Old Bus Photos

Ideal Service – Leyland Tiger – DJ 6058

Ideal Service - Leyland Tiger -_DJ 6058
Picture R F Mack

Ideal Service (R Taylor & Sons)
Leyland Tiger TS6C
Roe B36R (1949)

Parked in Beastfair Pontefract awaiting for the return journey to Barnsley is DJ 6058 which was a Leyland TS6C new to St Helens corporation in 1934 with an English Electric B32F body. Acquired by R. Taylor and Son Cudworth who ran the Ideal Service with H. Wray of Hoyle Mill Barnsley. Re-bodied in 1949 with a Roe body, the entrance was changed to the rear and four extra seat were added making it a B36R.
When Taylors sold out to Yorkshire Traction, Wray’s continued to run the service until they too sold to Yorkshire Traction. Stagecoach ran the service Barnsley to Pontefract via Upton until the 29th January 2017 and they have terminated the service at Brierley. The service from Hemsworth to Pontefract via Upton in now run by M Travel with a vastly reduced service.

Photograph and Copy contributed by Brian Lunn

17/02/17 – 06:48

To see what it looked like originally, there’s an official picture of a sister vehicle when new at: http://davidbeilby.zenfolio.com/

David Beilby

17/02/17 – 08:54

Thanks for the picture David, it is interesting to see the difference. I don’t remember it any different to the Roe body, so it may have been re-bodied soon after Taylor’s bought it.

Brian Lunn

17/02/17 – 08:55

David – thanks for the link to the official photo of the St Helens version of this TS6c. However, what amazes me is the sign in the back window stating "Dick Kerr Coachwork". I realise they had an historic link with English Electric but I don’t think I’ve ever known of, or seen, reference to a Dick Kerr bus body before.

Paul Haywood

17/02/17 – 14:40

Yes, Paul, an interesting observation. I knew of the ‘Dick Kerr’ connection to trams, and the English Electric connection to both buses and trams, but it appears (if we believe Wikipedia) that the DK operation was a member of the EE group, and that the name is not a variation of Richard Kerr, but a combination of Mr Dick and Mr Kerr, so "Dick, Kerr".

Pete Davies

17/02/17 – 14:41

By the time of this picture DJ 6058 seems to have lost its torque converter, as there is no long tank visible on the front bulkhead. I guess the conversion to normal gearbox would have been made at the same time as the rebodying.

Ian Thompson

17/02/17 – 14:42

According to the Peter Gould fleet list, this vehicle (and one other of its type) were rebodied while with St Helens, and lasted until 1954 with that fleet.

David Call


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Hunter’s – Leyland Tiger TS7 – JR 6600 – 21

Hunter’s - Leyland Tiger TS7 - JR 6600
Photograph by ‘unknown’ if you took this photo please go to the copyright page.

H W Hunter and Sons
Leyland Tiger TS7
Burlingham B35F

Another from H W Hunter and Sons. New to them in 1937, JR 6600 was a B35F Burlingham bodied Leyland TS7.

Hunter’s - Leyland Tiger TS7 - JR 6600
Photograph by ‘unknown’ if you took this photo please go to the copyright page.

In 1954 it was rebodied by Roe as a B39C, so it was around at the same time that they had the two Titans previously featured on this site. I’m 90 per cent sure they had another Leyland single decker but I’ve been unable to trace it. They had a well deserved reputation that you could virtually set your watch by Hunter’s bus and in addition to the service vehicles they had several coaches, all either AEC or Leylands, although they later switched to Volvo’s. They escaped becoming part of NBC and the formation Tyne and Wear PTE didn’t seem to affect them much because their depot and most of their single route were outside the area controlled by the PTE, so they were more or less allowed to continue much as before. However, I think the PTE may have had some influence over the decision to extended the route from North Shields beyond Seaton Delaval to Cramlington. The huge operational area covered by the pre NBC United Automobile Services empire was split up into bite size pieces prior to deregulation, and the area between the Tyne and the Scottish border was taken by the newly formed Northumbria Motor Services, which was in effect a management buyout. I don’t know the circumstances and I wouldn’t want to speculate, but Hunter’s became part of the Group. I think the name lived on for a while, but Northumbria Motor Services were swallowed up by Arriva, and like many other independents the name of W H Hunter is now, just a memory.

