Old Bus Photos

West Bromwich – Leyland Tiger Cub – UEA 213 – 213

West Bromwich - Leyland Tiger Cub - UEA 213 - 213

West Bromwich (County Borough of) Transport Department
1958
Leyland Tiger Cub PSUC1/4
Mulliner B39R

This was one of three buses purchased by West Bromwich in 1958, which were unusual for two reasons. Firstly they represent a rare foray by Mulliner into the full size bus market; they were known for their bodies on smaller Bedfords, with substantial numbers delivered to the armed forces. Secondly, the provision of a rear entrance on a single deck vehicle was completely out of fashion by this stage, and I am unaware of any other examples on underfloor chassis types. One wonders what the reasoning behind this was, as well as the choice of Mulliner for the bodywork. I can only hazard a guess that none of the major bodybuilders were prepared to do so as they had by this stage all settled on a standard forward entrance design, whereas Mulliner were prepared to build to a bespoke design. Subsequent single deck purchases like 250 to its left were conventional; by this time Mulliner had ceased coachbuilding.

Photograph and Copy contributed by Alan Murray-Rust


15/02/21 – 06:07

Although not common rear entrances on underfloor engined single deckers did exist elsewhere. Accrington had them on East Lancs bodied Guy Arab LUF’s and Manchester on Leyland Royal Tigers bodied by Northern Counties. North Western had some Weymann bodied Atkinsons also. I think Southdown and Aldershot & District also had some but I would bow to our southern experts on that.

Philip Halstead


15/02/21 – 06:08

There were other examples of underfloor single deck service buses without front entrances.
Sheffield had a couple of Royal Tigers with open platform rear entrances and Doncaster (Regal IV) and SHMD (Atkinson) had centre door configurations.
I believe there were similar examples in Scotland which I am sure other contributors will be able to list.

Andrew Charles


15/02/21 – 06:09

FDB 512

North Western Road Car Company had rear entrance single deckers. Here is a picture of Atkinson Alpha, fleet number 512, (FDB 512) with a B44R Willowbrook body.

Stephen Howarth


15/02/21 – 15:19

What an unusual vehicle! Not just the body builder and entrance layout but the chassis as well. PSUC1/4 refers to a 7’6” wide pneumocyclic gearbox version. I would think that is a pretty rare beast.

Ian Wild


15/02/21 – 15:20

East Yorkshire stuck with rear entrances into the underfloor-engined era, having Royal Tigers with Windover Kingsway coach bodies and Brush and Weymann bus bodies (the Weymann ones being later rebuilt as front entrance by Roe). Both East Yorkshire and Yorkshire Traction had Tiger Cubs with Willowbrook DP rear entrance bodies. Pontypridd UDC had some Arab LUFs with Roe bodies, and Edinburgh had one Leyland/MCW Olympic.

John Stringer


16/02/21 – 05:46

Here’s a photo of one of the Pontypridd Guy LUF/Roe vehicles. https://davidbeilby.zenfolio.com/

Chris Hebbron


16/02/21 – 05:48

Southdown did indeed have a batch of 10 Royal Tigers No’s 1500-1509 with East Lancs B40R bodies delivered in 1952. In 1953 these were followed by a further batch of 30 similar but centre entrance bodies again by East Lancs all of which were converted to front entrance for one man operation in the early sixties and very comfortable buses they were too.

David Lennard


16/02/21 – 05:49

Another unusual, even unique, feature of these Mulliner Tiger Cubs was that they had full bulkheads, confining the driver to his own full width cab. It can be made out in this photo – https://flic.kr/p/wXJyEo
Another website explains that rear entrances were specified because the spacing of town centre bus stops was based on rear entrance buses and it was felt that front entrance buses would lead to bus stop congestion. This view no longer prevailed when the next single deckers were acquired.

