Old Bus Photos

London Transport – Leyland REC – FXT 122 – CR16

London Transport - Leyland REC - FXT 122 - CR16

London Transport
1939
Leyland REC
London Transport B20F

FXT 122 is a Leyland REC with LPTB B20F bodywork. She dates from 1939 and is seen at Longcross, Chobham, on one of those occasions that "Wisley" wasn’t at Wisley. In the Jenkinson listing of 1978, the REC is translated as Rear Engined Cub, which may or may not be correct. According to Ian Smiths London Transport website the CR in the fleet number stood for Cub Rear

Photograph and Copy contributed by Pete Davies


31/12/15 – 13:00

I believe the vehicle is rear engined and was the first rear engine PCV class.
I thought they were AEC rather than Leyland but would not wager any money on it.
The styling is Q related I think and was the Q single decker the first inclined mid-engined PCV?

Having looked on the internet it seems I would have lost my money as all references seem to be Leyland

Roger Burdett


31/12/15 – 13:02

FXT 110

I’ve been waiting for one of these to come up, here is a shot for the other side.

Mr Anon


01/01/16 – 07:04

Sorry, Roger. Definitely a Leyland. Perhaps even AEC weren’t brave enough!

Pete Davies


01/01/16 – 07:05

What was the gear selection system on these vehicles. Were they manual or semi-automatic. Also, were they one-man operated or crew. Two very interesting photos.

Norman Long


01/01/16 – 10:56

I cadged a brief ride that day at Longcross and I’m sure that the gearbox was a conventional 4-speed. The engine (indirect injection) sounded remarkably like a Perkins P4, with that characteristic combustion tinkle, and it has the same bore and stroke. The rear hubs fooled me: I guessed they must be double-reduction, but apparently they house universal joints at the outer end of each cardan shaft, as the axle is arranged on the de Dion principle, which doesn’t give independent suspension but does cut down unsprung weight by mounting the differential either on the chassis or in unit with the gearbox.
In the late forties on a visit to my aunt and uncle’s at Ealing, Mx, somewhere near Brentford(?) from the window of another bus I saw one of these vehicles, which looked very strange—even slightly creepy—to my 8-or-9-year old eyes.
Fine restoration job, and thanks to the owners for saving another rare bus, full of innovation and individuality.

Ian Thompson


02/01/16 – 06:45

Ian is correct in his description of the CR, which was built at Leyland’s Kingston factory (actually in Ham) which had once produced Sopwith aircraft. The six cylinder indirect injection engine, which had been developed for the later production Cub KPO3, had a capacity of 4.7 litres developing 65 bhp, and it was mounted longitudinally at the rear of the chassis frame. The radiator was also located at the rear. The engine cover inside the vehicle was equipped as a luggage rack. The gearbox was the standard Leyland four speed "silent third" – sliding mesh 1st and 2nd, helical 3rd. Given the limitations conferred upon the passenger capacity of this small vehicle by the engine layout, it was particularly galling for the LPTB to have to adopt a space wasteful front end design similar to that of the contemporary underfloor engined TF (Tiger Flat) Green Line coach model. Had the doorway been located in the logical position ahead of the front axle (as was the 5Q5 version of the AEC Q) then the Metropolitan Police would have insisted upon an open, doorless entrance. It is often stated that the production of the CR was curtailed by the outbreak of war, but this is not the case. Always prone to over ordering, the LPTB originally decided that it required 73 examples in addition to the prototype. Having redone the sums, this was cut to 58, and then to 48. All, except the 1937 prototype, were delivered after the start of the war, the last arriving in December 1939. Many of them saw service in the first year or so of the war, but then went into storage in 1942. Several went into storage in 1939 from new. They began to reappear in 1946 when their original function had largely been usurped by larger buses. Instead they were employed on Central Area routes with conductors to meet the pressures of post war demand, and proved woefully unequal to the task. Breakdowns were frequent and spares in short supply. By the early 1950s they had all gone.

Roger Cox


02/01/16 – 08:50

Another bus spotters’ delight…….and operators’ nightmare! Thx for your usual detailed information, Roger, especially the gearbox information which I’ve always wondered about and which even the London Bus Museum website doesn’t explain. Although Merton Garage had the odd one allocated to it (Sutton didn’t, to my knowledge), I never saw one around my area at all.
The Town & Country Act of 1947 rather ‘did’ for expansion of London (and other cities), where unbridled ‘ribbon’ development stopped, handicapped, in any case, by a lack of building materials. The ‘Northern Heights’ extension of the Tube’s Northern Line, plus some other Tube bits and pieces, were never completed and the CR’s intended feeder services never expanded.

