The page for enthusiasts in the Oxford Chilterns Area - News from you and news for you - pictures too  ~~~~   The page for enthusiasts in the Oxford Chilterns Area - News from you and news for you - pictures too  ~~~~   The page for enthusiasts in the Oxford Chilterns Area - News from you and news for you - pictures too  

Issue 220
Sunday 18th March 2007
next update week ending 10th April 2007

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

Visit the "OXFORD BUS PAGE" Archive 1998 - 2002

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

To see the pictures full size just click on the thumbnail

A note regarding photographs which show drivers faces.
Following one complaint from a driver of a bus in Oxford but considering the fact that the photographs are taken of the vehicle not any person,
I will blank out the face to avoid any discomfort to the individual concerned. If you are the person involved send me an email to have this action taken.
I am sure people will realise that to ask everyone in advance of publication, whose face may appear in a picture is wholly impractical in both time and practice.
I am sorry to have to mention such a matter but we now live in a world of human rights and political correctness which must be considered.

Another week passes by and I am sure someone can tell me how many shopping days there are to Christmas. The past week has been one of some interest. I was alerted by Ed Maun to the fact that the OCBP was menti
oned in Coach & Bus Week and when I read the small note I did feel that my efforts each week were worthwhile.

I must thank all my contributors once again as it they who add to the value of the page each week.

Please note that there will be no issue next week as I will be away in Scotland attending a wedding. Next update will be on Sunday 1st April 2007.

More pictures from Victoria Coach Station 75th Anniversary celebrations from Peter Edgar & Colin Cooke

Peter Edgar writes "As already reported last week, the Victoria Coach Station anniversary event was a relatively low key affair, with a distinct lack of advance event publicity. However the back  drop of this wonderful (working) building was not to be missed. With a small collection of good enthusiast stalls and individuals dressing up to suit the period, I found it to be a most enjoyable event."

Pure nostalgia

Picture by Colin Cooke




Both Peter & Colin sent pictures of the coaches attending the event.

Heyfordian and Tappins getting together - a clarification

Richard writes re the item last week saying "Just looked at your latest and saw that Heyfordian have taken over Tappins.  Sorry!  You've been misinformed.  The correct position is: 

A new company Tappins Coaches Limited was incorporated on 24 January 2007, registered no. 06065092, with registered office at 195 Banbury Road, Oxford, OX2 7AR. Managing Director: Graham Harvey Smith.  Company Secretary: Jeremy James Smith. 

Application made for an Operator's Licence:  PH1068084SI, in the name of TAPPINS COACHES LIMITED t/a Tappins Coaches 

OC Collett Road, Southmead, DIDCOT: VA 50

OC Knitesbridge Farm, Blaydon, KIDLINGTON: VA10

OC Murdoch Road, BICESTER: VA10 

Tom Tappin Limted sold their coaches and Tappins Coaches' goodwill to Tappins Coaches Limited with effect from 00.01 hours on Wednesday 7 March 2007.  Tom Tappin Ltd retains the freehold on the Didcot site and is leasing it to Tappins Coaches Limited.  Also, Tom Tappin Limited continues to operate the Oxford City Sightseeing franchise from its OC at Osneymead, Oxford with a VA of 10 and the 10 open top double deckers.


Technically, Heyfordian (Heyfordain Travel Limited t/a) have not taken over any of the Tappin's business or vehicles.  Though admittedly,  Graham and Jeremy Smith are directors of Heyfordian Holdings Ltd and Heyfordian Travel Ltd, which also have registered offices at 195 Banbury Rd, Oxford.

One wonders if the operation of the 67 will be transferred from Bicester to Didcot? 

Malcolm, the above are facts.  Now for what I've understood from Caz who now drives at Didcot.  Graham is running Tappins Coaches Limited and it is intended to retain the Tappins livery and build up the new company t/a Tappins Coaches." 

The coming months should indeed prove interesting for this new grouping.

M25 Closed at Junction 17 Sunday PM

Colin Cooke writes "For those of you caught up in the closure of the M25 anti clockwise at Junction 17 all Sunday 11th afternoon, you can see the reason why in the photo below."