David Williamson


16/02/21 – 05:50

Thanks to all for the pointers to other rear entrance/underfloor vehicles. I suspect that it was a result of my not really becoming interested in buses until the mid 1960s that I was unaware that there were in fact quite so many, as I suspect that the majority had relatively short lives due to being unsuitable for OPO. Trawling BLOTW shows that the bulk of them date from between 1951 and 1954. The stand-out ones are Accrington (1956) and Pontypridd (1957), but as far as I can see, the West Brom ones were the last of the breed. It was the late date of construction for the layout that surprised me. Of particular interest are the two Royal Tigers for Sheffield, which are shown as B31R, which the discussion here http://www.sct61.org.uk/sh222a shows is the result of the buses being designed for a significant number (26 to 31 depending on the source!). That page also drew my attention to another real oddity – the set of 8 Dennis lancet UF2 with unusual Davies bodies that Newport purchased in 1956/7. I should have remembered as I do have a picture of one of them!

Alan Murray-Rust


18/02/21 – 07:18

Referring back to the original post which suggests that this bus was a rare foray by Mulliner into the full size bus market.
In the same year as the three West Bromwich examples were produced Mulliner also built a pair of bodies on AEC Reliance chassis for Douglas Corporation, these followed on from five normal control Guys delivered the previous year.

Andrew Charles


18/02/21 – 07:18

An illustrated short history of Mulliners may be found on the Local Transport History Library site. Select General History, and on that Coach Builders page click on PDF-129-1. Mulliners is near the bottom.

Roger Cox


20/02/21 – 07:17

Municipal ordering begins with an invitation to tender. It’s doubtful if Mulliners would normally have responded to these. However, if Bedford chassis lists are anything to go by, it seems that their military work dried up in mid-1957, hence perhaps the turn towards mainstream PSV work illustrated by their bizarre full-size coach for the 1958 Commercial Motor Show. Even if their tender for this small batch of very non-standard Tiger Cubs (7’6" wide as well as rear-entrance) was not the only one received, it could well have been the lowest. It seems that they gave up and sold out shortly after.

Peter Williamson


 

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E J Deeble, Liskeard – Leyland Tiger Cub – MMR 553 – 4

MWR 553

E J Deeble Liskeard
1955
Leyland PSUC1/2
Harrington C41C

E J Deeble operated some local services in the Liskeard area of Cornwall. In June 1978 this coach originally owned by Silver Star, Porton Down who sold out to Wilts and Dorset in the 1960s was operating a service outside Liskeard Railway Station – a commendable bus/rail link. Note the raised front headboard above the destination boxes where the Silver Star motif was originally fitted. This bus can’t have been ideal for local service work because of its centre entrance.

Photograph and Copy contributed by Ian Wild


04/05/20 – 05:52

This coach and its Silver Star fellow appears elsewhere on OBP: www.old-bus-photos.co.uk/

Roger Cox


05/05/20 – 05:54

I have been interested this operator since I first saw a picture of 2 of their Leylands, a Cub and Comet in the book ‘Buses in Camera South West’ by Norman Aish, published in 1977. About 25 odd years ago returning from Cornwall to the Midlands I decided to take detour to Upton Cross, there I found in a Portacabin office a Mr Deeble who explained to me he was the son of the founder. He went on to chat about the company saying where ever possible they bought Leylands . He also related the story of a new Comet chassis that was shipped to a local bodybuilder (non PSV, I can’t remember the name). When the vehicle was complete it was found to be too tall to exit the building. The answer was to remove the wheels and drag the vehicle out on its hubs! (I have no idea if this is true but it is what I was told). Mr Deeble also said that the single vehicle garage next door, was not only built by his father, but he made the bricks as well! I could have chatted for ages but as my wife was waiting patiently in the car I decided it best to resume my journey to the Midlands. So a random detour proved very successful on that occasion.

