Old Bus Photos

Red & White – Albion Valkyrie CX13 – FWO 646 – S1447

Red & White - Albion CX13 - FWO 646 - S1447

Red & White Services 
1947
Albion Valkyrie CX13
Bristol (Brislington Body Works – BBW) B35R

Living in Clevedon, Red and White territory was very close and could be seen easily but was not accessible except by paddle steamer, the mildly frightening Aust car ferry or a drive through Gloucester! This photo was taken on 24/03/1963, probably in Chepstow, on an expedition across the muddy waters. The fleet was very varied and strange to me, brought up on Tilling regularity, although it was rapidly changing as Tilling Group standard vehicles arrived en masse. This vehicle suddenly caught my attention as it looked like an ECW body to excite me in the gloom. I see from Richard Smith’s website that this 1947 chassis had a Pickering body when new. It was replaced in 1953 by a Bristol (Brislington Body Works) body. The BBW single deck design was very similar to ECW with the main identifier being that the side windows had square corners to the top sliding vents, but in this latter-day product, even that distinction had gone.
I was always bemused by the company’s fleet numbering system. It took me a few visits before I managed to fathom out how it worked! I assumed that it was designed by the secretarial / finance department so it could see how the company’s assets were depreciating! I can’t think that it held any advantages for operating or maintenance staff to know that this was the 14th single decker delivered (or was it ordered?) in 1947 (despite having a 1953 body!)
When I was on the Tilling Group graduate training scheme at Bristol, I went for an interview for a technical assistant post at Chepstow. I learned something there that I never forgot:
Q (from Doug Flooks, Chief Engineer): What fall does a water drain pipe need to ensure water will flow along it?
A (which I didn’t know): 1 in 40. A fact that I have actually used from time to time in various situations but still cannot convince domestic rainwater gutter installers!

Photograph and Copy contributed by Geoff Pullin


30/08/20 – 08:26

Interesting view, and thanks for posting. When I was being retrained from Admin to technical I was told that (certainly for highway drainage purposes) a fall of 1 in 200 was adequate to move the water!

Pete Davies


31/08/20 – 06:29

Location appears to be Albion Square, Chepstow. There is a sign directing to the bus station on the wall, above the rear of the vehicle. The Chepstow-Coleford service operated via Tidenham – route number was 29, although not displayed on that vehicle.

Nigel Frampton


01/09/20 – 06:14

In January ’64 I saw several of these delightful Valkyries (not sure which batch) in Monmouth as I was hitch-hiking towards West Wales. I should have taken more notice of registrations and other details, but time was against me with the shortness of the days. Here my memory probably tricks me: I thought I saw at least one (engine side cover removed) with a Gardner 4LW engine, which I understand was an option for the Valkyrie CX9, but from what I’ve read in Richard Smith’s very informative R&W fleet history there would have been no 4LW Albions there at that time. Very grateful if someone can set me straight on this one!

Ian Thompson


01/09/20 – 10:45

I know this is straying from buses, but ref water flowing downhill.
The Gloucester and Sharpness Canal between Gloucester docks and the top lock at Sharpness is approx 25.25km and the surface elevation drops from 13m to 4m, a gradient of approx 1:2807.

John Lomas


03/09/20 – 06:25

Red & White had got rid of most of their Albions by 1960 and just a few hung on. By 1964 there were just a few surviving CX39 Valiant coaches (demoted to buses and all out of service in 1964) and fifteen of the BBW-rebodied Valkyries as seen above which lasted until 1965. All of these had Albion engines so it is most unlikely that Ian saw a 4LW-engined version. Such a small engine would not be any use to Red & White who had hilly operating terrain.
The 29 service to Coleford via Tidenham saw just four through journeys a day, with a fifth on Saturday evenings. The odd thing was that two of these departures were at the same time! They followed each other most of the way but had slightly different routes between St. Briavels and Coleford. There was another route, also the 29, that ran via Tintern. This was referred to in timetables in later years as the 29A but I’ve never seen a picture of a bus showing that route number. In any case it later fizzled down to one journey a day to and from Brockweir only.

David Beilby


04/09/20 – 06:44

A small book about the Ledgard fleet which I purchased many years ago comments about the five ex-Red & White Valkyries which were bought by Ledgards in 1959, registered FAX and EWO but otherwise broadly same as the one illustrated above.
The author writes: "Passengers were treated to a rattling good time, the sheer body noise emanating from these had to be heard to be believed! – At the same time, they were just about the fastest buses on the Bradford – Harrogate route, their hill climbing being nothing short of extraordinary when handled by a good driver".

