Old Bus Photos

King Alfred – AEC Renown – 595 LCG & 596 LCG

King Alfred - AEC Renown - 595 LCG & 596 LCG

King Alfred - AEC Renown - 595 LCG & 596 LCG

King Alfred Motor Services
1964
AEC Renown 3B2RA
Park Royal H44/31F

595 and 596 LCG are AEC Renown 3B2RA vehicles with Park Royal H72F bodywork from the fleet of King Alfred Motor Services of Winchester, and date from 1964. They are both seen during one of the famous Running Days on 1 January 2009. Note the different applications of the livery.

Photograph and Copy contributed by Pete Davies


07/08/14 – 17:16

Are you sure it’s different livery and not different light? [The mirror is in a different position though.] They are a rather splendid pair. We await developments with a replacement for the New Year running days.

David Oldfield


08/08/14 – 06:02

According to the FoKAB website the event will be 3rd(eve)/4th May next year

Ian Comley


08/08/14 – 06:06

David, Thanks for your comment. Yes, it most certainly is a different green. The two photos were taken on the same day and in similar conditions. I compare it to the different applications of Aldershot & District or West Riding against Southdown.

Pete Davies


08/08/14 – 06:07

I do believe that 595 is lighter green.

Mike Morton


08/08/14 – 06:08

On my computer screen the greens look fairly similar or "why bother with two such similar colours" but on an ipad ("Retina" screen?) they look distinctly different.

Joe


08/08/14 – 06:09

Like David, I suspect that this is a trick of the light. I saw the King Alfred (R. Chisnell) fleet pretty frequently, and rode on it occasionally, when I lived in Hampshire from 1966 to 1975, and I recall only one shade of green being used. In fact, I did attend an interview in 1971 to see about a job in the Traffic Dept., but I was less than impressed with the outfit at that stage and didn’t pursue the matter. It was no surprise when it simply folded two years later.

Roger Cox


08/08/14 – 06:10

King Alfred did change their livery in the last years of operation. The upper picture of 595 LCG has the later (final) livery, all the same shade of green. The lower 596 LCG has the earlier livery with the darker shade of green at lower deck level. I think I have stated this correctly, unless the old grey cells are misfiring. (There was a coach livery too in the fifties and sixties, described as "eau-de-nil" – a sort of pale green, with a green stripe or flash related to bodywork embellishments).

Michael Hampton


13/08/14 – 07:05

According to "King Alfred Motor Services: the Story of a Winchester Family Business" (James Freeman & Robert Jowitt, Kingfisher, 1984), the later livery first appeared on the four Leyland Atlantean PDR1/2s (589-592) as a result of a mistake by the Roe paint-shop. Not only was the Brunswick green omitted from the lower panels, but the wheel centres were painted red – this was because these four vehicles followed on from a larger batch (101-125) of almost identical vehicles for West Riding, in whose livery they were mistakenly painted.
Apparently, the Chisnell family (the Directors of KAMS) were quite taken with the result, and decided to adopt the simplified livery (although, I think, without the red wheel centres) as the fleet standard.
This raises a number of questions! Firstly, how can a paint-shop get things so wrong? – even though the application of the KAMS livery was in the same proportions as WRAC’s surely the different destination apertures and application of KAMS fleet-names/legal lettering etc. might have suggested that the four Atlanteans concerned should have not received WRAC livery? . . . and what about final quality control? Secondly, the light green – was the KAMS light green exactly the same shade as WRAC green? – Freeman and Jowitts’ story suggests that the same light green was used on both the WRAC and KAMS buses.
So. Were KAMS offered a cheaper price by Roe if they took the four Atlanteans to more-or-less West Riding specification as a follow-on order? – the bodies are more-or-less identical except for destination aperture, an extra horizontal grab-rail behind the near-side windscreen on the West Riding bodies, and the Atlantean badge on the front of the KAMS buses. Were KAMS persuaded also to use West Riding green as being very close to their own light green? . . . and was that mis-interpreted in the Roe paint-shop as an instruction to use WRAC livery, full-stop?