Photograph and Copy contributed by Ronnie Hoye

02/01/13 – 07:50

That is a huge seating capacity for a pre-war halfcab chassis. Was it extended when it was rebodied?

Eric Bawden

02/01/13 – 09:06

I wondered the same thing, Eric, and whether it was a road-based prototype for the "economy class" of airline seating!

Pete Davies

02/01/13 – 16:53

A most interesting question and 39 does seem a lot of seats in a vehicle of , presumably, 27’6" length. One would also have thought that a centre doorway, as opposed to the previous front door, might well reduce the available seat space. However, as the two pictures are taken from roughly very nearly the same perspective the vehicle appears to be the same length in both. It was unusual, but not unknown, for normal length prewar buses to have more seats than ideal space wise, but even the lightweight Lions and Cheetahs taken over by Samuel Ledgard in 1943 from the widow of G.F.Tate of Leeds originally seated 39 in their delightfully "old fashioned" Barnaby bodies.

Chris Youhill

02/01/13 – 17:35JR 6600_cu

I’ve given all the information I could dig up and I don’t know if the chassis was extended, but two things look a bit odd to me. On the Burlingham body, if you look at the seat above the letter ‘H’ it gives the impression that the seats over the rear axle appear to be facing each other, also the wheels are fairly flush to the side of the vehicle, whereas on the Roe they look to be slightly inboard, as if the vehicle has been widened but the axle length is still the same, or is it me?

Ronnie Hoye

03/01/13 – 06:42

7ft 6in chassis and original body, but 8ft new body, perhaps? If so, this wouldn’t be the only one, and they do look a bit strange!

Pete Davies

03/01/13 – 06:43

Ronnie, I would agree with you that the Roe body looks to be 8ft on a 7ft 6in chassis. The Roe body also has an extra window bay to the Burlingham.
It may be purely body style but the body overhang behind the rear axle looks to be longer on the Roe than the Burlingham, certainly, there are almost two full window bays behind the wheelarch on the Roe as against one and a half on the Burlingham. Also if you look at the exhaust tailpipe it appears to be in the same position in relation to the back axle in both photos yet the Roe overhang, again seems to be longer.
Don’t know if it has anything to do with this discussion but the front wheels, despite the absence of nutguard rings on the Roe are different to those fitted in the Burlingham picture.
As this body looks to be almost identical to the centre entrance Guys placed in service with Darlington in 1952/3 I wonder if Hunter’s body was tagged on to the end of the Darlington order, a not uncommon occurrence at Crossgates Works, even into the ’70s. I believe Darlington’s Guys were B41C.
Has anyone a nearside view of this bus with its Roe Body?

Eric Bawden

03/01/13 – 06:44

My word Ronnie, I think you’ve hit on two very pertinent features there for sure. As regards the "inset" appearance of the wheels on the newer Roe body I would say that the replacement coachwork is eight feet wide on the unaltered 7’6" TS7 chassis – a practice not unknown in the 1950s especially on single deckers. Your enlargement of the area above the "H" of Hunters reveals an interesting feature. The "A" shaped seat back appears to be a joint support for two seats, one on the left facing backwards and sharing the floor space with a forward facing seat to its rear, and one forward facing one on the right. The four passengers (plus four on the nearside) in the facing seats no doubt had to put their feet on the slightly intruding wheel arches. What a wonderful vehicle in both its forms !!

Chris Youhill

03/01/13 – 06:44

To my eye the newer body looks longer, though not much – the typical Roe high domed roof tends to mask this. 39 seats would mean 10 rows on the offside, 9 on the nearside (both including the rear 5-some). That sounds awfully tight in a length of 27’6" – minus the length of the cab and thickness of the front bulkhead.

Stephen Ford

04/01/13 – 06:45

Eric, I typed JR 6600 into my search engine, and up came the Park Royal vehicles site with what I take to be a pre delivery photo taken outside the Roe works. It differs slightly from the Darlington Guy’s, as when the doors are closed they form part of the side of the bus, whereas the platform steps are exposed on the Darlington vehicles.

Ronnie Hoye

04/01/13 – 17:43

Thanks Ronnie. After initial difficulty I eventually found the photo on the PRV site.

