Issue 29

Monday 5th May 2003

next update week ending 18th May 2003

Please note that any comments made in this news page are those of the Editors' and in no way constitute 
any official points of view from the bus companies mentioned,  or indeed any other official body. 
As a news page we reserve the right to make valid comments as seen from an editorial point of view.

If you wish to be included on a mailing list where I will advise of any mid week news please
let me know on

Another Bank Holiday is upon us as I write this week's page. The weather has been reasonably kind in our part of the world and I have enjoyed a days rest having spent yesterday on an early X90 turn to London. The first trip back was subject to some dealy due an unfortunate incident at Carfax involving one of the local operators buses. This meant some diversions for a number of services which would normally have used St Aldates. however as I found upon arrival in Gloucester Green, Oxford on a Sunday morning around 0830 is rather a deserted place and the incident had been cleared away within 3 hours, certainly by the time more people were stirring from their Sunday morning slumbers. To get past the incident one had to drive around the wrong side of the traffic island to enter St Aldates.

Approaching the incident last Sunday morning, traffic was stationery whilst police were working
and when we got going we had to use the wrong side of road.

This week has seen a dearth of news from my correspondents and so this is somewhat a short page. Even both local papers lacked any bus news. I am sure this will change for next week and look forward to your reports.

One thing I have noticed for sometime now in Oxford is the strange way the traffic lights are set in a number of locations. for example at The Swan at the top of Cowley Road the sequence is really odd. Traffic can come city bound towards Cowley Road whereas traffic leaving Oxford is stopped. I often wonder why this is and the same occurs at the bottom of Headington Hill. I am sure there is a reason but suffice to say it often seems to hold up traffic for no obvious reason. I wonder???

On another matter of traffic in Oxford, yet again I raise the point of the abuse by so many motorists of the bus/taxi only areas such as that the end of Speedwell Street leading round to Castle Street. Why is nothing done about this abuse, the police being almost totally absent from this area in terms of enforcing the road signs.


Ray Jackson's painting of COMS 703 at Great Tew, Oxon.

An exhibition of paintings is to be held at

Witney & District Museum
Gloucester Court Mews
High Street, Witney
01993 775915

11th to 15th June 2003

I am sure that many of you may wish to visit this exhibition which is focused on buses and offers the chance to see some excellent work by various artists.

Malcolm Crowe, May 5th 2003.

Visit the "OXFORD BUS PAGE" Archive 1998 - 2002

Visit the "OXFORD & CHILTERN BUS PAGE " Archives from October 2002

News of the local companies - 5th May 2003

Abbey Coaches

The ex Beckwith Leyland Tiger now with Abbey Coaches, XIB2679.

Airlinks - National Express

From this issue any reports in this area will be found under The National Express heading further down the page.

Arriva serving The Shires

Steve Warwick writes

Fri 2nd May

Scania 3166 working the 323 Aylesbury-Wycombe service.

Sat 3rd May

Optare Solo 0447 working the 4 service today.

Olympian 5071 and Scania 3166 on 54 Halton Camp's.

Olympian 5100 on 500 Watford service, while HH also had an Olympian 5127 on the 500's newly painted into corporate livery after being gold for the Queen's Jubilee.

Mention was made lat week's issue that Dart SLF 3178 had moved to Wycombe.
It still carries the route details from its previous garage.

Overhaul work takes place in three locations within Newlands Bus Station at Wycombe.
Here a Mercedes minibus is seen on lifts at the back of the standing area.

Nigel Peach writes "All Leyland Olympian 5132 H202 GRO was in Wycombe bus station Friday lunchtime, displaying route 362 but with no destination blind fitted. According to the Arriva book this bus is based at Watford."  (It was not present on Bank holiday Monday morning when I visited NBS. Ed.)

Carousel of High Wycombe

Graeme Wilson writes "You may be interested to hear that Carousel had an ex-Armchair Olympian on route 336 today, running alongside MCW Metrobus KYV703X. Sadly I did not see which it was, but it was in full fleet livery."

Lynx LX559 now sports a side advert for a Chinese restaurant.

Ex Armchair Olympian 564 is now resplendent in Carousel red.

City of Oxford Motor Services - The Oxford Bus Company.

