Eastbourne Corporation – AEC Regal III – AHC 411 – 93

AHC 411

Eastbourne Corporation
AEC Regal III 6821A
East Lancs DP30R

Eastbourne Corporation purchased this single Regal III 6821A with East Lancs. DP30R body in 1950 and numbered it 11. Though they also owned a small number of other single deckers it is said that this one was intended to provide a better class of vehicle for private hire work, though it did perform its share of service work if the need arose. In the late 1960’s it was repainted from the much admired, traditional blue, yellow and white livery into the latest cream and blue version recently introduced on the Roadliners and Panthers and gradually being applied to some double deckers. Although to most this was a regrettable move, the new livery still looked very smart and their buses were always immaculately turned out.
It is seen here outside the original depot in Churchdale Road in July 1970, having just been renumbered 93. Sold to the London Bus Preservation Group in 1978, it was later repurchased by the Corporation, and has since been restored to full PSV status by them and into its original livery as no. 11 once more. It has attended many rallies, but is still also available for private hire work and even puts in the occasional appearance on service work.

Photograph and Copy contributed by John Stringer

16/12/13 – 07:39

AHC 411_2

Here is another shot of Eastbourne Regal 11 in the original blue primrose and white livery. This was taken in 2006 at the Worthing and Adur Rally

Roy Nicholson

23/12/13 – 06:59

Wonderful in either livery, but I do prefer the original one, as seen in the lower picture. Everything about this bus looks right: the glass louvers add style, the swoop doesn’t detract from the horizontal flow of the body, and the rear end has prewar dignity to it. Would that all coach bodies had this service-bus integrity of design.

Ian Thompson

23/12/13 – 11:22

Much as I usually prefer the original livery, Ian, in this case, I think the upper photo gives a much lighter look to the vehicle. Maybe the omission of the yellow swoop would help.

Chris Hebbron


Court Cars – Guy Vixen – KTT 689

Court Cars - Guy Vixen - KTT 689

Court Cars - Guy Vixen - KTT 689

Court Cars of Torquay
Guy Vixen
Wadhams C29F

KTT 689 is a 1948 Guy Vixen with petrol engine and C29F body supplied by Wadhams Bros. It is one of a pair supplied to Court Cars of Torquay. In later life it was preserved under cover at WETC for some 20 years before being bought by Ron Lucas. Upon his death it was acquired by the Black Country Living Museum where this picture was taken on 27/10/13. Repainted in 2012 it still has the original interior as supplied.

Photograph and Copy contributed by Ken Jones

12/12/13 – 07:16

Another beauty that’s found its way to these pages via Ken’s camera!
Thanks for posting.

Pete Davies

13/12/13 – 07:34

Yes indeed, a real treasure. I too saw it at the Black Country Museum in mid August on a day out with grandchildren. It was in service but unfortunately didn’t get a chance to ride on it. Although nowhere near as numerous as the Bedford OB / Duple Vista combination, there seemed to be quite a number of this body style around once upon a time, in the late 50’s / early 60’s. I remember one in Portsmouth that looked a bit sorry for itself c.1961/62, painted all over matt grey, registered FRV 629. It was based on a Morris Commercial chassis, and probably of similar dimensions to the Guy. It was owned by a local contractor, Privetts. This contractor was building an office block on the site of the disused part of the Cosham compound by the railway gates – the one time terminal for the trams and trolley buses, before the smaller one was built c.1948. The new office was just a simple building, not the high tower that is there now. FRV 629 just sat at the edge of the site for most of the time, so on reflection now, I presume it was being used as an office / store, rather than staff transport. There were at least two others of this combination, FBK 569 and FBK 639. Although all three were new to other local operators, they all ended up with White Heather of Southsea from 1953/54 until 1960. All three went to United Service Garages as a dealer, but only the one I’ve mentioned saw further use with Privetts. I read somewhere recently (this site?) that Wadham bodies were not renowned for their longevity, so their use from 1950 to 1960 as PSV’s is probably typical of their type. So we have a rare gem now preserved at Dudley, and well done for those who have restored it for service.

Michael Hampton

14/12/13 – 12:11

I was surprised to note that it has a full width bulkhead behind the cab, the driver shut off from the passengers in splendid isolation. It must have been a bit like driving a van.

John Stringer


PMT – Guy Arab IV – SVT 942 – H542

PMT - Guy Arab IV - SVT 942 - H942

Potteries Motor Traction
Guy Arab IV
Weymann H32/26R

These vehicles were ordered by Northern General and diverted to PMT. The destination blind boxes were quickly converted to PMT spec. A very poor bus in performance and ride quality having a Gardener 5cyl engine. Best part about them was light steering and in the summer you could drive with the cab door open. Although reliable they never strayed far from the depot. I managed to do 42 mph once in one.