Philip Rushworth


 

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North Western – AEC Renown – AJA 127B – 127

North Western - AEC Renown - AJA 127B - 127
Copyright Ian Wild

North Western Road Car
1964
AEC Renown 3B3RA
Park Royal H42/30F

This former North Western bus still in its original livery but with SELNEC (Cheshire) fleetnames is at the Norfolk Arms terminus in Glossop in May 1972 not long after North Western was split between SELNEC, Trent and Crosville. This was one of the second batch of these buses bought by North Western in this case with forced ventilation evidenced by the lack of opening windows. I wonder how effective this was in dispersing the cigarette smog more or less standard on the upper decks of buses in those days. I pass this location from time to time and wonder at how there could have been a busy bus terminus at such a busy location.

Photograph and Copy contributed by Ian Wild

A full list of Renown codes can be seen here.

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28/08/12 – 15:17

The Norfolk Arms was busy and similar to the LPTB Hounslow trolleys, the traffic signals were controlled by the driver when ready to depart. I think it was mounted on the pole just by the driver’s cab in the picture. This turned the High St W and E, Victoria St and Norfolk St lights to red and then the bus would sweep out. I have it on good authority this led to at least one conductor being left behind. The old North Westerns from Glossop had a few characters.

Mike Franks

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28/08/12 – 18:03

I felt bereft, as a student in Manchester, missing my AECs from STD, SUT and the local coach operators. Luckily North Western plied down the Wilmslow and Palatine Roads in student land. It might have been a Fleetline or a Loline but my day was always made when one of these Renowns turned up to take me home.
These PRV bodies have, unfairly in my opinion, been called ugly. Compared with Bridgemasters – especially the forward entrance version – these were positively beautiful, and in their own right were better looking than many contemporaries.

David Oldfield

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28/08/12 – 18:04

When NBC was set up many fleets were shuffled around like decks of cards, and Northern General was no exception. At Percy Main ‘Tynemouth and Wakefields’ we had a number of Daimler Fleetlines sent off to different areas and got all sorts in return, among the number were six Renown’s that came from East Yorkshire’s fleet. I was in the minority but I quite liked them, especially if you got one on the likes of the 306 or 308 where you had some long gaps between stops, but they could be hard work on some of the town service routes that stopped at every other lamp post.

Ronnie Hoye

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29/08/12 – 07:59

I have to agree with David that this version of the Park Royal body, combined with North Western’s style of applying the livery, is FAR better than the version on the Bridgemaster or on Southampton’s Regents and PD2As. Those things were little better than shoe boxes with windows. It’s not far off the style Oxford had on their …CWL Regents, and it really was quite good!

Pete Davies

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29/08/12 – 08:00

I agree with David that the Park Royal Renowns were a big improvement on the Bridgemaster but I wouldn’t go as far as to say they were beautiful. The only Renowns that can justify that accolade in my opinion were the East Lancs bodied versions operated by Leigh Corporation. There were both rear and forward entrance versions in a wonderful blue and cream livery. Fortunately one of the forward entrance vehicles is still with us at Boyle Street museum in Manchester.

Philip Halstead

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29/08/12 – 08:02

Wearing my driver’s hat, I can imagine a Fleetlines’s attraction for stop start over a manual AEC – much as I personally prefer the latter. Significantly, the North Western Renowns had been "downgraded" from long trunk routes, only to be reinstated by Crosville when they had taken over the Cheshire operations. They claimed they were better out on the open road and could maintain "a head of steam"!

David Oldfield

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29/08/12 – 10:17

Philip. I did say compared with the Bridgemaster. I would definitely agree with you about the Leigh buses. I used them on the Warrington service when I was doing my post-graduate teacher training at Padgate in the mid ’70s. One or two were still in blue and cream but orange and white was the order of the day. [For new vehicles, I think SELNEC/GMT orange and white was actually quite good even though it did spoil older vehicles in "better" municipal colours.]

David Oldfield

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29/08/12 – 12:24

As I’ve already said I quite liked the Renown’s, but by the time they came to us most of the routes for which they would have been ideally suited had either gone over to, or were in the process of being changed to OPO, as for them having "a head of steam" they could clip on a bit, and unlike the PD3’s, where after a prolonged spell of stop start braking where the brakes become a tad warm and tend to fade, you could guarantee the Renown’s would stop when asked to.

Ronnie Hoye

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29/08/12 – 12:24

East Lancs also bodied Renowns for Leicester in both front and rear entrance versions on of the front entrance ones regularly appeared on the rally circuit 190 DBC 190C. My own favourite Renowns were the ones owned by East Yorks in their traditional livery complete with modified upper deck window pillars to negotiate Beverly Bar.

