpiece of the gathering in the Market Square and included on view some interesting pictures and the model shown above.
The first picture is from Ciaran Bird, the second and third from Malcolm, two showing a way to raise money by putting a person's name on the screen for a donation .

Formal proceedings, celebrating 100 years of service in Banbury was given by (l to r) The Town Mayor of Banbury - Cllr John Colegrave,
Trevor Bayliss, Banbury Manager and Chris Coleman, Managing Director of Stagecoach in Oxfordshire. The rain managed to hold off
whilst these gentlemen recalled the history of bus services in the town. Picture by Malcolm Crowe.

Later in the day, a cake was cut marking the Centenary of services which started in 1919 with a route to Deddington. Picture by Theo Freeman.

Earlier in the day, 11236 is seen near the depot by Theo Freeman.

Surely it has been many a moon since an early Stagecoach Dart has been seen in Banbury depot?

S22 5905 is seen heading for another run on route 511 in the middle of the day.

The Tanner's Bedford OB brought back memories of those days when small private operators also served the town. Picture by Theo Freeman.

The Midland Red contingent were kept busy giving ride to all those attending.
The turning area is marked with double yellow lines but being Sunday car owners seem to have forgotten they were causing problems for the S22 and S23.
Pictures by Malcolm Crowe and Mike Lewis.

Finally a picture of the back of 11236, with full width destination screen, much better for the travelling public.

I enjoyed the couple of hours I was present and did not let the rain dampen my spirits. By the time I left around 1230, the rain was stopping and my journey home along the M40 was uneventful.

My congratulations to all those involved, including Laura Grant, Marketing Manager - Trevor Bayliss, Banbury Manager and Phil Pointer of Banbury depot to mention but a few. Well done all !

RML2738 acted as a Sales Point for items such as Calendars, Pens etc. which were on sale towards the Hospice.

Finally a special note that the Charity "Katharine House Hospice" was pleased to receive just short of £1100. taken from the various activities on the day.


Sunday saw the Oxford Half Marathon take place and Oxford Bus provided many extra services. It is suggested that some 10,000 people, despite heavy rain, used these buses and many of the fleet were in use as the pictures below show.

Variety working the 500 saw 684 and 690 coming into Oxford by Gavin Francis.

312, 358, 361 and 362 are seen providing service on the Oxford Half Marathon specials again by Gavin Francis.

For a Sunday one can appreciate how busy it was in these pictures from Ciaran Bird.

361 is seen with a 400 service heading for Thornhill in picture from Ciaran Bird.

364 is seen by The Westgate shopping centre in this picture from Mike Lewis.

Macau with Les Burton

Les visited Macau in September and took a number of pictures of the various buses to be seen. All kinds of buses in Macau - Macao Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China, is an autonomous territory on the western side of the Pearl River Delta, China. Macau is also bordered by the city of Zhuhai in Mainland China to the North and the Pearl River Estuary to the East and South. Hong Kong lies about 64 kilometres (40 mi) to its East across the Delta. With an estimated population of around 652,500 living in an area of 30.5 km2 (11.8 sq. mi), it is the most densely populated region in the world.

Check out this link for the various buses etc: Buses in Macau

These links relate to the main bus services to and in Macau.

Also this link for bus history in Macau : https://www.dsat.gov.mo/bus/site/subpage.aspx?a_id=1449199134#

And this link to see where each bus is per route: http://www.dsat.gov.mo/bus/site/busstopwaiting.aspx?lang=en  Readers will find this fascinating to use. There is even a facility to comment on the driving etc!!

This is a link to buses in the Transmac fleet : https://www.hkitalk.net/HKiTalk2/thread-1054469-1-1.html


This is a link to buses in the TCM fleet: TCM Bus details


Should you arrive by air in Macau, this is an interesting link: http://www.macau-airport.com/en/transportation/public-transport/public-buses

Hong Kong-Macau service: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d9v6UGPrImw

Finally relating to the bridge service: https://www.hzmb.gov.hk/en/transport/cross-boundary.html

Interesting are the centre doors on both sides !

Buses used on sightseeing tours. MACAU - Goldspark Macau Tours Ltd. 