John Rentell


06/05/20 – 07:21

Further to my post above concerning the Deeble Leyland Comet with a locally built body I have come across the following details in a list kindly supplied by Roger Grimley some years ago.MRL 910, Leyland Comet with a 33 seat Mashford body new on 5/50 and withdrawn on 5/71 after accident damage. As I have not heard of Mashford previously I am wondering if this is the vehicle Mr Deeble was referring to as a local body builder. If anyone has a picture I’d love to see it.

John Rentell


06/05/20 – 07:23

On the hubs? That’s nothing: http://archive.commercialmotor.com

Martin Ingle


07/05/20 – 06:42

John R, no picture, I’m afraid, but apparently Mashford Brothers were boat builders who had a go at building coaches for a while. They were/are based in Cremyll, Cornwall and it seems they are still in business today as boat repairers.

Chris Barker


08/05/20 – 06:19

John, there’s a photo of MRL 910 (when past its best) on flickr – https://flic.kr/p/RMTprx  – new to Deeble 5/50. According to James Taylor in his book A-Z of British Bus Bodies, Mashford built six bodies at their boatyard at Cremyll, two in 1948, two in 1949 and two in 1955. The first two were Bedford OB, ECO 746 and ECO 997 for Millbrook Steamboat and Trading Company. The remaining four are captured by photographs on flickr. MRL 764, Austin for Hawkey, Wadebridge – https://flic.kr/p/xXkkAf  MRL 910 as above and URL 838/9 for Willis, Bodmin – https://flic.kr/p/xYtRjG 

David Williamson


10/05/20 – 06:52

David, thank you for sending these links. When the first Mashford body appeared on my screen I was not sure what to expect, however I think they look pretty good, identifiable by there own style side flashes. The Deeble Comet looks to have suffered serious damage to the off-side front, so understandably it was withdrawn, but apart from that it looks OK for a 20+ year old motor. If I can just master printing from FLICKR I can add these shots to my lists of these operators.

John Rentell


 

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Yorkshire Traction – Leyland Tiger Cub – SHE 167 – 1179

SHE 167

Yorkshire Traction Company Ltd
1960
Leyland Tiger Cub PSUC1/1
Metro-Cammell B45F

This Yorkshire Traction Tiger Cub, 1179 (SHE 167) is seen in All Saints’ Square, Rotherham at the loading barrier for service 27 to Barnsley via Hoyland, joint with Rotherham Corporation, in July 1962.  The bus is in ‘Tracky’s’ reversed livery of predominantly cream with red trim, reserved for coaches and service buses that could also serve as duplicates on summer outings to the seaside.  Having said that, Rotherham was just about as far away from the seaside as you could possibly get, certainly by Yorkshire Traction!
In the background is the impressive building housing Arthur Davy’s shop and café; a table next to a second floor window in this establishment was the perfect place from which to watch the steady comings and goings of the buses and trolleybuses in the Square below.
The other four buses, parts of which are captured in the view, are all Rotherham Corporation Bristol Ks, on various town journeys. Note the ‘Power’ petrol/diesel sticker in the rear window of 178 (EET 578), which was obviously the fuel used by the local corporation; Doncaster’s buses were often seen to carry these as well.

Photograph and Copy contributed by Dave Careless


23/09/19 – 07:13

Rotherham Corporation, just another municipal undertaking which isn’t mentioned much nowadays but it had a fascinating fleet and it covered a wide area. It’s buses could be seen in Barnsley, Doncaster, Chesterfield and Sheffield. It probably suffered from being overshadowed by some of it’s near neighbours!

Chris Barker


24/09/19 – 04:19

Fascinating is an understatement. Mid entrance single deck trolleybuses – many later given new double-deck bodies. A passion for Bristols – maintained until the early ’50s, after the BTC embargo on sales outside the nationalised sector. Modern Bristol Ls sent back to East Lancs (and associated companies) to have double-deck bodies fitted – effectively making them Ks. When that source dried up, Rotherham actively chose to by Crossleys (up to about ’52/’53?) – only for that supply to dry up. Then a stable run of Daimler CVG6s leavened with AEC Bridgemasters and Renowns for low height requirements and finally, before the Fleetline took over, three AEC Regent V 3D2RA – very rare beasts with the 11.3 litre engine. A fascinating fleet indeed.

