Halifax Parade 1968

Halifax Parade 1968

I have, at last, processed all the pictures from the Halifax Parade held in 1968 to commemorate the running of the first tram in the Borough in 1898. Sadly, it would seem that some of these buses are no longer in existence:- ONW 2 and HUP 662 are both thought to have been scrapped, and I have been unable to ascertain the fate of some of the others. Of the rest, whilst they still continue to exist, several are no longer in running order. Any information regarding any of the vehicles would be gratefully received.

Just click on the montage below to launch the gallery then click the play button it is a bit slow to start but it will, by the way putting your mouse pointer over the shot will pause the show.

Roger Cox

30/09/11 - 18:46

Excellent presentation of superb photos, thank you Roger


01/10/11 - 06:48

May I also say what a fine set of pictures not only for the buses but for the scenes in the backgrounds. How things have changed and no doubt Halifax looks much different today. I'm sure the many experts here will be able to track down the fates on the vehicles pictured and hopefully all but the lost two will have survived. Thank you for posting them.

Richard Leaman

01/10/11 - 11:13

A great array of nostalgic photos Roger. It's sort of nostalgia about nostalgia. I was there too and remember the day well. Bus rallies of any kind were still relatively rare - especially in the North - so this was a momentous and most exciting occasion. One thing that I can't help noticing is how immaculately dressed most of the enthusiasts were in those days - particularly the younger ones - all suits and ties !

John Stringer

01/10/11 - 11:16

Wonderful gallery, Roger, for which many thanks. Sad about the two that didn't make it. The most unexpected vehicle (to my eyes) is CWX 617, the Roe-rebodied Bristol K, looking thoroughly 1950-ish from the front, with low bonnet and front hubs to match, but half-egg rear hubs. I've never seen it around. These early-preservation-days rallies---this one taking place over two average bus-lives ago---are historic pieces in their own right.

Ian Thompson

02/10/11 - 07:02

I think we can take it that ONW 2 was lost, I'm sure we would know about it today if otherwise. It's interesting that following Ledgards October 1967 demise, it was still active the following year, the date of this parade. What a tragic loss it was!

Chris Barker

02/10/11 - 07:04

The TD1 and the Rotherham Crossley went to Leicester with Geoff Hilditch and are now in the Science Museum collection. The Keighley Bristol is a stalwart of the rally scene and lives at the Keighley bus museum. Hopefully others who contribute will be able to locate some of the others. The "tram" was a converted Yorkshire Woollen PD2 with a mock up body that had been used by YWD in the sixties to commemorate their own first trams.

Chris Hough

02/10/11 - 07:10

Earlier on I did some research and am pleased to note that near enough all of the vehicles in the parade are still around, some in superb condition but others not quite so lucky. I read that AEC Regal VO 6806 and Leyland Lion PLSC1 JCP 60K/J 4601 are in store at the Science Museum facility based at Wroughton Aerodrome, Wiltshire. Some years ago I had the chance to visit those massive hangers which contain an unbelievable amount of interesting things but did note that the buses and coaches held there were fairly neglected. Dry and safe maybe but appeared to have been driven into storage, switched off and left untouched. Those I saw were covered in dust and would need a far amount of work to be recommissioned for the road. I hope these two have fared better since their last public sightings. Sadly the hangers are not open to the public any longer so the wonders stored there are "lost" from view and when I saw them, not well stored or preserved. Maybe things have improved in the last ten years.

Richard Leaman

02/10/11 - 07:11

ONW 2 wasn't actually preserved at the time of the parade. It was on loan from Norths (dealers) to Halifax Corporation for evaluation as a driver trainer. However, Norths neglected to tell Halifax about its 2-stroke engine. Once Geoffrey Hilditch found out about that, he wasn't interested, but before sending it back he entered it in the parade in the hope that someone would buy it for preservation - which I did! Unfortunately it wasn't long before I moved away to further what I then thought was going to be my career, and eventually sold it on to another member of the same group. In the 1970s ONW 2 proved rather more adept at dealing with those new-fangled motorway things than most vehicles of its generation, and became a victim of its own success, arguably being thrashed to death. It suffered a catastrophic engine failure and was controversially scrapped on the assumption that no suitable replacement engine would ever be found.