BF60 UUE Anhui Ankai / Ankai POB43F red (‘Emperor’ advertising livery) New as open top, ?/10 
BF60 UUJ Anhui Ankai / Ankai POB43F red (‘Emperor’ advertising livery) New as open top, ?/10
MT-41-82 Anhui Ankai / Ankai POB43F red New as open top, by 4/15
MT-45-33 Anhui Ankai / Ankai POB43F red New as open top, by 4/15

MT-45-33 an Anhui Ankai seen in Macau.

All pictures from Les Burton taken on September 12th.

North of the Border with Gordon Scott

More new buses for Oxford at Falkirk

11235 making a test run on October 11th.

11240 leaves for a test run again on October 11th.

All pictures taken at ADL, Falkirk by Gordon Scott. 

Fleet news and developments

A updated fleet list from Arriva shows no real changes at present with the bus's allocations.

A nice picture of recently repainted 3798 working an X8 Express from Aylesbury on October 10th by Gavin Francis.

Paul Swann of Arriva advises that a Demonstrator tri-axle Mercedes Tourismo arrived last week at Luton today for a couple of weeks   BF67WLK  Keep your eyes open please Guys. 

It would appear that Aylesbury's 3797 is away for repaint.

The Van Hool loan coach in GLCS Bulleid Way on October 10th by Gavin Francis.

By the way do check this link: https://www.greenline.co.uk/latest/green-line-waves-goodbye-to-its-greatest-ever-commuter-after-thirty-three-fabulous-years/

I am advised that 709 is the current bus for the J&J contract SS1. No new bus has been ordered for this operation.  

Apart from the special services for The Oxford Half Marathon there has been little of note in the past week.

Some pictures from Gavin Francis.

Hybrid 310 was pressed into service to Pear Tree 300 on Sunday, October 13th.

Regular P&R 673 is seen arriving in Oxford from Oxford Parkway at Water Eaton. No doubt many attending the Half Marathon came by train from London.
Picture taken by St Giles on  October 13th.

Unusually orange 688 appeared on 5 road on Sunday, October 13th when seen by Ciaran Bird.

PMU's 077 is seen in the City Centre on Sunday, October 13th by Mike Lewis. 

Again not much from this operator, all of the new E200's having been in service over the past week.

A nice, if wet shot, of GWR branded 221 working Thames Travel's X32 service on Sunday, October 13th when seen by Ciaran Bird. 

Some pictures from Gavin Francis over the past week or so.

East Yorkshire's nr 5 is seen in Elizabeth Rd, the screen showing I NEED LANE 4 which is used for arrivals in "Sammy's".
Taken on October 10th.

Stagecoach does have some Levante IIIs as seen by this rear view of 54411 laying over on Elizabeth Bridge. The date October 10th.

I do feel for the driver, it is only too easy for another vehicle to think they can get by when a long coach is turning left. Taken on October 14th.



Stagecoach Group has launched its annual employee awards and is inviting passengers to nominate their top customer service star.

The employee awards, which are now in their tenth year, recognise staff achievements in a number of areas including safety, customer service, innovation, community, health and wellbeing, environment and operational excellence. There will also be an overall Stagecoach Star who will become the champion of champions.

Customers can nominate a member of staff who they see on a regular basis and they feel offers consistently great service. Alternatively, there may be a member of the Stagecoach team that has done something really exceptional to help a customer and may be worthy of an award.

As the UK’s biggest bus and coach operator, the awards are open to the company’s 24,000 employees across the country.  

Nominations are now open and can be made through www.stagecoach.com/stars up until Monday 11 November.

In addition, every customer who nominates an employee will be entered into a prize draw to be in with the chance of winning £250 Love2Shop vouchers

Clare Burles, People Director for Stagecoach Group, said: “Our business is built on our people and we are proud to have a highly trained team of over 24,000 employees across the country doing a great job in connecting our customers to jobs, skills and training, shopping and leisure and helping to bring families and communities together.

“We get some great feedback on our people, and we know that many of our customers will have a favourite bus or tram driver, customer service assistant or inspector that makes their journey even better.  We’d really love to hear from our customers who their Stagecoach Star is, and nominations can easily be made at www.stagecoach.com/stars.”

Customers who wish to nominate an employee should visit www.stagecoach.com/stars to complete an online form, stating their name, contact details* location, name of the employee being nominated and why they are being nominated. The deadline for nominations is midnight on Monday 11 November 2019.  A judging panel made up of drivers, managers and engineers will select the winners and these will be presented at an awards event in February 2020. 

