Old Bus Photos

Brutonian – Bristol RE – STC 928G – 28

Brutonian - Bristol RE - STC 928G - 28

Brutonian Bus Company
Bristol RESL6G
East Lancs B47F

Bruton is a settlement on the River Brue. It is in Somerset, between Frome and Yeovil. STC 928G is a Bristol RESL6G, new to Accrington Corporation Transport in 1969. It has East Lancs B47F body and passed to Brutonian in 1982. The fleet number and Accrington livery were so near Brutonian’s requirements that neither was changed. The operator became part of the Cawlett Group and is now part of First. We see the bus parked in New Canal, Salisbury, on 17 April 1984, having come in on a market service.

Photograph and Copy contributed by Pete Davies

19/02/17 – 16:22

STC 928G

4 vehicles were acquired by Brutonian in 1982 from Hyndburn as successor to Accrington CTD. The vehicles were reliable and popular and the livery was retained and looked attractive as can be seen from Pete’s photo in Salisbury. None were ever repainted and by 1987 the livery had deteriorated as can be seen from the attached taken in Dorchester.

Keith Newton

19/02/17 – 16:23

It wasn’t in such good condition three years later see link www.sct61.org.uk/ac28a

Keith Clark

20/02/17 – 07:09

Keith and Keith, Your photos suggest that this vehicle was on its way to a breaker, rather than in service. Given what became of Brutonian, one might wonder if it’s a ‘practice’ for the Barbie livery!

Pete Davies

20/02/17 – 13:26

Perhaps we should have a section for the worst presented buses- "battered buses"? Even on the original photo, you can see the untreated deterioration around the "peak" and front wheel arch. The grille was starting to go on the first pic, and then… Brutal!


21/02/17 – 07:06

How could a vehicle so neglected be allowed to operate? What about the vehicle examiners and the traffic commissioners? I don’t think I have ever seen a bus operating in such a sad state, and the final shot was hopefully before scrapping – it would have been a mercy killing.
Brutonian, with the emphasis on the ‘brute’.
Thank goodness for operators like Safeguard at Guildford.

David Wragg

21/02/17 – 16:15

David, I agree with what you say about the appearance, but the condition of the paintwork is not a criteria for a vehicle test. However, the body is, so presumably it must have been up to standard or it would not have been granted a C.O.F. There is of course the reverse of the coin that a coat of paint hides a multitude of sins

Ronnie Hoye

21/02/17 – 16:16

To be fair – maybe – things were different then in particular the powers that be were more concerned with de-regulation and local authorities had to ensure non-commercial services would continue. The owner of Brutonian had agreed to sell to a local businessman whose interests included a travel agency and the transfer was delayed until de-reg ie end of October 1986. As well as existing routes and new commercial ones , the new company had gained additional tenders – not least the trunk route 6 between Sherborne and Dorchester. Despite the poor external appearances , the REs were apparently mechanically sound and reliable and the additional work probably extended their lives. Unfortunately the 6 passed County Hall and comments were apparently made therein !! No 28 was withdrawn soon after the photo was taken and continued concern saw the tender itself subsequently transferred the following year to another local operator.

STC 928G _2

Attached is another photo taken in May 1985 in Castle Cary on the Saturday evening Bingo service and is probably how these fine vehicles should be remembered.
A new book on Brutonian concentrating on the routes and operations is to be published soon through the Omnibus Society.

Keith Newton

22/02/17 – 07:11

I think ‘the ugly face of de-regulation’ is a term that sums up this situation. A similar thing happened in the North West where the once proud Yelloway having been asset stripped by new owners secured a tendered service into Manchester formerly run by the PTE. They used very unsavoury looking cast-off Bristol VRT/ECW vehicles in worn out ex NBC liveries with no fleetnames and paper stickers in the windscreens as a destination display. It was a disgrace. Fortunately the powers that be stepped in fairly quickly and terminated the arrangement with the service being re-tendered. Not the British bus industry’s finest hour.

Philip Halstead

22/02/17 – 07:12

I have read that Brutonian only repainted vehicles when they were in for other maintenance, resulting in the most unreliable ones being repainted first and vice versa. So looking at the state of this one, Keith’s comment about its mechanical soundness rings true!

Peter Williamson

27/02/17 – 07:49

Chris Knubley the owner of Brutonian never really had much money. There was an injection of money into the business in 79 when he bought his first RE (GAX 5C – a great bus!) and CYA 181J (survices) along with WYD 928H from H&C, the latter was never painted. Generally the most reliable buses were painted 217 UYC and 497 ALH for example, while others ran in a range of former operators colours 8087 TE and TET 166, for example. Not creating consistency was something he had done from 1972! There was clearly something wrong with the last paint job done by Hyndburn on MTJ 926/927G and STC 928/928G. Alternatively the guy who replaced me washing them down from Sep 82 was using the pressure washer incorrectly, or it had been inadvertently fitted with the sandblasting nozzle! 27 became the donor to the others although lasted until a few years ago along with 26 and 29 in Shobdon before final scrapping. 28, in the picture, I understand was in fact the most reliable and went onto be repainted and see further service with Metrowest (the only one of the four). It was indeed different times…I now own the only bus to carry the Brutonian colours which is OVL494, an identical bus to Brutonian’s OVL 495, which was scrapped after an attempt to convert it to a half cab. All other survivors are in original operator colours or in CYA 181J’s case, awaiting restoration.