Chris Hebbron


02/01/16 – 17:51

According to the Ian’s Bus Stop website, Merton (AL) did get at least 4 CRs in 1946/7 – including one in green livery – mainly for route 88, and Sutton (A) at least two for the 213 and latterly 93.
The 1 1/2 deck Leyland Cubs designed for the ‘inter station’ route and a number of single deck buses (including some pre-war Green Line coaches) also saw central bus service (on routes with a double deck allocation) around this time.
All were crew operated – the OMO agreement for central buses had by then lapsed, and the practical (and industrial relations) complications of having one or two OMO buses on a crew route would have been a bit too much to handle.
Operationally, I understand that the single deckers only ran on ‘spreadover’ workings (i.e. peak hours only) and I would have thought that if any garage had more buses than crews on any day, the single deckers would have been left in the garage.
Hired in coaches followed in 1947, and new Bristol Ks diverted from ‘Tillings’ companies followed in 1948.

Jon


03/01/16 – 06:11

Correction to my earlier comment! What I glimpsed at Brentford (?) all those years ago was probably not a CR but a TF, whose existence I’d forgotten all about until reading Roger’s reference to it. I recall the mystery bus as being of normal length. As I know practically nothing of what LPTB buses ran on which routes, perhaps someone—Chris H, perhaps—could say whether TFs did or didn’t go through Brentford. The combination of 8.6-litre Leyland engine and epicyclic gearbox in the TF must have made for a very tuneful ride.

Ian Thompson


03/01/16 – 10:43

CR’s and TF’s did have a generic likeness, Ian, and green CR’s did run in Central services and vice versa at times, adding to the confusion. The TF’s ran the Green Line services and you will be interested in that the 701 ran from Gravesend to Ascot, passing through Brentford, from 1946 to 1975, as did the 702 from Gravesend to Sunningdale from 1946 to 1973. I did travel on a few TF’s and they did exude an aura of understated luxury.

Chris Hebbron


06/01/16 – 16:37

Thanks, Chris H, for confirmation that TF passed through Brentford. The vehicle through whose window I snatched that one childhood sighting will have been a trolleybus on the 655 route. Incidentally, my only LT ride (on the long back seat for 5 upstairs where you can look down onto the staircase) was with the same Ealing aunt, and I’m sure the bus said "Hammersmith" on the destination box. Chiming gearbox and snuffly petrol engine that seemed to backfire occasionally; six wheels; straight staircase; what more could any bus-mad kid wish for? Up to what date could that have been? Thanks in advance for any info.

Ian Thompson


07/01/16 – 06:08

Probably 1949.
According to Ken Glazier’s book ‘Routes to Recovery’ (about London Transport in the immediate post war years) the last double deck LTs were withdrawn in January 1950, the last examples running from Upton Park garage on route 40 (which didn’t go anywhere near Hammersmith)
Apart from the last scheduled allocations, a number were spread around garages to supplement the scheduled allocation until late 1949.
From Ian Armstrong’s ‘London Bus Routes’ website –
Hammersmith (Riverside) garage had a fairly substantial allocation of LTs on routes 11 and 17 (London Bridge – Shepherds Bush – no relation to the later north London incarnations of the route number) and 73 until 1949.
Mortlake’s routes 9 and 73 had LTs until 1948 and 1949 respectively (some at Mortlake were initially replaced by green RTs as deliveries had got out of step with needs).

Jon


07/01/16 – 06:10

Many LT’s were based at Leyton, Loughton and Potters Bar Garages, on your side of London, Ian. LT’s mainly left those garages around 1947/48, but were still to be found in decreasing numbers ALL around London until the final deathnell came in February 1950. Even two of the first 150 open-staircase ones survived to the end by then some 20 years old. These were due to replaced in 1942, had the war not intervened. I had a lucky escape from an open-staircase one as a baby. An aunt of mine was climbing the stairs with me in her arms, when she slipped and lost hold of me. A passer-by at the rear of the bus, by chance, caught me in the nick of time. Of all the LT’s, my favourite was the last ones made, in 1931, called Bluebirds. See here: http://tinyurl.com/zllt7hk

Chris Hebbron


13/01/16 – 06:02

Thanks, Jon and Chris H, for the information on LT routes and dates.
Very nearly having my school cap blown off on the stairs of open-staircase Titan Reading 36 (RD 777) seemed exciting at the time, but that hardly compares with Chris’s extraordinary rescue!
Thanks also for the Bluebird link. LT741 is a very rationally-designed and handsome vehicle, and the superb interior shots answered all sorts of questions. Pity that no Bluebirds survived, but we can say that of a host of fascinating vehicles that live on only in tantalising photographs.

