Old Bus Photos

London Transport – AEC Regent Bluebird ST – APC 168 – ST1037

APC 168

Photo: Copyright unknown

AEC Regent
LGOC H26/22R

The Bluebird six-wheel LT was an impressive and attractive variant of the LT class, but the Bluebird ST was rare. ST1037 was one of the first 8 of a total of just 23 Bluebird STs which London General built for their expanding green Country Services. Initially allocated to Windsor Garage by LGOC, under London Transport, it quickly moved to North London , serving at Tring until mid 1948, when it was transferred to Reigate for storage, then quickly re-allocated to Watford High Street Garage as a trainer.
Never having had an overhaul, looking very careworn, with deformed lower panels and body sag extending from bottom to the underside of upstairs windows, she is shown at Epsom Downs on route 406F on the shuttle service from Epsom Station to Epsom Downs during one of the Epsom Racecourse events, most likely around Derby Day, when any bus capable of moving was dragged out of dusty corners over to Morden and other places to operate shuttle services., Post-war, this attraction was often the death knell for some of these loyal, decrepit, worn-out servants, the stigma of imminent doom appearing as a crudely-chalked cross on the nearside wing! In December 1949, the axe fell and she was sold to Daniels of Rainham for scrapping and an undeserved end after over 17 neglected years of service. Not bad for a vehicle with a design life of about 10 years!

A couple of asides:
Note the Morris 8 maintenance van on the right 
Route 406F used the highest suffix letter ever by London Transport.
Some history of this vehicle taken from the excellent Ian’s Bus Stop website.

Photograph and Copy contributed by Chris Hebbron

18/04/20 – 05:48

Route 406F still operates on major race days, using the same route number and must be the last survivor of the Bassom route numbering scheme.

David Todd

19/04/20 – 06:05

Thx for that, David. Amazing the way some things survive in the most obscure and unique ways. It would not be surprising if the suffixes A to E disappeared years ago!

Chris Hebbron

20/01/21 – 06:53

Your text is slightly incorrect, Chris. These buses were delivered in the red livery of London General Country Services. Apparently the green country bus livery was first introduced in May 1933 prior to LT becoming operational. I presume the green livery as introduced in May 1933 was all over mid green with black relief and plain General fleetnames, that being the initial LT Country Bus livery. Apple green relief around windows was added later and in 1935 a new version with less black and possibly a different shade of the darker green along with London Transport fleetnames became standard. You can find pictures with LT fleetnames on the earlier green livery as well, the fleetname having been introduced in 1934.

PS: Surely the text should read "Never having had a post-War overhaul"?

Andrew Colebourne

31/05/21 – 05:02

Thx for posting the early history of these vehicles, Andrew.
As for overhauls, Ian’s Bus Stop makes no mention of pre-war overhauls, although there is mention of three of them having CHASSIS overhauls at Chiswick in 1948. It did nothing to prolong their lives, however, as all of the remaining ones went during 1949 anyway. It’s unlikely that they had postwar ones, for those LT and LTL’S which did have post-war body rebuilds, by outside contractors, lost their waistline cummerbunds, which this one still retains.

Chris Hebbron


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Hanson – AEC/Hanson Regent – TVH 497 – 361

Hanson - AEC/Hanson Regent - TVH 497 - 361                     Copyright Eric Bawden

AEC/Hanson Regent
Roe H37/28F

Here we have a picture I took at Sandtoft around 1972/3.
This bus started life in 1950 with Hanson of Huddersfield as an AEC Regal III 9621E with a Duple C33F body, registration EVH 805 fleet number 295. To ‘modernise it’ in 1954 Hanson had Plaxton remove the front bulkhead and build a Venturer style full front on it. It was then renumbered 326.

Hanson - AEC/Hanson Regent - TVH 497 - 361

In 1961 Hansons’ rebuilt the chassis and had a new Roe H37/28F body fitted, re-registered it as TVH 497 and gave it fleet number of 361. Numerically it was the seventh rebuild in the series, the fourth double decker and the first front entrance decker. It passed to Huddersfield Corporation with the stage carriage operations of Hansons’ on 1st October 1969.
Thornes of Bubwith acquired it in October 1970 as their no. 57. Although listed as being withdrawn and scrapped in Thornes own lists in May 1972, it was eventually acquired for preservation.
It is seen in the above colour shot in as acquired condition and what appears to be ex Aachen 22, a 1956 Henschell trolleybus with Ludewig body along side it. As this trolleybus is kept at the Sandtoft Transport Centre one must assume 361’s destination blind is telling the truth! I’m afraid I didn’t keep records of the pictures I took in those days so have to rely on detective work to place and date them.
Sadly 361’s career as a preserved bus didn’t last very long, I believe it suffered a catastrophic engine failure and was sold for scrap.

Photograph and Copy contributed by Eric Bawden

13/07/12 – 09:08

Thanks for posting. I have in my "bought" collection a view of VVH 348 which, by that time, had migrated to the Porthcawl Omnibus Company.