Chris Barker


06/09/20 – 06:14

David Beilby and Chris Barker: thanks for your comments, which jointly prove that the 4LW engine I thought I saw in a Red & White Valkyrie was just my imagination. Being CX13s they will have had Gardner 6LW engines—especially if the five inherited by Ledgard crested the West Riding hills with such ease. The only apart from those I saw in the yard at Monmouth the only Valkyrie I ever remember seeing in service was one of King Alfred’s, just north of Winchester. It was only 5 years old at the time (1955) but I assumed it was much older.

Ian Thompson


 

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South Yorkshire – Albion Valkyrie – EWX 569 – 60

South Yorkshire - Albion Valkyrie - EWX 569 - 60
Photo taken by R. F. Mack

South Yorkshire Motors
1946
Albion Valkyrie CX13
Pickering B34F

No 60 one of three vehicles bodied by Pickering of Wishart, parked outside the South Yorkshire Garage in Cornmarket Pontefract.
These were used often as duplicates on the long Doncaster-Leeds service sometimes not all the way from Doncaster. If the normal double decker was getting full a phone call to the garage and a duplicate would be waiting at the Fox and Hounds Thorpe Audlin, in fact just opposite the garage from where South Yorkshire was founded by the Winder family in 1926. Also on the early morning ‘Paddy’s’ Colliery specials.
I remember No 60 well as it was my school bus in the 1950’s a short service from Thorpe Audlin to Whitwood Technical Collage at Whitwood. No matter what the weather it never failed to arrive more often than not staffed by two members of the garage team. Most of South Yorkshire mechanics were licensed drivers and conductors so they could be called on at short notice.
After withdrawn in 1957 it went like most withdrawn South Yorkshire’s to Double Two Shirt Company in Wakefield where it was used for several more years as staff transport.

Photograph and Copy contributed by Brian Lunn


15/12/17 – 07:29

The seating capacity of 24 seems low – did the vehicle have perimeter seating?

Roger Cox


15/12/17 – 11:01

Sorry Roger it should have read B34F. I was talking yesterday to one of the SYM drivers who used to drive this vehicle he is 96 years old and has just given up his Driving Licence.

Brian Lunn


16/12/17 – 09:18

Thanks for the clarification, Brian. Congratulations to your SYMT acquaintance. South Yorkshire bus driving seems to vie with orchestral conducting for longevity. May he prosper for many more years.

Roger Cox


29/12/17 – 07:42

Pickerings were at Wishaw near Motherwell.

Phil Drake


 

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South Yorkshire – Albion Valkyrie – GWT 630 – 61

South Yorkshire - Albion Valkyrie - GWT 630 - 61

South Yorkshire Motors
1947
Albion Valkyrie CX13
Burlingham C33F

GWT 630 is a former South Yorkshire Albion Valkyrie CX13 of 1947 vintage, though some sources say that it entered service in 1948. It is pictured on the HCVC Brighton Rally in 1971, but after a change of ownership, it subsequently underwent a complete restoration in 2009. The Burlingham coach body seats 33 passengers. This was the first post war coach bought by South Yorkshire (a devotee of the Albion marque), but it is thought that it covered a relatively low mileage in South Yorkshire service, the heavy sliding door being unpopular with lady conductors on stage carriage work. The 17ft 7ins wheelbase Valkyrie CX model was introduced by the manufacturer at the 1937 Commercial Motor Show, and was originally offered in three versions – CX 9 (6.1 litre 85 bhp 4 cylinder petrol), CX11 (Gardner 5LW) and CX13 (9.1 litre 120 bhp 6 cylinder petrol, or Gardner 6LW). Production stopped during the war but restarted in 1945 with the emphasis being on diesel power (Albion changed from indirect to direct injection in 1937), though the petrol options remained. The post war Valkyrie was offered as the CX9 with 6.6 litre four cylinder oil engine (Albion always eschewed the use of the word “diesel”), the CX13 now being fitted with the EN242, the oil version of the 9.1 litre six cylinder developing 105 bhp. A four speed constant mesh gearbox in unit with the engine was standard. The CX9 continued to be available until 1950, but the CX13 was replaced on the home market in 1948 by the fundamentally similar Valiant CX39 which had the more powerful 120 bhp EN243B 9.9 litre engine employed in the Venturer CX37 double decker. All Valkyrie and Valiant production ended in 1950, and Leyland took over the Scotstoun firm in the following year.

Photograph and Copy contributed by Roger Cox


22/11/17 – 07:41

Interesting photo and stuff, Roger, thx. Somehow, the whole look of the vehicle is somewhat spoilt by the rather small and therefore out of proportion radiator. Pre-war chassis were better in this respect and if there was a large sun across it as well, so much the better!

Chris Hebbron


 

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