Request from a reader

I am asked if anyone has any pictures of a COMS driver called Freddie Howes? I understand he may no longer be with us but maybe somewhere there is a picture or pictures of him when driving with COMS/OBC.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Amersham & District Running days 2007 - dates for your diary 

Amersham & District Running Days for 2007 are as follows: 

Sun 13 May 2007 - 3rd Slough/Windsor Running Day based on Slough Bus Station 

Sun 24 June 2007 - 2nd Hemel Hempstead Running Day based on Hemel Hempstead Bus Station                        

Sun 30 September 2007 - 19th Amersham Running Day based on Amersham but commemorating the 30th anniversary of the closure of HE Garage (30/09/1977) so there will be a reconstruction of certain routes in the High Wycombe area.

Another good week for news although the picture stakes have been a little less than usual.

Malcolm Crowe - Sunday 18th March 2007

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

News of the local companies – 18th March 2007

Ben Carter writes "I believe there was another Arriva bus fire today, on a single decker of some description on the 30 down from Lane End. I

t would appear the driver evacuated the passengers on board (one of them my grandmother) up on Cressex business estate and flagged down a passing carousel 339 that was not too far behind due to the Arriva being late.

As of yet I am unsure of what bus it was, but I thought i should inform and see if anyone knew more?"


I must apologise to Glenn Knight in that last week I quoted some pictures as being taken in Dunstable. They were in fact taken in Luton. The page has been corrected.

Gavin Francis sent some nice pictures of Arriva in High Wycombe.

Gain caught up with 3838, the TfL Dart again, this time on the 32.

Chirs Maxfield sent a picture of an interesting reappearance of an ex Wycombe bus saying "Taken in Crewe now operating for D&G coach & bus."

picture by Chris Maxfield

Steve Warwick writes to note "L26CAY 33 seater MAN is now re-registered 481 HYE from today 14/3/07." 

I am sure this registration was on a Metrorider?

Gavin has been operating the 737 service this week and caught up with the coach below at Stansted. I think it came from First off the Reading Rail Air service. It must now be with Go West Midlan ds as it was working the 777.

Picture by Gavin Francis.

The company turned out a Citaro for Red Nose day and gave all the fares received to charity. I do not have any pictures at the time of writing.

The first of the new Panthers were seen on delivery last week.

Marcus Lapthorn writes "I spotted the above vehicle apparently leaving the City today Wed 14 March) @ 1330, as it passed through Kidlington in the direction of the M40 northbound. It had various replacement body panels in bare metal and had lost most of its branding. I guess that it may have been on its way north for refurbishment?"

A reader reports that an X90 coach was involved in a fairly serious accident approaching Green Road from London last Friday. The road was closed for some time whilst the occupant of a car was cut free by rescue services. No further details are known but our best wishes go to all those involved in this unfortunate episode.

Pearces of Oxford

Gavin Francis caught up with this Pearces coach at Stansted.

A quiet week with Dart 33821 returning from repaint at Banbury, having been internally refurbished at Oxford. The final Dart of this type, 33822, has received similar treatment and is now at Banbury for repaint. Both buses have also received new destination displays.

The repainted X5 livery appeared in Oxford last week on Monday, 12th March, just in time for Gavin Francis to record the event.


Marcus Lapthorn had mentioned that Volvo coach 52157 had reappeared on the 66 in recent weeks. I notice in Buses for March that this coach has been reinstated.

Also in the same magazine it is noted that ex Oxford Tube coach 52030, M107XBW, has been converted to a trainer and is based at Morecambe.

Picture taken in Glasgow by Chris Maxfield.


Ben Morroll sent two very nice pictures of the refurbished Volvo/Plaxtons which once ran for OBC on the X90 and previously were with Shearings. His two pictures are taken in Cheltenham.



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

Peter Edgar writes "Timebus Travel returned RM 1871 to the road today in a  Silver Livery. This bus appeared as one of the 25 RM's that were painted silver to celebrate the Queens Silver Jubilee in 1977, and advertised Exide Batteries."


Further memories of the short Ford ex Midland Red used by COMS from Steve Annells

Steve sent a nice picture taken at Didcot saying "Reference to 674 (YHA393J), the shortened Ford R192 acquired from Midland Red on the Oxford and Chilterns Bus page led me to look out this
slide of 674 leaving Didcot station on route 322 dated August 1978".

Marlow memories from Ed Maun


If you have any pictures or historical memories and wish to submit them for this page please send them to the me at

Coming events, models and useful links

New casting from Britbus

A new casting with a local flavour has been released by Britbus as a picture from Mark Lyons shows. It is a nice model but as Mark says, a little pricey at £33.

