Old Bus Photos

Mansfield District – Bristol Lodekka LD6G – RAL 974 – 500

RAL 974_lr
Copyright Ian Wild

Mansfield District Traction Company Limited
1954
Bristol Lodekka LD6G
ECW H33/25R

I always liked the Bristol Lodekka with the original long grille-thought it gave the bus a more purposeful appearance. A chance visit to Mansfield in August 1968 found this example which appeared to be in excellent condition for its age.

Photograph and Copy contributed by Ian Wild


29/06/11 – 13:03

In 1969 several of these early Mansfield Lodekkas moved north to West Riding to enable the ill fated Wulfrunians to be withdrawn They entered service in Mansfield green and were quickly joined by others from Midland General and Lincs. Later some twenty plus almost new FLFs came from Bristol to complete the exercise

Chris Hough


29/06/11 – 14:44

Ah! delight in Mansfield, one of my favourite places. Firstly I agree with Ian about the long grille Lodekka, I’ve always thought the same. Secondly, this is particularly interesting because it was Mansfield District’s first Lodekka, new in 1954, platform doors fitted in 1957. I’ve always tended to think of Mansfield District as a sort of Mansfield Corporation, with its history of tramway operation and lots of high frequency short distance services, a very good example of which was the 102 as shown. In 1964, the Saturday service was; first bus 4.40am then every 10mins until 9am then every 5mins until 6.20pm then every 10mins until 11pm (last) and this wasn’t the only service between Mansfield and Pleasley, a timetable wasn’t really necessary! I find it a little odd that this bus isn’t sporting a full blind display, Mansfield District, Midland General and Notts and Derby were normally very fastidious about such things and their inspectors would ‘have a word’ with the conductor if the blinds weren’t displayed perfectly! The correct display in the via box for the 102 would have been MANSFIELD CENTRE, CHESTERFIELD ROAD, PLEASLEY (some journeys carried on to New Houghton)
As Chris H rightly says, some of these vehicles were transferred to West Riding as Wulfrunian replacements and were apparently considered to be amongst the better ones so transferred, not surprising considering MDT/MGO’s excellent maintenance standards. Also unusual is that this vehicle carries no adverts of any sort and I think looks much better for it!

Chris Barker


30/06/11 – 05:29

I too much preferred the long radiator and the traditional Bristol shape of it to the later version, which always gave me the annoying impression of having been in a lower end collision and being amateurishly repaired by "chopping off the damaged bit and putting in a new straight lower shape." I also have an aversion, on all buses, to front square number plates with two rows of three characters – the normal long number plate with all characters in one line looks far tidier at the front and, in many cases, even at the back also.

Chris Youhill


30/06/11 – 05:35

This vehicle’s sister, RAL 976, did some sightseeing work here in Halifax, Nova Scotia in the early seventies, alongside an ex London RT, and at the time made a fine sight in its green livery, I think it had been with West Riding before export to Canada. It moved on years ago, to destination unknown, and I suppose it presumably could still exist, but more than likely has succumbed to the scrapman’s hammer by now.

Dave Careless


30/06/11 – 16:07

I am not at all surprised to observe the superb condition which the Mansfield Lodekka demonstrates! Ignoring any design preferences of individual enthusiasts, I struggle to define any ECW bodied vehicle as being "worn". Most would seem to be capable of completing a 40 year life cycle.
Undoubtedly the finest exponents of bus building which ever existed, the quality and innovation of which was, in my humble opinion, totally unmatched. It is to be greatly regretted that this wonderful company was allowed to disintegrate!
ECW bodies never failed to exude total quality, their obsolescence being defined simply in terms of "fashion".
I have no "axe to grind", and enjoy, as an enthusiast, other products than those from Lowestoft, but wonder if former professionals from within the industry are able to destroy this "illusion" of mine?

John Whitaker


01/07/11 – 05:19

Although I cannot fault the general impression of these vehicles, I was never that keen on the ‘hump’ below the driver’s cab, giving to me, at least, the impression that it had had a front-end shunt and was yet to be repaired!
AS Chris B says, the absence of adverts greatly enhances its looks. Were that they’d all been like this!