Photograph and Copy contributed by Michael Crofts

09/12/13 – 09:26

These had all gone by the time I was at PMT. Being highbridge I would imagine they were allocated to Newcastle Depot. I well remember the poor performance of the 1956 Daimler CVG5s but those later fitted with a 6LW were a much better bus.

Ian Wild

09/12/13 – 14:40

I think the Orion looks better on a traditional-radiator Guy Arab IV than on any other chassis. Michael: when you spoke of poor ride quality, was that just the vibration from the 5LW, or did they give a choppy ride as well? I’m curious because Aldershot & District had Orion bodies on one batch of their Dennis K4s and found that the spring settings that suited the heavier East Lancs batch very well had to be modified for the Orions.
Good to know that you found the steering light. I’ve read elsewhere that some drivers found Arab IV steering heavy, which in view of the excellence of Guy design at that time surprised me. A maintenance issue? Or was the light steering of this Potteries batch attributable to the lightness of the 5LW+Orion combination?
42 mph sounds pretty spectacular, by the way. I wonder whether these machines had a high final-drive ratio, which would yield wonderful fuel consumption on long, flat runs, but would certainly contribute to the impression of sluggishness on start-stop work.

Ian Thompson

09/12/13 – 17:32

Ian, I’ve just seen the photo and your comment about how the Orion looks and couldn’t agree more. I remember seeing these in the Newcastle areas (both Tyneside and the Potteries) as a boy and they always looked impressive. Somehow the solid colour scheme helps.

Phil Blinkhorn

09/12/13 – 17:55

Just a thought: I have read elsewhere that differences in steering characteristics between buses of the same type with different operators were sometimes caused by the fitting of different tyres.

Peter Williamson

10/12/13 – 06:44

Peter, different tyres certainly would make some difference.

Phil Blinkhorn

10/12/13 – 06:44

At PMT a white steering wheel denoted a highbridge bus. Did the NGT buses of this type have normal black steering wheels?

Ian Wild

10/12/13 – 06:45

The harsh ride was down to the suspension. At the time I think we were running on Firestone tyres at Newcastle Depot.

Michael Crofts

10/12/13 – 15:18

Does anyone know the location in this picture? I think the destination blind reads Newcastle via Garner Street.

Chris Barker

10/12/13 – 15:21

The means of indicating height or width to drivers (and bus wash operators) is a subject in itself. Sheffield and Chesterfield buses carried a letter W on the dash to indicate 8 feet width, but for whose benefit? Preserved Chesterfield 225 has a yellow steering wheel, which I was told indicated highbridge. Some Southend vehicles carried a red one – was this to indicate height or width?
Bristol Tramways/Omnibus fitted white steering wheels to their 8-foot wide buses to warn drivers not to take one over a narrow bridge across the harbour. ECOC and several other Tilling Group companies did the same but it cannot have been general Group policy as Thames Valley KSWs had a black one.

Geoff Kerr

10/12/13 – 15:21

I disagree, Michael, in my opinion the harsh ride was due to the poor construction and extreme lightness of the early Orion bodies. The second batch we had a Percy Main, FT 9003/7 were an improvement on the first ones, FT 7893/6, however, the 1956 Park Royal bodied Arab IV was a superb vehicle in every sense bar one, NGT still specified the 5LW rather than opting for the 6LW. Having said that, they could scale the North face of the Eiger if asked to do so. As for speed, I think they must have had a high ratio diff, as they could get up to around the fifty mark. White steering wheels? The only ones I can remember at Percy Main were on the Daimler Fleetlines.

Ronnie Hoye

11/12/13 – 07:04

SVT 942_2

Here is a picture of the Guy H542 when brand new

SVT 942_3

and also a picture of same having had a bit of a hard life.
(I do not own either picture)

Michael Crofts

11/12/13 – 08:09

Michael’s second photo reminds me that PMT’s vehicles in the mid to late 1960s often had a care worn, shabby look.

Phil Blinkhorn

12/12/13 – 07:13

The red Steering Wheels at Southend was to warn that the bus was a highbridge and therefore banned from services 7/8 which had very low railway bridges.

Philip Carlton

09/12/15 – 06:04

Chris Barker asked about location. This image is Trinity St in Hanley, opposite the then Odean Cinema. I regularly travelled this route in late 50s/ early 60s. Little did I know that a decade later I’d be driving for PMT, though from Stoke Depot.

David Knight


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Old Bus Photos from Saturday 25th April 2009 to Sunday 28th May 2017