Ian Thompson


 

Quick links to the  -  Comments Page  -  Contact Page  -  Home Page

 


 

London Transport – Leyland Cub – CLX 548 – C111

CLX 548

London Transport
1936
Leyland Cub SKPZ2
Park Royal RC18F

CLX 548 is a Leyland Cub SKPZ2 and dates from 1936. New to London Transport with fleet number C111, she has Park Royal C18F bodywork in what used to be called an ‘observation coach’ style. Some people call this body layout as HDC18F while others call it RC18F. This view was taken at Southsea on 9 June 1985. I’ve never seen her since.

Photograph and Copy contributed by Pete Davies


09/10/15 – 07:29

Lovely photograph! If only more observation coaches survived, especially the elegant Whitson versions of 1948-52. The correct body code for observation coaches is "RC". "HD" refers to a Crellin-Duplex half-decker with a continuous roof line and interweaving compartments on two levels. Anybody who describes observation coaches as "HD" clearly hasn’t understood the PSV Circle body code system (and, sadly, this includes some compilers of published fleet histories who SHOULD know better, so I understand confusion on the subject!). Airport coaches such as the 4RF4s of BEA and the similar Leylands at Manchester are also correctly prefixed with an "R" as this actually stands for"raised floor-line" rather than "raised roof".

Neville Mercer


09/10/15 – 07:29

Both this, and sister CLX 550 are listed as survivors in the PSV Circle’s 2015 edition of Preserved Buses. But they both seem extremely camera shy. I’ve never seen either of them in real life.

Petras409


09/10/15 – 17:25

The non-LT livery was used on these vehicles, because they operated the night-time Interstation service around Central London, where their large luggage capacity was invaluable. There is some argument about the seating capacity, being also quoted as both 19 and 20! If memory serves, they were replaced by ST’s during the war, no doubt to increase passenger capacity.
Not only have these buses (bar one) disappeared, but so also has our 24-hour rail network!

Chris Hebbron


13/10/15 – 06:30

Some photos of this taken last year here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/rw3

Paul Turner


13/10/15 – 06:30

The tube is to run 24hr from later this year and you will find many more night buses (although no night trams or trolleys) in London than when CLX 548 was built.

Stephen Allcroft


13/10/15 – 08:58

LT inner 1

LT inner 2

Here are internal photos of C107, showing 4×2 seats (8 passengers) in the lower saloon and 4×2 (8 passengers) and 1×4 (4 passengers) in the upper, total 20. It would seem that, although the rear seat would seat 5, it was designated for 4.

Here is a photo of sister (just) survivor CLX549, How folk can let this sort of thing moulder into dust is beyond me. Windows open and all!
https://www.flickr.com/photos/rw3-497alh/15006248806/in/photostream/

Chris Hebbron


14/10/15 – 07:19

One worry when the 24-hour tube services start (commencing I believe on a few lines to start with) is when will the track cleaning and maintenance get done? Some years ago there was a programme on tv about the night staff maintaining the Underground and it was amazing the amount of dust, fluff and other debris that accumulated each day on the track and tunnel walls. A team of ‘fluffies’ were employed each night to walk the tracks after the power had been switched off, simply to clear it all away. This it was said, was on safety grounds, not least to help reduce the risk of fires. I sincerely hope the powers that be are aware of this, especially in these days of cost-cutting in the public sector..

Brendan Smith


14/10/15 – 16:12

Yes, Brendan, I remember that programme. Don’t for a moment think that such realities might have entered the heads of the present management, though!

Pete Davies


14/10/15 – 16:13

I double-checked on the TfL website and it reinforced my thoughts that this 24 hour service is only on Friday/Saturday nights and, initially, not on all tube lines. Maybe with the backlog of maintenance behind them, one assumes that they can deal with doing it in the remaining time in the rest of the week.

Chris Hebbron


15/10/15 – 07:13

For the record, the very sad picture of the Cub mouldering away somewhere in Epsom isn’t C112 (CLX 549), but is C113 (CLX 550). At least, that’s what the PSV Circle says and I am inclined to believe them.
But, thank goodness that C111 (CLX 548) has been rescued and returned to the road, so that she can be seen and appreciated by all. Well done, Mr Cross, the owner.

