South Yorkshire – Albion Valkyrie – EWX 569 – 60

South Yorkshire - Albion Valkyrie - EWX 569 - 60
Photo taken by R. F. Mack

South Yorkshire Motors
Albion Valkyrie CX13
Pickering B24F

No 60 one of three vehicles bodied by Pickering of Wishart, parked outside the South Yorkshire Garage in Cornmarket Pontefract.
These were used often as duplicates on the long Doncaster-Leeds service sometimes not all the way from Doncaster. If the normal double decker was getting full a phone call to the garage and a duplicate would be waiting at the Fox and Hounds Thorpe Audlin, in fact just opposite the garage from where South Yorkshire was founded by the Winder family in 1926. Also on the early morning ‘Paddy’s’ Colliery specials.
I remember No 60 well as it was my school bus in the 1950’s a short service from Thorpe Audlin to Whitwood Technical Collage at Whitwood. No matter what the weather it never failed to arrive more often than not staffed by two members of the garage team. Most of South Yorkshire mechanics were licensed drivers and conductors so they could be called on at short notice.
After withdrawn in 1957 it went like most withdrawn South Yorkshire’s to Double Two Shirt Company in Wakefield where it was used for several more years as staff transport.

Photograph and Copy contributed by Brian Lunn


Ideal Service – Gilford 168 OT – YG 7518

YG 7518

Ideal Service (R Taylor & Sons)
Gilford 168 OT
??? 32

This superb vehicle was supplied new to R Taylo & Sonsr, t/a Ideal Service, Cudworth, in May 1934. PSVC lists show this to be a Gilford 168 OT, chassis number 12181. It is shown as being a thirtytwo-seater of unknown make. I suspect that the destination aperture and domed peak will be sufficient to lead the OBP sleuths to a simple identification of the coach-builder responsible. This was with showman J Heyes of Norwich by 1950 and moved again in 1958 to WH Smith (non PSV), Salford.

Photograph and Copy contributed by Les Dickinson

05/12/17 – 14:14

Love seeing pictures of old Gilfords. Have connection with them through my grandfather who test drove the chassis when they were built in Bellfield Works, High Wycombe around 1930.

Andrew Stevens

07/12/17 – 08:45

Yes, I recall seeing a few of them when I used to tour the showmen’s vehicles at funfairs. Does someone know how the Gruss springs worked?

Chris Hebbron

08/12/17 – 07:12

About halfway down on the following web page is a description and picture of a Gilford, possibly a 168OT, of Ideal Service, Cudworth, and it is suggested that it might be YG 7518. Clicking on the thumbnail picture gets a slightly bigger view, which shows several differences from the fairground machine, notably the angular front destination indicator and the much lower build of the side panelling. If it is, indeed, the same vehicle, then these modifications might have been undertaken later in the life of the machine to modernise its appearance.

Roger Cox

09/12/17 – 07:35

Roger, in his book ‘Independents in Western Yorkshire’ Neville Mercer writes that both Taylor and Wray had one Gilford each, the Wray one being registered HE 5684. I think the one in your link is more likely to be that of H Wray and it looks shorter than the one above but apparently their seating capacities were the same at 32.

Chris Barker

10/12/17 – 06:22

I am sure that you are right, Chris. The vehicle on the svvs site is clearly different from YG 7518, and must be the Wray example.

Roger Cox

11/12/17 – 06:57

The one registered HE 5684 is shown in PSVC lists as chassis 11668, also a 168OT with 32-seat body of unknown make and delivered new in April 1932 to H.Wray (Ideal)

Les Dickinson

12/12/17 – 08:39

To answer Chris H’s last question, I have no personal knowledge of Gruss air springs, but have found which is the patent description registered in the USA in 1924. I haven’t had the patience to read through all the print with its OCR errors, but the images give the general idea!

Geoff Pullin


East Yorkshire – Leyland Panther – JRH 323E – 823

East Yorkshire - Leyland Panther - JRH 323E - 823

East Yorkshire
Leyland Panther PSUR1/2R
Weymann Topaz II

The Panther and Panther Cub were Leyland Motors’ rear underfloor-engined offerings during the mid- to late-1960’s. By this time AEC had been taken over and its Swift model shared the same chassis as the Panther, each using their own engines (O600/O680 and AH505/691 respectively), the Panther having a front mounted radiator, whilst the Swift’s was at the rear. Both bus (with a stepped chassis frame) and coach (with a high, straight frame) were offered, the Swift also being offered with a constant-mesh gearbox in place of the more usual semi-automatic. The shorter Panther Cub – originally introduced to meet the requirements of Manchester CT – had a shorter rear overhang and of necessity had to feature the smaller O400 engine. An equivalent shorter Swift was offered with the AH505 engine only.
Several operators – both municipal and company, and some overseas – bought the Panther and Panther Cub in their bus form, and operated them with varying degrees of success, many having relatively short lives mainly due to bodywork deficiencies. The coach version was relatively uncommon though, the largest operator probably being Seamark’s of Bedfordshire, along with Skill’s of Nottingham.
East Yorkshire took 24 Panthers and 17 Panther Cubs. The Panthers consisted 15 buses, 4 DP’s and 5 coaches – but all based on the PSUR1/2R coach chassis. The second batch of three coaches had Plaxton Panorama bodies, but the first pair (823/824) had very rare Weymann Topaz II C44F coachwork.
Here 823 is seen emerging from the company’s Anlaby Road, Hull premises in 1972.The pair were repainted into the NBC corporate white livery in 1973, but were to pass to the NBC’s vehicle cannibalisation centre at Bracebridge Heath, near Lincoln in 1976 to be stripped for spares, after which the remains were sold to Pickersgill & Laverick, the Carlton breakers.

Photograph and Copy contributed by John Stringer

29/11/17 – 08:24

A Willowbrook DP-bodied PSU3 of 1962 also in view.

Mark Evans

30/11/17 – 08:14

Not a bad looking coach but a bit let down by the rather oversized front grille.

Philip Halstead

01/12/17 – 06:53

Good point, Philip. One expects something better from Weymann.This is a touch vulgar.

David Wragg

02/12/17 – 07:30

I think it’s unlikely that the Topaz II was designed by Weymann, and even more unlikely that it was built by them, since the factory had been closed for 18 months by the time it was delivered. Blame MCW.

Peter Williamson

02/12/17 – 07:31

Can you see that the outline of the grille is basically Duple 1963-1965 (Bella Vega/Vega Major)? By this time, of course, Weymann no longer existed. It is strictly speaking a MCW body.

David Oldfield

13/12/17 – 08:00

Maybe a bit of a BET Group thread here; EYMS with Panther buses and a few coaches, similar to PMT with Roadliners. I wonder how reliable the Panthers were? Would they be used on extended tours? The zig zag flash on the body side forward of the rear wheel arch looks strange and as already commented the front is rather bland with its unappealing grille.

Ian Wild

13/12/17 – 09:48

I took a photo of another coach in Ilfracombe whilst on holiday in 1969 and there is one of these Panthers parked up in the background, so it seems likely they were used on extended tours. I’m very surprised now that I didn’t photograph the Panther also.

John Stringer


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Old Bus Photos from Saturday 25th April 2009 to Thursday 14th December 2017