Eric Bawden

08/01/13 – 07:43

Noting some of the concerns about fitting 39 seats into a body on a 27’6" chassis so earlier today I took a tape measure to a 1952 Roe body with 39 seats although in an overall 30′ chassis and with a front entrance.
Putting 5 seats across the rear leaves a further 34 seats to be fitted by means of 9 sets of double seats on the offside and a further 8 sets with a door on the nearside. The length of the 30 footer from the bulkhead to the rear of the final pair of seats at the back was 22’2" with a gap of 29.5/30" between the same points on adjoining seats.
Turning to the shorter 27’6" bus under review and allowing the same distance from the front of the bus to the front bulkhead and similar requirements for the rear seats leaves circa 19’6" for the 9 sets of seats on the offside and would allow a gap of just 25" between the same point each set of adjoining seats. To me that looked a rather tight fit so I measured the seat gaps on some others from that era and all of them were in the range of 28-30"
To reduce the gap between seats by 5" in the 1950’s would, in my opinion, require smaller seat bases or otherwise it would be impossible to fit your legs in.

Andrew Beever

08/01/13 – 10:42

Andrew: Although I agree that the extra seats would be tight, your maths isn’t quite right. With a 39 seater there are 10 rows of seats on the offside, including the back bench seat. On the basis of your 29.5" pitch, the overall length of the 10 rows is 295". Reduce this by 30" and the ten seats now have to fit 265", so the pitch is 26.5". You lose 3" per seat, rather than your 5". I am over 6 ft, with long legs, and can just make a 27" pitch with a thin seat back with my legs straight, so the average person just about fits OK. Birkenhead used to cram 66 seats onto a PD2 without a 3 seater at the back or a television seat. Those seats were definitely tight for me, and probably similar in pitch to 39 on a 27ft 6in half-cab.

Alan Murray-Rust

08/01/13 – 13:43

Alan, I had specifically excluded the rear seat in my calculations since this seat is effectively fitted into the rounded rear corners with very limited foot room under it.

Andrew Beever

15/01/13 – 16:38

Hunter 21 (JR 6600) had Roe body GO3827 when rebodied 3/54.
Hunter 20 (JR 4901) was the other Leyland TS7 10076 rebodied by Roe in 4/53 (GO3680) also squeezing in 39 seats in its centre entrance body.
Hunter did, of course, have another new Roe body. Fleet number 30 was WTY 843J, a Leyland PDR1A/1R, with H43/29D bodywork


16/01/13 – 10:48

Thanks for that, Mike, I’ve been racking my brains, or rather what little is left of them. I knew they had a second Tiger but I’ve been unable to find any records of it, did that also start life with a Burlingham body?

Ronnie Hoye

27/01/13 – 10:30

I’m sure the two single deckers were VTY 360. & TJR 573 this I have to say is from memory many years ago.

Bob Mandale

28/01/13 – 08:40

Bob, MikeB came up with the answer I was looking for. The two single deck buses you refer to were the replacements for JR 4901 and 6600. They were AEC 2MU3RV’s with Plaxton Highwayman B45F bodies. TJR 573 was delivered in 1961 followed by VTY 360 in 1962 (VTY 360 is coming as a separate posting soon). By that time the chassis on 6600 was nigh on 25 years old and from the registration I would estimate 4901 to be a couple of years older. Apart from WTY 843J mentioned by MikeB, I believe the two AEC’s were the last new service buses bought by Hunter’s as all subsequent vehicles were either coaches or D/P’s

Ronnie Hoye

03/04/15 – 05:31

Further to the discussion on the length of JR4901 and JR6600, can I mention that these two vehicles had a rear-facing seat for five across the front bulkhead, and an inward facing single seat on the nearside just ahead of the centre entrance. I also think that the entrance may have been slightly wider than usual for a single decker of that era. I don’t recall the seat spacing as being especially tight, so I would think that the bodies must have been slightly longer than the original ones. Incidentally, the original body above is described as B34F, but it looks to me to be a coach body.

John Gibson

01/06/15 – 07:20

There was a heck of a lot of rebodying of half cab single deckers from 1950 as 38 or 39 seaters once the 27′ 6" maximum length had been increased to 30 feet.
However, all is not what it seems. Buses for Trent, North Western and Potteries and the Hunter’s Tiger were lengthened without any alteration to the wheelbase of 17′ 6" because the C&U Regs until 1961 allowed the rear overhang to be up to 50% of the wheelbase. With a front overhang of about 2′ 3" on, say, Gardner 5LW or AEC 7.7 engined chassis – and a rear overhang of 8′ 9" it was legal from 1950 to go to a maximum length of 28′ 6" without altering the wheelbase. This was sufficient for another row of seats to be fitted without any alteration of the chassis.
Indeed, I think it was only Yorkshire Woollen District which actually lengthened the wheelbase of its Willowbrook bodied PS2s to 18′ 9" when they lengthened them to 30 feet.
Many of the Leyland PS’s taken over by Potteries in the early fifties were already 28′ 6" long and may have inspired PMT to rebuild its Weymann single deck 17′ 6" wheelbase OPD2s by substituting a 2′ 7" long bay for a possible rear door with a 3′ 7" long standard window bay, increasing the seating capacity in the process.