Chris Hebbron


25/07/11 – 21:01

The Photo of RAL 974 is not standing on the 102 Rank and as a driver for MDT I am suggesting that the vehicle will be driven round to Queen Street to duplicate the service 102 bus to Pleasley hence the via blind is left empty.

John Hellewell


I have put this comment on exact as I got it, I did not get the next to last word but had a good laugh when the penny dropped well done Mr A Non

15/08/11 – 13:01

old5oo thank you 44 sinse i drove her the fleet numbers500to 532 all back rsenders niceone

A Non


16/09/14 – 07:44

I used to be a driver for Mansfield District from 1968 and my father did fifty years for Mansfield it takes me back. I still am in the bus industry I’m a supervisor for West Coast Motors on the west coast of Scotland it was a good time at MDT. I was at Midland Travel as well.

Colin Steele


16/09/14 – 09:54

"ECW bodies never failed to exude total quality…"
Not quite, John. The B51 coach body was an absolute aesthetic and structural abomination, utilising large areas of unsupported glass fibre that simply collapsed in service. All the fittings were flimsy and the luggage boots leaked rainwater and road dirt. It was produced under the directives of the Stokes ‘led’ Leyland empire and so bad was it that it must have hastened the ultimate demise of ECW.

Roger Cox


16/09/14 – 12:08

Yes, but I think that it’s a given that any Stokes era history is a period not to savour and that John was thinking of "real" ECW in the same way that I differentiate between Leyland and British Leyland. You are absolutely right that the B51 was an abomination but its failings revolve around British Leyland trying to slap a body literally designed around a rear engined vehicle (the Bristol RELH) onto mid-engined designs without any thought to structural integrity. [Even the earlier, purer, versions on Leopards for SELNEC/GMT suffered similar problems but they were too embarrassed to mention it at the time.] Sadly, at the same time as the B51, Willowbrook offered its own abomination, the 003. Duple were not much better either and, as we all know, Plaxton eventually joined the slide into mediocrity or worse.

David Oldfield


17/09/14 – 07:13

I seem to recall that United took some Leopards with the plasticky B51 bodies for National Express work. The chassis did not have sufficient fixings to cater for the enormous boots required, worked themselves loose and at least one fell off, strewing luggage all over the motorway.

Chris Hebbron


19/09/14 – 07:03

None at all Chris. It was an unsupported boot. Originally the body was (semi) integral with the RE frame – and thus very rigid and strong. Here began its troubles.

David Oldfield


20/09/14 – 05:57

I wonder who dominated here, David O, engineers or accountants!

Chris Hebbron


20/09/14 – 09:27

No brainer Chris. Got to be accountants. Whenever there’s a choice between experts/professionals and accountants the outcome is chaos – just have a closer look at the accountants. You don’t have to look too far to see who is at fault.

David Oldfield


 

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Aldershot and District – Dennis Lance K4 – LOU 40 – 212

Aldershot & District - Dennis Lance K4 - LOU 40 - 212
Copyright Roger Cox

Aldershot and District Traction Company 
1953
Dennis Lance K4
East Lancs L28/28R

This picture was taken in Woodbridge Road, Guildford, about 1961, and shows one of the 32 "tin fronted" Dennis Lance K4 buses unique to the Aldershot and District Traction Company. The first 20 of these had East Lancs L28/28 bodywork of the type shown, and the final 12 were bodied by Weymann with a version of the Orion, again seating 56 with 28 on each deck. The Gardner 5LW engines in these buses were removed from withdrawn Lancets of 1940 vintage, but were rebuilt and updated to the latest specification to virtually new standard. As usual with A&D buses, these vehicles had five speed gearboxes. I never drove one of these, but I understand that, with their slow revving (1700 rpm) 94 bhp engines they were less than lively, and not popular with the Aldershot and District driving staff, who christened them "Lulus" from their registration letters. The motorcycle and sidecar combination overtaking the bus is entirely characteristic of those times and something that is never seen today. I cannot identify the make of motorbike, but it is certainly something of a veteran itself as it has girder type front forks.