Petras409


16/10/15 – 06:05

First of all, well done whoever took the interior shots. Exterior shots are always the most important, but it is very helpful sometimes to be able to see inside, especially with such an unusual layout.
I remember seeing a BTC film many years ago ago about night maintenance and cleaning in the deep tube tunnels. The Friday and Saturday night operation will mean a very heavy accumulation of dirt for Sunday night, and I wouldn’t mind betting that Sunday night is the peak period for absenteeism. All it would need is a spark and given the strong winds that blow through the tunnels because of the pressures created by moving trains in tight spaces, and one could soon have a fire out of control.

David Wragg


 

Quick links to the  -  Comments Page  -  Contact Page  -  Home Page

 


 

London Transport – AEC Regent I – AXM 693 – STL441

London Transport - AEC Regent I - AXM 693 - STL441

London Transport
1934
AEC Regent I
London Transport H26/30R

AXM 693 is an AEC Regent (Regent I in some listings but not in all of them) from 1934, new to London Transport with fleet number STL441. Her LPTB body has H56R seating layout and she now resides at Brooklands, following the relocation of the collection from Cobham. We see her during the gathering at Wisley Airfield on 11 April 2010.

Photograph and Copy contributed by Pete Davies


10/07/15 – 06:56

Originally this bus would have been marketed simply as the AEC Regent – no one would have bothered to state ‘Regent I’ until after the improved Regent II had appeared. The same thing happens with monarchs – Charles I was never known as Charles I in his lifetime.

David Wragg


10/07/15 – 06:57

This batch of early STLs had Daimler preselective gearboxes from new, but their petrol engines were replaced with 7.7 diesels just before the outbreak of WW2. I lived in the Croydon area up to the age of four in 1946 (and then again from 1952, though by then the STL was a rarer beast). I remember travelling around south London on buses of this type, and didn’t much like them because of the high level of the lower saloon windows that seriously impeded the outward view of a small boy. In my firmly held opinion of that time, the Chiswick designers had got their priorities all wrong, though I conceded that my services wouldn’t have been available as a consultant when they were built in 1934.

Roger Cox


11/07/15 – 07:23

Thank you for your thoughts about the "order of succession" David. I had guessed that to be the case here, and – one has to suppose – with that wonderful range of products from the Dennis Brothers.

Pete Davies


11/07/15 – 07:24

Morden, then in Surrey, was my stomping ground in the 40’s and 50’s, full of utility ‘D’s and pre-war RT’s. STL’s only appeared on the 118 from Clapham (then) to Raynes Park. I did have two aunts who lived in Norbury and my mum and I would trundle round there, which made a pleasant change from the usual bus types. I agree about the lower deck windows, but usually persuaded my mum to go upstairs, despite the ‘fug’!
Many of these early ‘non-rounded front’ STL’s were overhauled and put back into service with full blinds, briefly, when the last tram conversion was brought forward and merged with the penultimate conversion stage, in 1952. And very smart they looked, too! They were the only STL’s to acquire full blinds post-war. I think it was done to provide passengers with the fullest information on the tram-replacement routes, which didn’t usually coincide exactly with the tram ones and had different route numbers, too.

Chris Hebbron


11/07/15 – 07:24

The excellent ‘Ian’s Bus Stop’ website states that STL441 formed one of fifty ‘leaning back’ STL’s which were delivered in 6/34 without engines, then fitted with ‘hand-me-down’ petrol ones from the LT class vehicles, which were being converted to diesel power. AEC’s diesels were, at that time, too big to fit into the STL’s, hence the swap-over. It had a Wilson pre-selector gearbox and was either fitted with a fluid flywheel at that time, or retro-fitted with one in the October. It eventually got its 7.7litre diesel engine in 5/39. Mann Egerton rebuilt its body in 12/47 and it was withdrawn in 9/52. It was sold, in 2/53, for preservation in Holland. It was repatriated from the preservers in 1975 by LBPG and stored at Cobham, being fully restored in 2007. It still bears the wartime ‘scar’ of a two-piece platform rear window, which most LT buses bore, to make the glass, in time of shortage, go further. All-in-all, an interesting life.

Chris Hebbron


11/07/15 – 14:05

I am also a Dennis fan, Pete. A company that deserved greater success but which could also be slow to innovate, which is why it lost the single deck market once underfloor engines became the standard. The Loline was a terrific bus, especially in Aldershot & District livery and specification.
Returning to the point and looking again at the STL, this particular vehicle almost had a provincial (with a small ‘p’) outline.

David Wragg


 

Quick links to the  -  Comments Page  -  Contact Page  -  Home Page

 


 

All rights to the design and layout of this website are reserved     Old Bus Photos does not set or use Cookies but Google Analytics will set four see this

Old Bus Photos from Saturday 25th April 2009 to Sunday 14th February 2016