Alan Johnson


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East Yorkshire – Leyland Tiger – RH 206 – 158

RH 206_lr
Copyright Bob Gell

East Yorkshire Motor Services
Leyland Tiger TS2/6
Ransomes C26R

I received these shots the other day from Bob Gell with the following comment

“I visited the Coach and Bus Show at the NEC, Birmingham on Wednesday, and found this amongst the new vehicles.
It has been restored by Bluebird Vehicles, based in Scarborough, and is absolutely immaculate.”

Bob also sent a shot of the interior and the Leyland Motors Ltd manufactories plate that is mounted on the bulkhead they are below. Fortunately under the Fleet Lists section of the site there is Keith Eastons very detailed East Yorkshire Motor Services 1926/1941 fleet list which is where I got the information from.
Keith also states that East Yorkshire disposed of 158 in January 1946 to Adamson Bros in Hull it would be interesting to know its history from then.

Photographs and Part Copy contributed by Bob Gell

09/10/11 – 11:10

RH 206_int_lr

Interior shot

RH 206_bulk_lr

Manufactories Plate

09/10/11 – 08:11

What a stunning vehicle.

David Oldfield

09/10/11 – 09:38

As David rightly says, stunning indeed – perhaps someone could arrange a visit for a certain leading manufacturer in Northern Ireland to show them what a relaxing and dignified interior looks like eh ??

Chris Youhill

I can only echo Chris and David’s comments. I sometimes wonder what the essential design elements are about half cab single decker buses and coaches that in almost every case produce such elegant vehicles. The basic layout is fairly much identical yet the details are fascinating and how much more interesting they look than today’s standardised vehicles.
It would be interesting to see what a modern designer would do to create a 2012 "half cab"..I know it would never pass current operating regulations but it could bring up some forgotten details that might guide the current box designers toward making better looking vehicles. Also, as Chris says, that Ransomes interior is both practical, peaceful and stylish with Art Deco themes..a vast improvement on the multicolour gaudy finishes now offered.
Well done to the people who restored this bus and hopefully it will be out on the Rally scene next year!

Richard Leaman

09/10/11 – 16:52

Richard, a modern designer would come up with a sub standard half cab.
There are several examples of modern vehicles in the coaching side of the industry which are really reincarnations of an earlier era: Mercedes Vario – Bedford OB Mercedes Atego – Bedford SB Toyota Coaster – Bedford VAS
but they are (very) pale imitations of their classic forebears.

David Oldfield

09/10/11 – 16:54

Follow the restoration story here at this link

John Darwent

10/10/11 – 06:36

Thank you John for that link. I’m sure I can speak for many when I say that this superb restoration leaves us aghast with admiration for such thorough and painstaking work, and for the incredible finished product.

Chris Youhill

10/10/11 – 06:37

It’s always wonderful to see a lovingly restored vehicle and this is of the highest order. And nice to see a Ransomes’ body, too, for they retired from bus/coach body building not too long after this example. Their efforts always seemed to be of a good quality.
I’ve no idea when Clayton Dewandre heaters came upon the scene, but this would appear to be an early fitment, I’d hazard.

Chris Hebbron

10/10/11 – 06:38

What a beautiful bus. All credit to the restorers. Looking forwards to seeing it on the rally scene.

Philip Carlton

12/10/11 – 06:15

According to PSVC Fleet History PB17, the Tiger was next recorded as a caravan at Wilfholme Landing, (situated on the River Hull, between Beverley & Driffield) by 1953, and still there by 1980. It was purchased by Carl Ireland (I believe) at an unknown date and he did £15,000 worth of restoration, and then resold it to Bluebird. Bluebird’s website shows it as a bungalow, and on the low-loader in the state which it was purchased from Carl Ireland by Bluebird. Congratulations all round, I think. One small grouse though, I do wish it had carried East Yorkshire instead of Yorkshire Tiger!