Pete Davies

13/07/12 – 17:12

Pete, That would be 368 when with Hanson, rebuilt in 1962 from 1949 Roe H31/25R bodied Regent III 285, ECX 414.

Eric Bawden

14/07/12 – 07:39

Unfortunately I don’t believe 361 suffered any catastrophic failure at all, but was just sold. It was kept here where I live in Greenfield, less than five minutes walk from where I now live, along with various other vehicles including my own. It just disappeared one day and I was annoyed about it at the time and even more so now, as it is a genuine Saddleworth bus which would have appeared frequently on the Oldham service which ran past Greenfield station.
The shame is that, had it survived at Thorne’s, even out of use, a bit longer it might have joined their fleet of splendidly-restored vehicles.

David Beilby

14/07/12 – 11:23

I was always under the impression that a conrod came through the engine block and that is why it was scrapped. It did get repainted in an approximation of Hanson livery but the shade of red was far too dark, almost maroon. There are some photos about of it in these colours. The correct shade was a Dulux colour called Wexham Red.
I did know the owner at one time but it is many, many years since I lost contact with him.

Eric Bawden

18/06/17 – 07:02

I bought 361 from Thornes and moved it initially to Sandtoft. It was then subsequently moved to Huddersfield goods yard where it was repainted into Wexham Red. The bus subsequently moved to a mill yard in Greenfield where it received the engine from Morecambe 57.
361 attended some rallies in the mid seventies and visited Shildon for the anniversary in 1975 (?).
The bus was sold in serviceable condition when I got married in 1976.

Bill Roberts


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Hanson – AEC/Hanson Regent – KVH 889 – 347

Hanson - AEC/Hanson Regent - KVH 889 - 347

AEC/Hanson Regent
Roe H37/28R

This bus was originally a 1938 AEC Regal coach registration ACX903 fleet number 113 and it had a Plaxton C32F body. It was then rebodied by Duple in 1949 to a front entrance bus with 35 seats and renumbered 284. In 1956 the Duple Body was transferred to an ex Bottomleys Motors 1946 Maudslay Marathon lll chassis and numbered 305 with Hanson, a photo of which is here. The chassis was then rebodied by C.H. Roe and numbered 347 with a registration of KVH 889 and classed as a AEC/Hanson Regent H37/28R. On every picture I have seen of this bus the engine side panel is not fitting correctly, I wonder if it ever did.
My thanks go to the Hanson section of the website belonging to Huddersfield Passenger Transport Group for all the information.


18/05/12 – 12:20

Maybe the ill-fitting bonnet cover was caused by chassis sag, especially as it was a double-deck AEC Regal!
The unrelieved red does the vehicle no favours.

Chris Hebbron


19/05/12 – 07:37

The chassis of 347 was actually built up from components of two pre-war Regal chassis, 113 as stated above and ex Chapman’s Regal Burlingham coach VH 9101 of 1936 which was withdrawn in 1954 after an accident.
It was the first of twenty two AEC’s to get rebuilt by Hanson’s over the next ten years and was the only one, apart from fire victim 1964 Reliance rebuild 384, not to pass to Huddersfield Corporation in 1969.
347 is far from being unique for pre war style AEC’s running with the bonnet side hanging off. For example, there are several photos around of Tom Burrows, Barnsley, very similar bodied Regents with the same problem. I’m sure I’ve seen a picture of one of Burrows Regents even running with an ex STL bonnet side in the same position.
Even though it is forty six years since 347 was scrapped, and it was well passed it’s sell by date by then, I have fond memories of riding on it and listening to that melodious prewar manual gearbox.

Eric Bawden


19/05/12 – 09:16

Extant pictures of SUT Regals approaching (or beyond) withdrawal also show the dropped panel effect. Why? That I can’t say.

David Oldfield


19/05/12 – 09:17

These complex rebuilds are indeed really fascinating. At Samuel Ledgard’s we had a magnificent (I loved it) AEC "Regal" coach with Burlingham body – I wonder how many of its merry passengers knew that it was a Birmingham Corporation 1930 Regent 1 double decker !! As Eric says about the Hanson vehicle, its powerful engine and wonderful gearbox, perfectly serviceable but delightfully worn to a lovely tune, were a joy. Incredibly, as it was definitely a "one off", it was the subject of a Corgi model – a good model if you can forgive the Duple body instead of Burlingham and the registration number incorrect – FWJ 938, should be FJW 938 – ah well, better than nothing I suppose.

Chris Youhill


19/05/12 – 15:21

While I can’t recall seeing any ill-fitting bonnet sides like that shown, I can recall lots of London Transport’s veterans buses, in my childhood, which had unsecured bonnet sides propped up only by the nearside mudguard! Maybe this was to keep worn-out engines from over-heating!

Chris Hebbron


20/05/12 – 07:59

I always thought CVD6’s were meant to look like that!



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