Oxford Bus 125 commemorative book

In last week's issue I mentioned that Oxford Bus were publishing a book to commemorate the 125 years of public transport in Oxford. Thanks to Phil Ashworth I have had a review copy and hereunder give my thoughts on this book.

The book is well presented and includes a number of historical pictures of interest including some I had not seen before. The modern pictures have received a nice treatment reflecting the modern fleet against a background of typical Oxford architecture. The Botley Road rail bridge gets a mention and a picture of an AEC pre war decker which has done battle with said bridge and come off worse from its encounter is included.

The book, whilst rather small to reflect the 125 years in detail is nevertheless a must for all who love Oxford, historians and enthusiasts alike.

Copies of the book can be bought from the Oxford Bus Company, Cowley House, Watlington Rd, Oxford OX4 6GA. The cost is £5.95 including postage. Cheques should be made payable to "Oxford Bus Company", it is also available in person from the Oxford Bus Museum during normal opening hours. 

DVD s by Robin Clare

The full details of DVDs available from Robin Clare may be found at his web site :-

Latest Citaro models revealed

Dave Rogers sent the following press release.


Mercedes-Benz Citaro - ukbus 5004 Arriva Manchester  -  ukbus 5007 Oxford Bus


Creative Master Northcord Limited is proud to release two brand new liveries on its well known Mercedes-Benz Citaro casting. Both models have received significant, yet different, modifications to the tooling in order to represent, as close to 100% accuracy as possible, the real buses on the roads. 

ukbus 5004 represents fleet number Arriva North West’s 2851 (CX55 EAA). This Mercedes Citaro is one of three such vehicles with dedicated route branding for service 700 and with the destination set to Manchester. The model features a redesigned interior layout that includes the reduced seating capacity and luggage racks. 

Starting on 29th October 2005, Arriva North West’s service 700 runs from Manchester’s Piccadilly Railway Station to Liverpool’s John Lennon Airport. For the service, 3 Mercedes-Benz Citaro buses were purchased and numbered 2851-3. They were painted in the same style and colours as the Scania OmniCity buses that already operated between John Lennon and Liverpool city centre. 

ukbus 5007 represents fleet number 830 (X13 OXF) of Oxford Bus Company. 830 entered service in December 2003, to upgrade the X3 & X13 Oxford – Abingdon services. The bus was painted in a new and distinctive livery designed by Best Impressions. 

ukbus 5007 features the smooth, curved windscreen with the destination display set behind the windscreen glass rather than the protruding destination found on the Park & Ride Citaros in the fleet. This feature is one of the standard specifications on other Citaros that the Go-Ahead Group has purchased. 

Mercedes-Benz Citaro ukbus 5004 and 5007 models are each a one-piece casting whose clean lines accentuate the square-mounted, double-glazed windows and the livery application on which all logos and lettering are clearly legible. Another main feature on both models is the extensive portrayal of handrails. The headlight / indicator units at the front and indicator / tail light units at the rear are made of individual components to look more realistic.


The brand new single-door Mercedes-Benz Citaro bus models will be distributed by John Ayrey Die-Casts Limited (UK), Porte Publishing Company (Japan) and Concorde Hobby Shop (HK) respectively. The ukbus 5004 and 5007 models are limited to 1700 pieces worldwide respectively. 


Would readers who respond to the above please quote my site when doing so.

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please let me know on

Visit the "OXFORD BUS PAGE" Archive 1998 - 2002

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


These are three most interesting sites which I do recommend

Bus Zone Logo (2421 bytes)

Mike Penn's photo page with much from Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire as well as Buckinghamshire

Chris Lowe's Photo page - mainly North West UK

The Oxford Bus Museum

Ray Jackson Art

A web site which has paintings of buses.
Nice present for a Christmas or Birthday wish list !!


Stagecoach Handbook for 2006
from British Bus Publishing

Arriva Handbook for 2006-2007
from British Bus Publishing

The latest handbooks are now on sale, the ever
popular Stagecoach edition now in its 13th year.


Bus Services in Buckinghamshire

Bus services in Oxfordshire

Where are the Chilterns?

Visit this informative site through the link below.

back to home page
Map showing the Chilterns Hills beginning in Oxfordshire in the Thames Valley and stretching north-east through Buckinghamshire and Bedfordshire to Hitchin in Hertfordshire. The highest points are over 250m. There are various water courses running from the Chilterns to the South East.

Visit the "OXFORD BUS PAGE" Archive 1998 - 2002

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