Keith Easton

12/10/11 – 06:16

There were two of the three Ransomes bodied coaches in use as caravan homes on Mr R Harrison’s farm down Wilfholme Lane not far from Aike, (yak-a-baca-arram – in east yorks speak) 1st turn after Watton.
There is a confluence of river and drain at the site it was very damp the day I went Feb 1983. so its just as well the bodies were covered in to some extent. My note that day says EY 156/158. I think Mr Harrison said they went there from EYMS via a dealer.

Ian Gibbs

25/08/14 – 07:31

Does anyone know the present whereabouts or status of this vehicle, please?

Keith Easton

27/08/14 – 17:32

Bluebird Vehicles has ceased to trade. http://www.route-one.net/industry/finance/scarboroughs-bluebird-vehicles-administration/

Stephen Howarth

29/08/14 – 06:25

According to Bus & Coach Preservation magazine
"The assets of Bluebird Vehicles have been bought by Manchester based Woodall Nicholson".
Now if I remember correctly in my days there they were a Halifax company that built hearses, John Stringer is the man who will correct me if I am wrong.


29/08/14 – 16:38

Quite correct Peter.
William Nicholson (born 1822) was a Master Coachbuilder based in Scarborough during the 19th Century. He retired during the 1880’s after which he and his wife ran a boarding house in Castle Road.
One of his sons – Thomas Woodall Nicholson (born 1848) moved to Halifax during the 1860’s to be apprenticed to a local coachbuilder there – probably that of George Piercy of Carlton Street.
George Piercy (born 1805 in Harrogate) was the son of Thomas Piercy (born 1779) who had established a coachbuilding business in Halifax in about 1820, building horsedrawn cabs and carriages.
In 1873 Thomas Woodall Nicholson bought out Piercey’s business and changed its name to his own.
He died in 1914 and the business was taken over by his son Charles Woodall Nicholson. Under new management from 1933 the company, whose works were situated in Well Lane at the bottom end of the town, began to specialise in building hearses mostly on Rolls Royce chassis in the early days, though later on other types – particularly the Austin Princess 4-litre.
In the early postwar period the company briefly diversified into bus bodywork, and a small number of very smart examples were built on such as Bedford OB and Commer chassis. An example of an OB for Tillingbourne Valley can be seen here: http://www.sct61.org.uk/tl689  
They also rebuilt or refurbished a considerable number of prewar single deckers – particularly for United Automobile.
In 1983 the company passed to the Hawley Group, which two years previously had bought Woodall Nicholson’s main rival in the hearse business – Coleman Milne of Westhoughton. The Halifax works was closed in 1987 and all manufacture moved to the Coleman Milne works.
Coleman Milne was owned by the Henley Group, which in turn passed to the Hawley Group in 1985. Hawley sold Henley and Coleman Milne to Plaxton’s in 1989, but Coleman Milne was sold to a management buyout team in 1992, Woodall Nicholson becoming the holding company for Coleman Milne, Mellor Coachcraft and Mellor Vancraft. Recently the company has passed to a private investment syndicate.

John Stringer

02/07/15 – 05:40

After Bluebird Vehicles went into receivership RH 206 passed (according to PSVC) to Miller, Scarborough.
Apparently it has now passed to Barry Dodd the Lord Lieutenant of North Yorkshire

John Wakefield

03/07/15 – 06:33

Thanks, John for the updated information on ownership, where does Barry Dodd (the Lord Lieutenant of NY) reside? Any idea of dates?

Keith Easton

RH 206_lr Vehicle reminder shot for this posting

31/07/15 – 06:38

According to my records 156 and 158 passed to a Mr Arthur Dixon of Washington Street, Beverley Road, Hull in 1948 for use as caravans. They were purchased by the EY Tiger Group in February 1982 (not sure who they were). 156 was broken up by August 1987. 158 then passed to a Mike Kilvington in August 1987 – he was based in Rugby but I believe he originated from the Hull area. His intention was to have it restored by apprentices at one of the colleges in Hull and I believe he was responsible for the work carried out. It then passed to Carl Ireland – it was then advertised in Bus and Coach Preservation Magazine in August 2001 for £8000 before passing to Bluebird. Bluebird also had at least one other vehicle their apprentices were to work on – I think this was a Southdown TD.

Rod Hebden


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