Paul Welling


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Rossendale Transport – Leyland Titan – XTF 98D – 45

Rossendale Transport - Leyland Titan - XTF 98D - 45

Rossendale Transport
Leyland Titan PD3/4
East Lancs H41/32F

XTF 98D is a Leyland Titan PD3/4 with East Lancs H73F body, new to Haslingden Corporation in September 1966. Two years later, Haslingden and Rawtenstall combined their fleets to form Rossendale Transport, in which guise we see it here. It is taking part in the King Alfred running day in Winchester on 1 January 2006. It is behind the Bus Station.

XTF 98D_2

Here is a closer shot of the fleetname.

Photograph and Copy contributed by Pete Davies

12/02/17 – 09:11

Think the vehicle is now in Oxford area working for an operator.

Roger Burdett

13/02/17 – 07:05

Thanks, Roger. I think that, when I took the photos, she was with Quantock.

Pete Davies

13/02/17 – 15:07

XTF 98D was last known with The School Bus Company (Oxford) Ltd of Kingston Bagpuize.

John Wakefield

16/02/17 – 16:01

Kingston Bagpuize … now how is THAT pronounced? The "Kingston Bag-" part is (I hope!) straightforward, but after that? When I first saw it (on a map or a road sign), I had an attack of franglais and rhymed it with squeeze, but I think I’ve heard it rhymed with views.
It would, of course, be delightful if the word is actually pronounced like … a certain saggy old cloth cat?

Graham Woods

17/02/17 – 06:23

Graham, according to Wikipedia (not always reliable) the pronunciation of (Kingston) Bagpuize is "bag-pews" – but I didn’t know either until your question prompted me to look it up just now!

Stephen Ford

17/02/17 – 06:26

Graham: I live only 5 miles from Kingston Bagpuize, and although jokey versions such as "bagpipes" are sometimes heard, the current pronunciation is as you’ve heard it—to rhyme with "views".
It seems that Ralph de Bachepuze came over from Bacquepuis (pronounced roughly "back-pwee") in Normandy to settle in north Berkshire, so your attack of franglais was quite in order.
Southmoor, adjoining Kingston, is fortunate enough to have the half-hourly 66 Swindon-to-Oxford service, but other nearby villages—Appleton, Fifield, Hinton Waldrist, Longworth and so on—have recently lost their bus service altogether and are therefore playing their patriotic part (at least according to George Osborne’s strange logic) in reducing the "drain" on public finances which decent public transport is said to represent.

Ian Thompson

17/02/17 – 06:27

Bagpuss, I believe.

Chris Hebbron

18/02/17 – 06:53

Thanks, Stephen and Ian, and yes, Chris, that is the cat that I had in mind.

Graham Woods


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Darwen Corporation – Crossley Regent V – 434 BTE – 17

434 BTE

Darwen Corporation
Crossley Regent V D3RV
East Lancs H31/28R

Darwen Corporation was well-known for buying buses which weren’t quite what they seemed, and 434 BTE is typical. "Ah! AEC Regent V with East Lancs body!" I hear. Sorry, folks. 434 BTE is in fact badged as a Crossley.

434 BTE_2

This was something associated with the allocation of spaces at the Commercial Motor Shows. It is of the Regent V D3RV variety and the East Lancs body is of the H59RD layout. It is seen on Southampton’s Itchen Bridge in the first view, on 6 May 1979, while the close view of the radiator grille was taken in the museum at St Helens on 15 July 2012.

Photograph and Copy contributed by Pete Davies

16/12/16 – 06:26

A true classic municipal bus of the era. Everything just sits together so well. The shapely East Lancs bodywork matches the AEC design tin front so well and it is all topped off with a dignified livery. Darwen also had three Reliances which were similarly badged as Crossleys and also with East Lancs bodies.

Philip Halstead

17/12/16 – 06:31

It looks rather narrow, was this bus 7ft.6ins wide?

Chris Barker

19/12/16 – 09:27

Yes Chris this bus is 7ft 6in wide. Darwen also had some similarly bodied Leyland PD2/31’s which were also 7ft 6in wide. The Regent V and PD2’s had an unusual sliding platform door to the rear platform which was an arrangement used also by Southdown. There was a hinged lower section which turned in to avoid the rear wheel as the door slid forward to open.

Philip Halstead

01/05/17 – 07:09

If you wanted a "genuine" Crossley Regent V then Liverpool Corporations A101-167 (SKB 101-167) of 1955 fitted the bill, as these had Crossley bodies. All went for scrap sadly.
It was a bit odd for Crossley to show off this vehicle when they closed down a year after this bus was built.

Paul Mason


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Old Bus Photos from Saturday 25th April 2009 to Monday 24th July 2017