Chris Hough

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29/08/12 – 12:26

Regarding the beautiful East Lancs-bodied Leigh Renowns, Philip Halstead mentions there is a forward entrance example preserved at the Manchester Museum.
Their rear entrance Renowns were always great favourites of mine ever since I saw the front and rear view photographs of one of them in Buses Illustrated when new. In 1976 I bought 28 (1975 TJ) for preservation from GMPTE, but in the 1980’s sold it and it then passed through several subsequent owners – maintaining a very low profile in the process. Only last week I learned that it been acquired by Tony Blackman for continued preservation, and who knows…..maybe operation in his Yorkshire Heritage Buses wedding hire fleet, though I do hope that it doesn’t turn black and white in the process. The beautiful azure blue and cream Leigh livery would be very much in demand by would-be happy couples I would imagine – it would match the bridesmaids’ dresses and floral arrangements !

John Stringer

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30/08/12 – 06:49

1975 TJ_lr

Leigh 28 at Luddenden Foot, it has been working hard this summer for Yorkshire Heritage Buses. This shot was on her first day in service and as can be seen it is in black & white John.

Geoff S

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30/08/12 – 07:09

AJA 129B_lr

Here is a picture of fellow Renown AJA 129B in Manchester, en route to Alderley in true North Western days. I have to admit that personally I much preferred the North Western Loline IIIs to the Renowns in both appearance and performance, but it would be nice to be able to detect something of the variety and individuality of the psv designs of those times in the present day crop of tediously indistinguishable bus types.

Roger Cox

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31/08/12 – 07:33

Thanks Geoff S. for sending the photo. I hadn’t realised its restoration had advanced so far, I may well then have seen it at a distance and mistaken it for the ex-Southampton Regent V. As for the livery……….I’ll say no more.

John Stringer

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31/08/12 – 09:35

Black marks for the new livery, then, John?

David Oldfield

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31/08/12 – 09:45

Is black a good colour for a wedding or do they do funerals as well.

Spencer

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So where have you been for the past year and a bit? Have you forgot how to send emails?

Peter

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31/08/12 – 12:28

It’s a dual-purpose vehicle, Spencer; white for weddings; black for funerals!

Chris Hebbron

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31/08/12 – 12:29

Tony Blackman’s "new" livery is in fact that of Lockey of West Auckland, and presumably was prompted by his acquisition of a full-fronted Regent V/Park Royal which (although new to East Kent) had been operated by that famous County Durham independent. That particular vehicle also carries Lockeys titles while the rest of the heritage fleet don’t. We all have a lot to thank Tony for – in my personal case for an unforgettable ride through the Mersey Tunnel on his ex-Halifax Regent III. What a pity that his revived Halifax JOC no longer operates stage services in the original glorious livery!

Neville Mercer

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31/08/12 – 12:30

I suppose so David, but the thought of how it could have looked in its proper livery leaves me feeling blue.

John Stringer

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31/08/12 – 12:32

The black and cream livery used by Yorkshire heritage buses is derived from the colours on a former East Kent AEC Regent V which is in the livery of its last owner Lockey of St Helens Auckland I saw the ex Darlington Guy saloon in the livery recently and it looked very good indeed. Better in a livery than a scrap yard!

Chris Hough

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02/09/12 – 07:10

The trouble with Bridgemasters and lowheight Renowns was that there was no inward tapering at the front, creating a profile that was squat and square. That’s why the Beverley Bar treatment is such an improvement – it adds a much-needed bit of shape. Don’t forget Northern Counties www.flickr.com/

Peter Williamson

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03/10/12 – 06:07

I used to drive these Renowns, 127b, & 129b, in the 60s at the North Western Altrincham Depot , a nice drive but a bit on the ‘Bouncy’ side!!

Roger Williams

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AJA 127B_lr Vehicle reminder shot for this posting

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13/11/12 – 08:44

I was a summer guard with NWRCC at Glossop Garage between 1960 and 1962. It was the guard that operated the lights at the Norfolk Arms terminus and you had to be mighty quick to get back to the platform, clutching Setright and money bag to grasp the platform pole before the driver moved off. Bristol K5G’s were OK but a PD2 was fast off the mark and you held on like grim death for the swing round. Those were the days – swinging loads on the old 125 to Manchester and overloads on the 85 to Buxton on summer days. It was a great company with great mates at Glossop depot. Public service at its best!

