Old Bus Photos

Greenslades Tours – AEC Reliance – FFJ 13D

Greenslades - AEC Reliance - FFJ 13D

Greenslades Tours 
AEC Reliance 2MU4RA
Harrington C40F

Sadly the very last Harrington body to be built, No 3218, was this Grenadier C40F example on an AEC Reliance 2MU4RA chassis for Greenslades Tours of Exeter registration No FFJ 13D. This photo was taken on the 24th April 1966 at the British Coach Rally on Madeira Drive Brighton whilst the Concours judges were making their inspection. The elegant lines of the body and the restrained but attractive livery are even 48 years later a lesson todays designers and colour stylists might well learn lessons from, but being a cynical 75 year old I doubt it will happen.

Photograph and Copy contributed by Diesel Dave

15/09/14 – 07:02

Can’t better Dave’s comments – and nearby were the Devon General 2U3RAs as well. I’m all for Van Hool/DAFs, Setras and Scanias but oh for a world where there were up to date, quality AECs, Bristols, Leylands and Guys with Burlingham, Harrington, (real) Plaxton, Weymann and Roe bodies sitting on them. There is no excuse for selling the family silver – having things built on the continent or in the far east because wage rates are cheaper. What about a bit of pride in our own abilities. [The Germans and the French would not let it happen!]

David Oldfield

15/09/14 – 07:03

This was indeed a very attractive livery, featuring an unusual shade of green. The designation 2MU4RA denotes a "crash" gearbox, which seemed a backward step after most Reliances had synchromesh gearboxes.
The boot lid is interesting. I remember that Yelloway always specified two piece boot doors hinged from the sides to avoid people bumping their heads on the top hinged flaps more commonly used in the fifties and sixties. This design could be an attempt to avoid the problem.
The Grenadier body was a development of the better known "Cavalier" and to me was even more attractive. I agree, Dave, it is so sad that Harrington ceased production of coach bodies, at a time when their products seemed to be more popular than ever.

Don McKeown

15/09/14 – 12:00

The parallel lift boot door was a Harrington patent device, more usually used for side lockers because of often restricted space in coach stations.
It was obviously optional, as witness the side lockers on this example, and presumably cost more.
I wonder why Plaxtons didn’t take over this patent?

Andrew Goodwin

15/09/14 – 12:00

The last sentence of Diesel Dave’s caption mirrors my thoughts precisely, and I am three years even further down "Cynical Avenue" and proud of it !!

Chris Youhill

16/09/14 – 07:57

Sadly, Chris, I am but a babe in arms – but a cynical nearly 62 year old!

David Oldfield

16/09/14 – 07:58

The Harrington Grenadier was the last coach body with a curved window line, a peculiarly British trend which began in the 1930s. There were plans for it to be replaced by a development of the Legionnaire if Harrington had stayed in business.

Peter Williamson

16/09/14 – 07:58

As Andrew says the parallel lift mechanism was indeed a Harrington patent and some coaches I drove had a plate stating that fact. Regarding the side locker doors in a larger photo they are of the parallel lift type, I think they look as if they are hinged is because they were in the locked position which was achieved by lifting as normal and then pulling the top of the panel outward presumably to prevent accidents to fitters working underneath. Similar mechanisms can be seen on modern, but foreign, coaches although electrically powered.

Diesel Dave


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



Wakefields Motors – AEC Reliance – FT 9000 – 200

Wakefields Motors - AEC Reliance - FT 9000 - 200
Copyright Unknown

Wakefields Motors
AEC Reliance MU3RV
Weymann C41F

I’ve recently been to an Historic vehicle rally at Seaburn, and as usual I came back with a load of photos, some I took and others I bought. But I managed to get hold of one that has eluded me for a while, and that is a colour photo of one of Wakefields Weymann Fanfares. Isn’t that simply glorious, understated, simple, and elegant. Modern designers take note!
I have posted one of these vehicles before but I think the colour shot warrants a further posting. You can view my previous posting and comments at the following link FT 9002 – 202

Photograph and Copy contributed by Ronnie Hoye

28/08/14 – 05:47

Lets raise (another) cheer for the Fanfare – or possibly a fanfare for the Fanfare? Super photo. Obviously I’m all for the original and best Reliance version but what else was on offer? Guy Arab LUF, Leyland Leopard (or Tiger Cub). You really couldn’t lose, whichever version you went for.

David Oldfield

28/08/14 – 10:35

As you will know, David, Wakefields had six on a Reliance chassis, and parent company, Northern had ten on a Guy Arab LUF with Gardner 6HLW engines. Northern specified a lower capacity 37 seat version, at first the were used on extended tour work and spent much of their time away from their home base. Off season, they were frequently to be found earning their keep on the Trans Pennine Liverpool Express route. This was pre motorway days, and any east-west route to Liverpool was a long hard slog. Mechanically, they were well up to the job, and some would argue they offered a degree of passenger comfort that has never been matched. At busy times, they were often joined by their Wakefields cousins, who, along with their Percy Main crews, were drafted in as duplicates on the route. As for longevity, in 1964, all 16 were refurbished by Plaxton, the AEC’s were withdrawn at the end of the 1968 season, and the Guy’s at the end of 1969. It’s such a pity that none seem to have survived into preservation.

Ronnie Hoye

01/09/14 – 08:45

I’ll happily raise another cheer for the Fanfare any day. I’ll not only endorse Ronnie’s comment about passenger comfort, but for the LUFs on the Tyne-Tees-Mersey express I’ll raise an extra cheer for musical entertainment!