Some changes to the regular vehicle allocations have taken place recently and to bring you up to date please note:

Route 13 now has one Trident allocated and one Dart SLF is allocated to the 16. Changes in schedules from May 11th mean that there will only be four Citaros allocated to the 500 and as such Citaros will now see more regular service on the 300 and 400 roads.

Coaches reallocated as a result of the recent Scania deliveries are that 22 and 24 have received X90 branding and it is expected that 20, 21, 23 and 25 will follow.

Withdrawn coach 1 has been seen on L duties pending disposal. Coaches 2 & 5 have been withdrawn, however 3, 4, 6 and 7 are still in service.

A surprise appearance was that of loaned Trident 929 in full Park & Ride livery. This picture
seems to emphasise the height which limits it use to 300 and 500 services, 400 having eh low bridge by the station.

929 seen in service last Sunday morning.

One of the Volvo B10BLEs , 802, which has received new destination equipment.
These types are often used on 13 road in the evening.

802 has received revised style rear lights.

Oxford Bus operates the City Circle in the evenings and on Sundays. Here 402 is seen in
Worcester Street last Sunday.

I always think clean wheels are important in the overall appearance of a bus or coach.
Olympian 223 had just had its wheels done last Friday evening. It is seen on relief duties in Oxford.

I am delighted that Oxford bus have provided a current fleet list which can be viewed by clicking the attached link

FLEET LIST 29th April 2003

During my travels I see many National Express coaches and with the revision in image and the disappearance of the old brandings I was pleased to see my first coach in the new livery.

A new volvo/Plaxton WX03ZFG works the 040 service to Bristol last Sunday.

Leaving VCS on its journey to Bristol, the new coach catches the strong sunlight.

Those few pictures I've seen miss showing the rear of the new livery. Note the SHUTTLE branding.

A livery set to disappear is the Airbus branding. Poor 315 looks somewhat forlorn at VCS.
you can almost hear the intending passengers saying, "...a coach, its more like a van" !!!

Stagecoach in Oxfordshire & Stagecoach in Oxford

Few fleet members now sport the old livery, who would have imagined Stagecoach without stripes.

SC Oxford MAN 22924 rounds the corner into George Street on a Kidlington service, still unbranded as a route.

Branded 22942 works a route 1 service into Oxford, pausing at The Swan to pick up.

One that got away, training bus 772 passes the opposition offices last Friday.

The back and the front of it, The Tube that is. 50040 rests in the morning sun alongside 50066 at GG.

If you have a digital camera and wish to submit photos for this page please send them to the me at

The Dennis Lances used at Heathrow until recently have all been sold as the new Scanias arrive.
Here 962 hurries along the M40 northwards and a new home, who knows where?
A sister bus had broken down in the Stokenchurch cutting.

Steve Warwick sent this fine shot of a Citaro artic on the 436 will fellow Go-Ahead company London Central/

Well, I asked the question and several of you wrote to me.
Douglas Scott writes "
In the item about Red Rose in your current News Page, you ask about the
history of Volvo B9R D303PEV. According to my very limited research in the
LOTS London Bus Fleetbook for years 1992-1997, the bus was new to Harris Bus
in 1986, the Chelmsford LVLO registration giving a clue, and stayed with that
fleet until 1997. It does not appear in 1998 book and I haven't had time to
look into what happened to it between Harris and Red Rose.
I hope this is useful. I always enjoy your page and its mix of business and
enthusiast items.

I welcome your photos for inclusion on this page. Please send them to me at

This is a most interesting site which I do recommend

For the national renumbering of The Stagecoach Fleet, I have been speaking to Bill Potter of British Bus Publishing. This company has produced a handbook with the full listing and details.

A special offer has been negotiated with Bill and he is prepared to let my readers have a copy of the new handbook for a reduced price of 15.25 (1 less than the cover price) if you call him on 01952 255669 or visit the web site mentioning:

The Oxford Chiltern Bus Page.

The main site address is  I am sure many of you will want to take advantage of this offer.

Visit the "OXFORD BUS PAGE" Archive 1998 - 2002

Visit the "OXFORD & CHILTERN BUS PAGE " Archives from October 2002