News is now to hand of the ending of route 20 as seen in the picture below.

Picture by David Beynon.

A number of interesting pictures from various readers are included.

The difference in the seating can be seen, a somewhat better than the orange and blue of the standard buses.
The interior of 11236 is seen in these pictures from Gavin Francis taken on October 13th.

Another unusual working on October 13th when 10787 was caught in the lens of Ciaran Bird with a number 1 service.

New 11233 and 11234 are showing on the www.bustimes.org  site for SCO. However they do not seem to have left Oxford as this was written.


We understand that former Norfolk Green E400 10054 has been in Peterborough although not used in service. It is due to be transferred from Cambridge to Bedford imminently. 

Ex megabus Astromega TD927 appears to have been at Rugby for Engineering Work, for at least last week. The latest "bustimes" shows it having been in service for the first time since October 7th. It went to Victoria on October 15th in the afternoon. 

Gordon Scott has provided pictures of the latest addition to the megabus fleet.

Taken, October 17th, at Perth's megabus launch of new named "Aberdeen Angus", 50411 - YX69LCA a Volvo B11R Plaxton Panorama megabus coach. Stagecoach West Scotland Cumbernauld based.

Exterior pictures showing clean lines of the exterior.

Lower deck interior pictures, very smart.

Upper deck interior pictures showing the similarity with the Astromega in layout.

All pictures of 50411 © Gordon Scott taken on October 17th 2019 at Perth.

 I received pictures of two megabus Interdeckers seen in Bulleid Way last week in what appears to be the revised livery. Note there is only megabus and no ".com"!!

One can only comment that it seems to be a cost saving exercise, since branding costs big money and, will in my opinion, have a reduced impact on the travelling public.
But, who am I to say as the world is a changing place and my experience and qualification (MCIM) counts for nothing these days.

Here is 54212 heading for departures at VCS giving a further idea of the revised branding.
I am told this is a Refreshment ! One is reminded of WIMPEY in the '60s when they painted nice coach yellow with WIMPEY in black !!!

54271 looks very bland when seen on October 14th by Gavin Francis.

The megabus depot in Rugby by Theo Freeman on October 14th.

"Wheely Wonka" 54608, with an M34 service in Oxford on October 13th by Mike Lewis.

This week sees a launch of "The Refreshment" of megabus for the foreseeable future. The launch is around Scotland and the West of England.

What do my readers think? Do write and tell me.

So it seems that Hamilton of Uxbridge are still filling in for megabus when OU65RHF was in BPR on October 10th by Gavin Francis.

Now delivered and being prepared for service are Volvo B11RLEs 50406-11.


50411 YX69LCA  Vo B11RLE YV3T2U828KA198670  Pn KD01/06  CH??/??Dt  10/2019  Western Buses 
50410 YX69LCC  Vo B11RLE YV3T2U824KA198732  Pn KD01/05  CH??/??Dt  10/2019  Western Buses 
50409 YX69LCE  Vo B11RLE YV3T2U825KA198674  Pn KD01/04  CH??/??Dt  10/2019  Western Buses 
50408 YX69LCF  Vo B11RLE YV3T2U821KA198736  Pn KD01/03  CH??/??Dt  10/2019  Western Buses 
50407 YX69LCG  Vo B11RLE YV3T2U823KA198656  Pn KD01/02  CH??/??Dt  10/2019  Western Buses 
50406 YX69LCJ  Vo B11RLE YV3T2U827KA197994  Pn KD01/01  CH??/??Dt  10/2019  Western Buses 


50406-09/11 are reported as being at Cumbernauld (Stagecoach West Scotland) with 50410 at Rugby (Stagecoach Midlands) .

Megabusplus Volvo B7R coaches 53601 and 53602 have been sold to Mark Bland Travel

Smaller operators and London developments

An Original Tour tri-axle VXE734 turns from BPR on October 10th by Gavin Francis. Nice branding!

A London Eye special using RML2713 owned by Premium Transport on October 10th by Gavin Francis.
Note the use of the Union Jack or part of it !

I cannot trace the current owner but this coach was new to Peake of Pontypool seen on October 10th by Gavin Francis.
This coach was found parked at the sports ground in Horspath Road. 

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