Peter Williamson


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



Sheffield Corporation – AEC Regent I – DWB 27 – 27

Sheffield Corporation - AEC Regent I - DWB 27 - 27
Copyright Unknown

Sheffield Corporation
AEC Regent I
Weymann H55R

Quite a few of Sheffield’s Regent 1 intake of 1937/8 with both original and rebuilt bodies survived up to around 1960 with the majority being withdrawn in the late 1940’s and early 1950’s. One such survivor was No. 27 registration DWB 27, a Weymann bodied H55R example. This machine was new in 1937 and survived until 1958 in original form. To achieve 21 years in normal service in Sheffield’s hilly terrain was no mean feat and unsurprisingly at the time of withdrawal, 27 was one of Sheffield’s oldest service buses albeit probably mainly used on peak time extras and school runs in later life.

Sheffield Corporation - AEC Regent I - EWB 657 - 357
Copyright Unknown

More Regent 1 examples of a somewhat more modest lifespan were No. 357 registration EWB 657 and 353 registration EWB 653 both of 1938 vintage with Cravens H55R bodywork pictured here in 1953 at Sheffield Midland Station between duties. I am unsure whether 353 had been modernised in some way as there is a difference in appearance between the vehicles and I have another image of 353 showing sliding toplights on both decks of a later era than the drop down windows of other Cravens vehicles of the batch.

Photograph and Copy contributed by John Darwent

21/08/14 – 09:08

With the exception of the war-time Corporation (Queens Road) bodied Regents, these were the only pre-war Regents not bodied by Weymann. I was eight in 1960 but do not remember seeing any pre-war AECs in service – apart, possibly, from the Roe re-bodies. 657 is a Cravens in original condition, 653 at the very least has a modified front if not totally rebuilt.
This area in front of Midland Station was until the early 1950s used by C fleet routes (out of town) and possibly some B fleet as well. Buses awaiting service were parked, like 653 and 657, against the pavement which divided the area from the road.

David Oldfield

21/08/14 – 10:57

Lovely photos of the Regent I which always make my heart beat a little faster! Why is there a space fillet between body and rad on 27? Was a slightly shorter body fitted later or what? I imagine it wasn’t re-engined with a Gardner 6LW engine!!!
Photo 2 shows the typical unmatching front wings, so prevalent at this time! I also notice that the matching height headlamps lf 353 do not apply to 657.

Chris Hebbron

21/08/14 – 12:45

Sheffield continued to specify the 8.8 litre engines after the "7.7" had become standard. Maybe this explains the space fillet.

David Oldfield

21/08/14 – 15:28

FWA 900
Copyright Unknown

I think the radiator fillet was a general feature on all the Regent 1’s Chris, even the Roe rebuilds.

John Darwent

22/08/14 – 06:42

The extended bonnet as seen on these Sheffield Regents was standard for the 8.8 litre engine. This originally was the A165 indirect injection unit, but later, under pressure from the LPTB, became the A180 direct injection motor with Leyland style pot cavity pistons. The 6LW was even longer than the AEC 8.8, as may be seen on pictures of the London LT types and Huddersfield Regals so fitted. I suspect that the Sheffield examples were of the 8.8 indirect injection variety. Incidentally, I am intrigued by the picture of the two Regents parked side by side. How on earth did the driver of EWB 653 get out of the cab?

Roger Cox

22/08/14 – 08:20

Aye, there’s a bit of Sheffield black magic there, Roger.
The Roe re-build bodies replaced Cravens bodies – which were, I would guess, of suspect build quality. This might also explain the modification/rebuild of 653.

David Oldfield

22/08/14 – 18:11

Good point re the driver’s door Roger. I have examined the original photo taken with my highly unsophisticated Brownie 127 way back when and there is no trickery. Another photo of 353 reveals an ordinary opening door – no sliding conversion – of course, if the cab had similar characteristics to my old Austin Mini, then the driver could have exited through the floorpan!

John Darwent

22/08/14 – 18:11

Well, either he got out before EWB657 reversed into place (people sometimes do that to me in supermarket car parks!) – or, to misquote the famous Yorkshire tale, "Ee, ‘e were thin!"

Stephen Ford

23/08/14 – 16:32

CWJ 406
Copyright Unknown

Here’s an eclectic selection of Sheffield Corporation gems dominated by Regent 1’s, seen on the Pond Street bus park in the early 50’s.
306 – 1938 Regent 1/Weymann CWJ 406
471 – 1941 Regent 1/Northern Counties HWA 51
496 – 1944 Daimler CWA6/Duple
    4 – 1938 All Leyland TD5c EWJ 304
438 – 1940 Regent 1/Weymann GWE 658
474 – 1942 All Leyland TD7 HWA 384

John Darwent

29/08/14 – 15:25

I used to live by Brammall Lane, but went to school at Anns Rd. Heeley. To go to school I had a choice of 33 Hemsworth, (Regent 3 Cravens bodywork), 34 Graves Park, (Regent 3 Northern Coachbuilders), 35 Hollythorpe Rise, (Regent 3 Weymann). All had pre selector gearbox.
However, there was a duplicate route 36 to Heeley Green. This was the original route of 1913, extended to Graves Park in 1926. You could have single, double decker’s or lowdeckers, pre or post war. It did not have a destination name, as these were all removed in WW2, & after that, there was no such route.
The reason I loved this route so much, was it had to make a steep hill start at Anns Road stop. If it was not a pre selector box but a crash box, I would stay on the bus to Heeley Green. They would set off in 1st, but by the time they engaged 2nd,the bus had come to a stop. They then repeated the process many times to get to the top of the hill. I chuckled inside, many of the conductors also, as the driver got more & more frustrated. It made me late for school. Of course I blamed the buses for making me late, but it was worth it.
Would someone explain how the pre selector box works please?

Andy Fisher

29/08/14 – 15:28

Andy To start with try this. it may be a bit slow to load.



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 21st December 2014