Photograph and Copy contributed by Roger Cox

———

26/06/11 – 11:32

The same nickname was given by Samuel Ledgard staff to ex London RT LLU 803 – her thunder was somewhat stolen though by the later arrival of some RTLs with the same "Christian name."
Despite the cumbersome and leisurely progress of the A & D Dennis Lance I have to say that it is an extremely attractive vehicle indeed – the characterful destination display and the beautiful livery of that operator being the icing on the cake.

Chris Youhill

———

26/06/11 – 19:59

Aldershot and District always had a small engine policy, and it is difficult to understand why the Lance K4 should have been singled out by certain staff for a modest performance. The pre war Lances with the high set radiator style (as on the Lancet II and III) were delivered with Dennis four cylinder sixteen valve O4 engines of 6.5 litres giving 82 bhp. Most of these early Lances were later rebodied and refitted with 5LW engines, and the wartime Guy Arabs also had the 5LW powerplant. The first postwar ‘deckers were Lance K3s with the Dennis O6 of 100 bhp, and these were lively, smooth running buses, and the following K4s of the type shown above must have seemed much more sedate by comparison. Then came Lolines powered by the 6LW engine, and it is probable that, by a certain point in time and within the experience of some drivers, the Lance K4s were the only double deck buses in the fleet still using the 5LW. My experience of the K4 as a passenger indicated that its road performance was fully up to the general standard of the time.

Roger Cox

———

27/06/11 – 11:48

Happily, Tim Stubbs and Malcolm Spalding rescued sister ship A&D K4 220 some years ago, and it has been a regular at running days and other events for at least seventeen years. I’ve had the very good fortune to be on the driving rota, and it really a most characterful bus, with the reassuring thump of the 5LW and the unique 5-spd gearbox, with 1st, 2nd and 3rd sliding (not constant)mesh and preselective overdrive. The cab is not a model of comfort or convenience, but the steering is a joy. Brakes are vacuum over hydraulic, and seem to need frequent adjustment but are wonderfully progressive in action.
Seating is 28 on each deck. On top, counting from the front, the seats are for 4, 4, 3, 4, 3, 4, 3 and 3. Even on a 27-long body eight rows upstairs was still less common than seven on mid-fifties lowbridge bodies but—as on contemporary Roe lowbridge products—the back seat upstairs is set as far back as it can be without compromising staircase headroom, so there’s plenty of knee room between seats.
She’s admittedly slow in hilly country, but will do 48mph on the flat and on a well-chosen route puts the miles behind her surprising quickly.
Tim’s K3 of 1950, with the Dennis O6 engine, is 6" narrower and a foot shorter but is actually slightly heavier than the K4. Unlike the 5LW, the amazingly smooth O6 is a spinner, not a slogger. The difference in engine gives the two otherwise very similar vehicles a totally different character. The 5LW demands a well-adjusted clutch-stop, but the lighter flywheel of the O6 makes it unnecessary for upward changes—except 1st to 2nd on hills.
These two vehicles are wonderful survivals, and it’s a pity that none of the lightweight (and apparently very lively) Weymann Orion-bodied K4s survived. When I first saw one at Reading Station the pop-rivets put me off. How could my schoolboy judgment have been so flawed!
There should be Dennis delights at Alton Running Day, Hampshire, this July the 17th, and the big event is 100 years of Aldershot&District at Farnborough, Hants, Sunday May the 27th 2012.