Peter Williamson

02/10/11 - 12:03

I must differ about the identity of the 'tram' mock up. Yorkshire Woollen had indeed converted a Roe-bodied PD2/3 (661, HD 8515) in such a manner some time previously for it's celebrations in 1965, but the one depicted was actually ACP 391, formerly Halifax's Training Bus 418. This started out life as Leyland-bodied PD2/1 342, later renumbered 107. In 1963 it was involved in a low bridge incident in Stainland Road near the former Greetland Station, and was then converted into an open-topped Training Bus numbered 418. It could also then serve as a tree-lopper when necessary. Clearly Geoffrey Hilditch had been inspired by the YWD version. Incredibly a full set of original reversible tram seats was unearthed from goodness knows where and installed into it. A lot of ingenuity and time must have gone into the conversion - one can't imagine the same thing happening today. It made a small number of other public appearances over the next year or so, after which it languished in the back of Elmwood Garage for quite some time, but was then quietly despatched to a Barnsley breaker with some more modern buses, presumably with it's tram seats.
I would like to think that the scrap man concerned would realise the rarity of the seats and would pass them on to tram preservationists. Does anybody know if this happened ?

John Stringer

02/10/11 - 14:16

John is right about the identity of the "tram" in the Halifax Parade, as this uncropped shot showing it alongside the little Albion shows conclusively. ACP 391 was the very first bus that I ever drove, and, as I then had only a motorcycle licence, I found the decidedly heavy controls of this ponderous, well worn, open top veteran something of a shock.

Roger Cox

02/05/12 - 11:11

Brilliant gallery, I'd forgotten how many vehicles were in that procession. I also at the time did not realise the number that were running on trade plates!! Three points:-
1) Looking at the last shot of the replica tram, I think the seats upstairs look like Blackpool open boat seats, (I have turned them a few times as a tram driver), this would fit in as 3 boats were scrapped in 1968, and never received the 6-- fleet numbers.
2) The shot of the Lytham Tiger is interesting in the fact that there just happens to be a now preserved bus passing in the shape of AEC mark V 215.
3) I was in 1A at Crossley and Porter in Sept 1970 which was great for watching the driving school going past the window. I am trying to remember whether it was the Swindon Utility Guy, or the Rotherham Crossley that was the training bus, along with the all cream Beverley bar Leyland. Can anyone help on that one?

Chris Ratcliffe

02/05/12 - 17:13

Hi Chris. Funny you should mention the use of one of these as a training bus by HPT. Only a week or two back I posted a photo of three Crossleys lined up at Rotherham's depot, and referred to the use of HET 213 for training. I arrived on the scene at HPT in 1973, so just too late to have the privilege, but a colleague of mine told me he remembered training in it, and he passed his test in 1971 or 1972.
The ex-East Yorkshire PD2 'Yellow Peril' - 403, MKH 81 - was also withdrawn just before I started my training. It was sold to Inspector Tony Gallagher for preservation, but almost immediately badly vandalised and so sold for scrap.
Two ex-Todmorden PD2's - 355 & 356 - had also been used as training buses around this time, but I just missed out on those also, and my training taking place mostly using PD2's 67 and 221, which had expired CoF's and were awaiting overhaul and recertification (and my goodness did they need it !), and also any other spare bus that happened to become available for an hour or so.

John Stringer

03/07/17 - 16:31

So pleased to see this collection - I attended this event but didn't manage such a brilliant set in B & W!
One question Roger - do you have the pr-cised date of the event please?
I reckon it must have been May or June 1968?

Peter Greaves

04/07/17 - 07:04

Peter, the Parade was held in June 1968 to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the opening of the tramway system on 9th June 1898, and a souvenir timetable was issued for the event. For Halifax aficionados, a short film is available on the following site showing several aspects of life in the town during the period 1951-65, and glimpses of buses and coaches feature quite a lot. (You can nip out for a cup of tea or something stronger during the two hairdressing competitions - did we really wear our hair like that back then?) See this link

Roger Cox

04/07/17 - 07:04

The event was held on the day of the annual Halifax Charity Gala - Saturday, 15th June, 1968.

John Stringer



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