Roger Chadwick

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13/11/12 – 12:57

Roger, be thankful it was a PD2 and not a trolleybus or you’d have been left standing.

Ronnie Hoye

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23/11/12 – 10:03

Roger, Myself and two colleagues have been researching the North Western driver and conductor duties. Would you have kept any information when you worked at Glossop in the 60’s

Keith Hampton

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22/01/13 – 06:33

Roger, Being one of the Two colleagues that Keith refers to can you supply any names of staff at all.
All part of an on going, and growing, North Western project of ours.

John Dixon


 

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East Yorkshire – AEC Renown – GAT 815D – 815

East Yorkshire - AEC Renown - GAT 815D - 815
Copyright Ian Wild

East Yorkshire Motor Services
1966
AEC Renown 3B3R
Park Royal H38/30F

This was taken at Flamborough on 12 June 1968 in glorious sunshine and about to head off on a Bridlington cross town service. The top deck has the characteristic East Yorkshire inward taper to allow safe passage through the North Bar at Beverley and what an elegant and distinctive livery!! This must have been the last batch of front engined buses for East Yorkshire.

A full list of Renown codes can be seen here.

Photograph and Copy contributed by Ian Wild

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I know that the AV590/AH590 engines were a little suspect and that the Regent III/RT was better regarded but I still don’t think you can do much better than the Regent V. [Sheffield’s certainly acquitted themselves well in the mountains close to – and in – the Peak District.]
After the commercially unsuccessful Bridgemaster came the low floor Regent V – otherwise known as the Renown. I was particularly fond of the North Western beasts which batted down the A34 during my time as a student in Manchester. How true, though, about the elegant livery of EYMS.
The Bridgemaster was ungainly and almost ugly. The similar body on the Renown was just different enough that I think it avoided the vices of its big brother. It was the right bus at the wrong time, though. Time and the Atlantean overhauled it – and then came the Fleetline as well.

David Oldfield

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Some of the 1966 East Yorkshire Renowns were swapped for some older Fleetlines with the Northern General Group in the early days of the NBC. Many of these ended up in NBC yellow as they ran in the Tyne and Wear PTE area. The sharp eyed may spot one in the film version of the Likely Lads

Chris Hough

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Quite prescient, that. Many big fleets dual sourced and many, like Sheffield, went over to Daimler Fleetlines from AEC Regent Vs and Renowns. Although AEC deckers lasted to the end (1968/9), like most other half-cabs, they were a spent force by 1966 – very few being delivered in the last few years. [Regrettably, much the same thing happened with the Reliance about ten years later. Killed off for an inferior life-form. Tragic!]

David Oldfield

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I always thought the Renowns bodied by builders outside the AEC/PRV group were very handsome buses. The East Lancs examples of Leigh Leicester and West Bridgford spring to mind The later NCME examples used by City of Oxford were also a smart vehicle.

Chris Hough

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I remember reading, when AEC’s intention to build the Renown was first announced, that it was to replace the Regent V as well as the Bridgemaster. At a time of dwindling sales for front-engined buses, rationalisation did make a sort of sense. I imagine that the reason it didn’t come to pass was because, once built, the Renown was probably too pricey for operators who didn’t really need the low floor, and would have driven traditional Regent V customers to Leyland.

Peter Williamson

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Chris. I couldn’t agree with you more about Leigh and W Bridgford’s East Lancs Renowns. very handsome.
Peter. You’re probably right about the expense. Bristol had a guaranteed customer base and so achieved it with the Lodekka.
Strange that Bristol managed two world beaters (Lodekka and RE) in particular market segments where the two giants (AEC and Leyland) could hack it.

David Oldfield

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04/10/11 – 21:06

I was at Northern’s Percy Main depot at the time the Renown’s arrived. By that time most of our half cabs had gone, but we still had a few PD2’s & 3’s. They all had sliding cab doors on the inside that opened towards the front, however, the cab door on a Renown is on the outside and opens back over, a few drivers found to their cost that when going through the wash the cab door had to be held firmly shut or the brushes could quite easily open it and leave the driver a bit on the damp side.

Ronnie Hoye


 

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