Ian Thompson

———

28/06/11 – 06:24

Ian, I lived in Farnborough, Hants, for nine years from the mid sixties, by which time the Loline reigned supreme in the A&D double deck fleet, and I had a spell at Aldershot depot as a driver before returning to the admin side of the bus industry at Reigate. Although I have travelled as a passenger on the A&D K3 and K4 Lances, and my knowledge of Dennis buses goes right back to 1946 to 1949 when, as a child, I used to travel with my mother on the pre war O4 engined East Kent Lancet IIs between Faversham and Herne Bay, I have never driven a Lance or a Lancet. I have always had a strong regard for traditional Dennis machines, and Dennis were the only British manufacturer to put oil engines with four valves per cylinder into quantity production. Crossley made a wartime prototype "four valver" that performed well, but when Saurer asked for a royalty or licence fee for the use of its combustion chamber design, Crossley hastily redesigned the engine as a "two valver" with catastrophic consequences for reliability and performance. I am envious your driving sessions in these old Dennis buses, and it is wonderful to see them in preservation. My own short lived foray into the preservation scene was as part of a group that saved the Dennis Ace YD 9533. The costs of restoration became prohibitive, and we sold it on, and it is now thankfully a regular on the rally scene. The Ace was certainly an interesting machine to drive with its central accelerator pedal! I now live in East Anglia, but I will certainly bear in mind next year’s Aldershot and District centenary

Roger Cox

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28/06/11 – 11:38

Roger, I’m equally envious of your youthful rides on 04-engined Lancets. From what I’ve heard, they were livelier than one might expect from only 6.5 litres. I believe one is preserved and I very much hope one day to have a ride on it. I used to think the days of four-cylinder engines powering full-size buses were behind us, but the new Alexander-Dennis diesel-electrics in Reading, Oxford and Manchester seem to manage very nicely with their little fours.
When I worked at Smiths in Reading there were still 04 engine bits in the workshop, although the last 04s were probably off the road by 1960.
The only Ace I’ve ever ridden on in genuine service took me from Yarmouth to Freshwater, Isle of Wight, but the sound was all wrong as it had a Bedford OB engine and gearbox.
I can see why Crossley had for legal reasons to hurriedly redesign the Saurer combustion chamber, but I wonder why at the same time they abandoned the 4-valve head? That surely wouldn’t have infringed any patents.
The Reading downdraught-engined Crossley deckers were certainly slow, with their UW of 8.3.1, and they tended, oddly, to be used on the hillier routes, but they lasted for 18 years, so the workshop must have got a feel for keeping them happy.

Ian Thompson

———

29/06/11 – 06:52

Ian, your comments on Dennis and Crossley machines has prompted me to add a few more. My memories as a four to seven year old might now be optimistically tinged with nostalgia, but I do recall the curious muffled drumming sound of the Dennis O4 engines, very different from the local Maidstone and District Tigers (petrol and diesel), but the progress was very smooth and lively. I loved those old Dennis Lancets, and the high mounted radiator offset to the nearside denoted a truly independently minded manufacturer. The later Lancet III was surely one of the finest vehicles of its time.
I have some b/w pictures of three Smiths of Reading Lancets that brought a private party to Hampton Court in 1961. I will send them to the site in due course.
Still with Reading, I have a few pictures of that operator’s all Crossley DD42/8 machines which, as you say, were fitted with the downdraught engine that represented AEC’s attempt to mitigate the abysmal characteristics of the HOE7. I took the pictures in 1967 by which time the Dennis Loline reigned supreme in the double deck fleet. Having moved to the Gosport area when I was nine years old, I frequently saw the Portsmouth Crossleys in service, but I never travelled on a bus of this make until 1958, by which time I was living in the Croydon area. This was the year of the seven week London bus strike, and an outfit grandiosely calling itself "The People’s League for the Defence of Freedom" obtained permission to run some routes during the stoppage. One of these was route 2 between Croydon and New Addington, and two of the four buses allocated were ex Lancaster Corporation all Crossley SD42 (the others were an ex Crosville TD7 and an ex Lytham St Annes CWA6). Admittedly the Crossleys were 11 years old by then, and always well loaded, but I was amazed by the truly mediocre hill climbing performance of these machines. I have a picture of HTC 614 at New Addington taken with my trusty Brownie 127, and will send it in sometime.

