Rhondda Regents

Rhondda Regents

I have scanned through the numerous pages on this very interesting site (full marks for content), but I am still looking for pics/info about the AEC Regents that Rhondda Transport used in the late 1940s and into the early 1950s, I spent lots of school holidays in the area and these vehicles were always favourites of mine along with the N&C fleet, the Neath and Cardiff Express coaches, I seem to recall they were mainly of the AEC marque as well? I do have a copy of the Glory Days/BET Group and there is a cracking shot in there of a 1950 AEC Regent 111 in Devon General livery, and its got the very same curving lower panels on the lower body sides and it looks like the very same crimson livery, very smart and sadly lacking from todays buses, a pointer to where I might find the above pics would be very appreciated.

Dave Knapp

10/03/12 - 16:09

Do you mean the provincial type like this: http://www.flickr.com Or the LONDON RT type like this (after it had been sold by Rhondda): one on Old Bus Photos

Chris Hebbron

13/03/12 - 06:31

Many thanks to yourself Chris Hebron, the photograph you posted in reply to my query was magnificent, just as I remembered them, AEC Regents in the valleys, I must say there seems to be a scarcity of any in depth literature/photographs of the Rhondda Transport Co. I do have several books, photographic mainly, and as I say very little about the above company. If anybody can point me in the right direction I would be obliged to them. I have mentioned elsewhere that I drove for Bristol Omnibus Co. for 6 1/2 years, and in amongst that great throng of Bristol/Eastern Coachwork vehicles, 100s of them, all engined by Bristol or Gardner there was one solitary vehicle, an LS, REG NO. UHT 494, FLEET NUMBER 2884, I drove it frequently, I transferred to the Bus Station from the City services in Jan. 1963, and this bus was one of the pool of vehicles that was used on our rotas, and the point being, it was powered by an AEC engine, she used to fly along, had a lovely smooth gearbox, a good un it was said, but unique. Of course there were steadily reducing numbers of Bristol K deckers, but very thin on the ground by this time, and they were AEC equipped, it was a rare treat to drive something different. But the icing on the cake was yet to come, I believe it was a year later, Wilts & Dorset took over the Porton Down company, Silver Star, and amongst the goodies that they acquired were 3 Atlanteans which they passed on to Bristol Omnibus, sadly they didn't stay long, one of them was at the Warminster Running Day last October looking fine in her retirement. Once again Chris many thanks.

Dave Knapp

14/03/12 - 06:43

You are absolutely right, Dave, Rhondda Transport seems to have passed bus historians/writers by. I have found a potted history, as part of a larger book, with a magnificent photo of an AEC Regent III in its prime. Enjoy here: http://www.ourvalleysheritage.org.uk/Book/Transport.pdf

Chris Hebbron

14/03/12 - 17:48

Actually, with some digging on the web, Dave, Iíve found some books on Rhondda Transport: see these links:
The Rhondda Transport Company Ltd - Buses in the Rhondda Valleys South Wales - DAVIES GARETH CALAN http://www.antiqbook.co.uk/boox/ctl/28122.shtml
Rhondda Transport Company [Paperback] http://www.amazon.co.uk/Rhondda-Transport-Company/dp/6132338314
The above two may be one and the same.

Chris Hebbron

14/03/12 - 17:53

My grandparents lived in Tonypandy from 1915 onwards so I grew up with regular holidays and day trips as we lived in Bristol. I clearly remember the Rhondda bus fleet and wish that I could send in a picture of the terminus that was in Pandy Square, Tonypandy. Several vehicles would park up and in my mind I see them clearly and I always thought that they did look quite similar to Devon General because my other relations lived in Dawlish. The dark red paintwork and vehicles matched well. Sadly, taking pictures on expensive film meant that taking them of a bus never passed through my father's mind and I was in a p'ram at the time but still I can see and even hear those buses idling quietly "down Pandy".

Richard Leaman

15/03/12 - 09:30

Many thanks again Chris, that is surely a superb shot of the Rhondda Regent in Pontypridd, I know our memories play tricks sometimes, but this is exactly how I remembered them, always well turned out and a treat to behold, I wished that we had buses of that ilk in Bristol ? As mentioned already I subsequently became a driver with Bristol Omnibus, but the Tilling green and cream was no match for the lustrous Rhondda Red, it was truly a "transport of delight", or even a bit of Houseman, "that was the land of lost content", enough to make me cry into my pint later on, or one more quote, "gone with regret" thanks again for your help, I will see if I can locate some of the books you mentioned.

Dave Knapp

15/03/12 - 09:30

I contributed an article to Classic Bus back in June-July 1998 on Rhondda Buses and about the same time an article in BUSES on the modern Rhondda Buses which happened to be taken over by Stagecoach between writing and publishing. I've had a long-term interest in the operator and agree it's very poorly documented and what photographs exist all seem to be in the same few places. Such a pity as the top of the Rhondda Fawr is quite dramatic. I spent quite some time photographing up there in the last days of the Regent Vs and have attached a shot of one passing under the old Rhondda and Swansea Bay line on its way to Blaencwm terminus. When days get extended to 36 hours I'll have chance to add these to my online gallery!

David Beilby

16/10/12 - 10:01

On the excellent East Yorkshire Motor Services website there is a picture of ex-Rhondda RT-type AEC Regent III (Weymann body) 218 (GNY 370) standing next to ex-East Yorkshire 666 (HGC 294), a Duple-bodied Daimler CWA6 new to London Transport as D167 but which had reached East Yorkshire via the White Bus Service of Bridlington. To the right of the ex-Rhondda vehicle looks to be another of the same type, but it is unidentifiable. Previous owners' markings have been obliterated, so it would seem the shot was taken in a dealer's premises c1958. Here is the link.

David Call

27/02/13 - 08:25

With regards David Bs comment above 'what photographs exist all seem to be in the same few places'.

Here are three photos that maybe of interest one Bus and two Tram related.

I worked for Rhondda and they were very good to work for, in the fitting shop first as an apprentice then as a fitter. I even bought a few AEC Regents later on as I became a Driving Instructor and used a few Regents.
As a family we still have a coach fleet and we are in the old Rhondda Tramways Depot in Porth and have been since National Welsh closed about 1989/90.

Trevor Thomas



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