David Oldfield


25/09/19 – 05:45

Now you’ve whetted my appetite for more Rotherham photos, David!

Chris Hebbron


25/09/19 – 05:46

Some time ago I sent this photograph to a friend Laurie Johnson of Blackpool, who was working as a Rotherham Corporation trolleybus driver when this photo was taken. All these years later, he was still able to identify three of the RCT personnel; the driver with his back to the Tiger Cub was Alf Beeley, and the two inspectors (with hats) were Arthur Heald (left) and Jack Cox (right). Interesting to think that in today’s world, the group of them would probably either be texting or scrolling on I-phones instead of talking to each other , or else drinking coffee from throw-away cups!!

Dave Careless


25/09/19 – 06:59

The 27 was the only route into Barnsley run by a corporation undertaking. Sheffield was the JOC, not the corporation. Some of Rotherham’s East Lancs bodies were by Yorkshire Equipment – who built yachts and school desks! They were renamed East Lancs (Bridlington),

David Oldfield


27/09/19 – 06:21

Effingham Street 27_09

David mentioned how Rotherham Corporation had worked their way through deliveries of Bristols, Crossleys and Daimlers in the late 40s/50s and into the 60s. This picture rather encapsulates that, with Crossley 185 (EET 885) of the first batch of twelve, with both a Bristol K and a Daimler CVG6 at other stands further down the street. And gliding past, 38 (FET 340), originally number 80, one of the twenty rebodied Daimler trolleys that had shed its original 38-seat single deck East Lancs body for a 70-seat Roe structure in 1956.

Dave Careless


28/09/19 – 05:59

Well done for your photo which does indeed encapsulate my comments. I hail from the leafy southwest of Sheffield but hold Rotherham in great affection. Not only have I relatives in Rotherham but I was, for a short time, organist at All Saints’ (which gives its name to the Square) and, until it closed in July, gave regular recitals at Talbot Lane Methodist Church – just up the hill, opposite the Town Hall.

David Oldfield


28/09/19 – 06:00

Why did Rotherham convert all/some of its single-deck trolleybuses to double-deckers, Dave, an unusual thing to do, let alone single-deck trolleys being rare in themselves?

Chris Hebbron


29/09/19 – 07:01

Chris, by the mid-fifties the small capacity single-deckers were uneconomical to operate and the trolleybus side of things was losing money. With no reserve fund available for wholesale conversion to buses, the new manager, I.O. Fisher, persuaded the Transport Committee in 1955 that double-deck operation would right the ship, which it did. Trolleybuses ran in Rotherham for another ten years before finally being abandoned.
For the record, seventeen of the remaining twenty-four single-deckers eventually made their way to Spain, where they operated successfully for several years. One apparently still survives, preserved in a semi-restored state.

Dave Careless


06/10/19 – 08:04

Not only did Rotherham operate an eclectic fleet of trolley and motor buses the also operated some unique single ended trams on the service to Templeborough on the Sheffield Rotherham boundary the also in pre war years ran through to Sheffield.

Chris Hough


06/10/19 – 08:04

One noticeable aspect in these two pictures taken the same day in 1962 in Rotherham town centre is that the Bristol buses seen in the photograph of the "Tracky" Tiger Cub in All Saints’ Square have the cream paint extended down to below the line of the bottom of the windows on both decks, whereas the Crossley, and the Bristol/East Lancs bus behind it in the view in Effingham Street have been repainted, and the cream paint no longer extends down past the beading below the windows. In the original scheme, a thin black line was added between the blue and the cream, a nice touch, but in the later variation, the lining out was eliminated and the livery was simplified. Cutting costs was the order of the day, and the era of spray painting had begun!

Dave Careless


 

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Old Bus Photos from Saturday 25th April 2009 to Monday 8th March 2021