Roger Cox

———

29/06/11 – 06:58

The strange thing about the Crossley HOE engine was that they never cured, or bothered to cure, the breathing problems that became apparent with the conversion to two-valves per cylinder. Yet, when AEC took them over, the problem was sorted out quite quickly!

Chris Hebbron

———

29/06/11 – 19:41

Chris, judging by the comprehensive "Crossley" book by Eyre, Heaps and Townsin, the Crossley Motors company did not take kindly to external criticism, and any that was forthcoming merely served to strengthen the firm’s intransigence, a very curious attitude to adopt in a fiercely commercial environment. Thus, not only did it take no meaningful action to solve the shortcomings of the HOE7, but it appeared to resent the AEC solution that appeared as the downdraught engine, even continuing to supply unmodified HOE7 engines in new buses. A similar cussedness was displayed in respect of the steering geometry on all Crossley buses. A simple readjustment in design would have cured the exceptionally heavy steering characteristics, that, in the case of the three axled "Dominion" trolleybuses, bordered on the impossible, but Crossley would not shift its position. No wonder AEC got fed up.

Roger Cox

———

30/06/11 – 05:33

What amazes me about Crossley is the difference in attitude between their chassis and body departments. Whereas the chassis people stuck stubbornly to their own ideas come what may, their first standard postwar body was designed not by Crossley but by Manchester Corporation. The special Manchester features – curves, waistrail steps and cantilever platform – quickly became optional, and even the first Liverpool bodies were actually the de-Manchestered Manc design reworked as a four-bay body with a flat front, as required by the Liverpool spec. I don’t think Crossley ever designed a double-deck body from scratch at all, although their postwar framing system was all their own.

Peter Williamson

———

01/07/11 – 05:27

Thank you Roger and Peter, for mentioning the diverse attitude of the two parts of Crossley, one self-serving and the other accommodating towards its customers. As we know, a chain is only as good as its weakest link!

Chris Hebbron

———

03/07/11 – 19:54

Talking about Track routes to this day the Arriva service 268 Dewsbury- Bradford service is still referred as the Track although in tramway days the service only went as far as Moorend as did service G in bus days.The service 281 Bradford to Thornhill is always referred as The Donkey for obvious reasons.

Philip Carlton

———

30/04/12 – 07:53

Roger, in his copy, records that these vehicles had five-speed gearboxes, but I seem to recall that they had four-speed boxes with overdrive. The driver would move the lever in a semi-circular way to gain overdrive. I only travelled on them from Woking to St. Peter’s Hospital, Ottershaw, a very flat route, so was never able to judge their hill-climbing capabilities. When living in Portsmouth, I did travel on the Petersfield – Guildford route as far as Milford on a couple of occasions, but that was on a Loline. I imagine that the Lances would also have been on that challenging route over the North Downs and I’d have loved to have ridden on them up there!
A childhood delight was going on holiday, around 1950, from Kingston – Southsea on a duplicate Southdown Leyland Cub coach. But I digress!

Chris Hebbron

———

30/04/12 – 09:12

Oh, there you go – as Chris Youhill has said elsewhere, that’s the fun of this site. Digress away. After the pathetic failure that was yesterday’s Cobham/Wisley event, we may only be left with our digressions!

David Oldfield

———

01/05/12 – 06:48

Well, the weather must have been appalling, if Gloucester was anything to go by, but were there other problems, too, David?

Chris Hebbron

———

01/05/12 – 06:50

Chris, the Dennis gearbox was an overdrive unit, giving five gears in all. Overdrive was a preselective gear designed using Maybach principles. To engage from fourth, the gear lever was moved at any time, as with a conventional preselector, to the left and forward, and actual engagement occurred when the accelerator was released to allow the revs to die. When the accelerator was pressed again, fifth gear was already engaged. To change down, the lever was moved back to the fourth position, and engagement occurred when the accelerator was released and then pressed again to raise the revs for the fourth ratio. Sadly, I have never driven a Dennis with such a gearbox, though I have travelled many miles as a passenger on Lances and Lancets so equipped. Ian T is the expert when it comes to practical experience.

Roger Cox

———

01/05/12 – 06:51

Is that Arthur and Olive from On the Buses just passing?

Philip Carlton

———

01/05/12 – 19:27

We were discussing this on Sunday, Chris, saying that the organisers might use the weather as an excuse. The weather was atrocious – but that wasn’t the problem. Most of the "runs" were a circuit of the airfield – not a decent run on proper roads. The 499 to/from Weybridge Station was supposed to be half modern low-floor vehicles – it was even worse. More of them, supplemented by re-engined RMs. I have friends "high" in the industry who said after Dunsfold, and then this, they will no longer be supporting it. Likewise people in the business who are enthusiasts who brought their own vehicles from wide and far. We were charged £10 to enter, get soaked and find nothing to entertain us – and a further £2 for the programme. Sorry you got me going Chris, but it wasn’t the weather and, despite living up the hill, it won’t be in my diary next year.
Rant over, now let’s get on with friendly sharing of expertise and experience.

David Oldfield


 

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Poole’s – Leyland Leopard L1 – 9513 RF – 9

Poole’s - Leyland Leopard L1 - 9513 RF - 9
Copyright Ian Wild

Poole’s of Alsagers Bank
1960
Leyland Leopard L1
Burlingham B43F

Pooles of Alsagers Bank (on the outskirts of the Potteries) ran a stage service from their home village to Newcastle under Lyme. One of their fleet was 9513 RF which is almost identical to the ex Sheffield Leopard shown on the site with Stevensons of Spath.
Pooles bought 9513 RF new and its Burlingham body (no7064) must have been built at the same time as the Sheffield batch (two of which had body numbers 7061 and 7062) – this information from ‘Bus Lists on the Web’.
The bus is wearing a Leyland Tiger Cub badge, although per ‘Bus Lists on the Web’ it is a Leopard L1, I am pretty sure at least the first two of Sheffield’s Leopards (1300/1) had Tiger Cub badges – maybe one of the Sheffield correspondents could confirm that. The bus looks to have high backed seats despite ‘Bus Lists on the Web’ quoting it as B43F. The photo was taken at Poole’s Depot in June 1971

Photograph and Copy contributed by Ian Wild

———

22/06/11 – 13:24

As per my post for Leopard fanfare 1002. The original batch were first intended as PSUC1 specials before being announced as L1 Leopards. I never saw them with Tiger Cub badges – but maybe these were removed and replaced after the official launch of the Leopard in November 1959.

B43F? The seats look like coach or DP seats to me.

David Oldfield

———

26/06/11 – 08:03

One other strange thing about this vehicle is that it was the only Poole’s service bus never to receive a fleet number. Those before it did, and so did those which came afterwards, right up to the family selling the business to the haulage contractor who drove it into the ground. Does anybody know why it didn’t merit a fleet number?

Neville Mercer

———

It is listed above with a fleet a number of 9 is this correct or is Neville on to another bus mystery

Peter

———

22/06/12 – 06:58

It is usual, if a vehicle is given a fleet number, for the number to be visible on the vehicle. As we see in the illustration, there does not appear to be one, however. Is it, perhaps, on the nearside or the back, or is it just for administrative purposes? Is Neville right to say it never received one? I’m supposing you mean not at all, not nohow even on paper, young sir! To my mind – or what’s left of it after a career in Local Government – the fact we don’t see one suggests very strongly that "not nohow" is correct.

Pete Davies

———

22/06/12 – 11:23

I walked around this vehicle on numerous occasions and also studied its interior, and I can confirm that it carried no fleet number, at least until mid 1972 when I last saw it. I think the mistake (in listing it as fleet number 9) may originate in PSV Circle publication 2PD7, covering Staffordshire independents, where it is so listed. The compilers seem not to have noticed that Pooles were operating a genuine fleet number 9, Tiger Cub/Seagull coach 938 CRE, from 1954 to 1968 which overlaps with the first eight years of 9513 RF’s stay in the fleet!
Having said that, it wouldn’t be unknown for an independent to operate two vehicles with the same fleet number at the same time, but in the absence of any photographic evidence I’m sticking by my original assertion.
I am forced to eat humble pie however, as I’ve just noticed in my own records that Poole’s Reliance/Park Royal bus 4399 E (delivered the year before 9513 RF) also failed to acquire a fleet number throughout its career with the operator. It seems that Pooles temporarily abandoned allocating fleet numbers in 1958-59 and then started again in 1960 without giving numbers to the two recently delivered service buses. Perhaps somebody else was in charge for those two years who considered fleet numbers to be a "big fleet" affectation!

Neville Mercer

———

23/06/12 – 06:01

Also meant to add that I agree it should be classified as a dual-purpose vehicle – the seats were of a higher standard than those on North Western’s contemporary "black top" saloons and comparable to those on North Western’s Reliance/Alexander Z types which NWRCC listed as coaches rather than "semi-coaches" on their internal fleet listings. In honesty it should be said that 2PD7 is not one of the PSV Circle’s most accurate publications, but in the absence of anything better was still used as a source for most of the enthusiast publications (Capital, AM Witton Fleetbooks etc) of the ’70s and ’80s. I’ve seen many of its known errors copied elsewhere over the years, so presumably Bus Lists took their data (ie B43F) from these sources.
As I’ve said before on this site, the PSV Circle do a marvellous job but any enthusiast who takes every word in their publications as "gospel" is slightly deluded. Everybody makes mistakes and they only get corrected if people point them out… and sometimes not even then!
Needless to say, if anyone spots any errors in my books, please feel free to air them on this site. I’d rather know than not know – it’s the only way we end up with better history.

Neville Mercer

———

23/06/12 – 14:24

Oh Dear!! I’ve just been looking through a copy of my own book "Independent Buses in Staffordshire" and I’ve noticed that the caption to a photograph of 9513 RF describes it as fleet number 9. Whoops. In my defence I didn’t write the caption (the original photographer presumably used 2PD7 as a reference), but on the other hand I should have picked it up when adding the details to the captions typescript or at the proof-reading stage. As I said above, "everybody makes mistakes", but I didn’t expect to be pointing out one of my own.

Neville Mercer

———

30/06/12 – 05:28

I would just like to add to the info on Pooles bus 9513 RF, I have been researching Pooles for a number of years and have now approx 300 Pooles bus and coach pics in my collection, and can confirm that 9513 RF DID carry a fleet number of 9 positioned each side of the front of the bus just below the sidelights, and I have a photo to show this, the other buses of Pooles to carry fleet number 9 were – 938 CRE, and XFA 967S, of which I also have pics to confirm, The buses purchased during 1958-59, and some later buses and coaches, did not seem to carry fleet numbers,. If I can be of any more assistance please get in touch, and any more info or pics to help me in my research would be most welcome, many thanks.

Dave G

———

30/06/12 – 11:23

Thanks for that info, Dave G, now I wonder if you can date the photograph which shows the fleet number? What I’m getting at is, did 9513 RF become number 9 after the disposal of the Seagull which carried that number in 1968? I’ve seen around a dozen decent quality shots of the vehicle over the years, none of them with it carrying fleet numbers in the position you describe, but it could be that all of these were taken prior to 1968. My personal visits to the operator (and to the N-u-L terminus) were concentrated in the years 1965-68 although I did see their vehicles in passing between 1968 and 1972 on sporadic visits to the area. By then however I had begun to devote more time to girls and less to buses!

Neville Mercer

———

The photos I have showing the fleet number I’m afraid have no dates on them, but seem to be early pics in black and white, I have other colour pics that do not show a fleet number. Pooles still owned this bus in March 1978. Two older Pooles buses also had fleet number 9, ORE 676, a Foden of 1947 vintage, and JVT 52, a 1945 Bedford. I am hoping to one day produce a book about Pooles when I have enough information. Also I have a collection of the old Duggins/Princess buses pics that shared the same routes as Pooles.

Dave G


 

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