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 163
(OBP-378)

Sunday 29th January 2006
next update week ending 10th February 2006

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
malcolmhc@aol.com

A number of interesting issues are reported this week plus a thought or two from your editor.

Sunday 29th sees a change to the X90 "oxford espress" Oxford-London service of this The Oxford Bus Company of which full details are to be found under that operators heading.

I am conscious of the fact that recently, apart from a few pictures of new buses, I have not been giving readers much in the way of pictures depicting current operations. I spent 30 minutes on Magdalen Bridge last Saturday and the results are shown below under the respective operators headings. In general due to the road conditions buses are rather dirty but there are a few cases of rather clean looking buses considering the conditions.

Once again Derek Doling has supplied a number of interesting pictures from the Thames Valley/South Midland era. Also Martin Isles and john Bristow have added contributions for this week's page.

Quarterly Video Newsletter

I am in the process of working on a quarterly video newsletter which will be available on DVD, probably in the middle of March. Please let me know those of you are interested in receiving a copy. There will be a charge of 10 plus postage and packing, about 2. The content will reflect what is going on in the area covered by this page with the chance to really get the feel of how the area is developing. I would also appreciate receiving your thoughts on what you would like to be included? E-mail me at malcolmhc@aol.com

DDA compliant coaches - (Disability Discrimination Act)

In speaking to a number of operators over the past months it has become clear that for the smaller operator the whole business of having a DDA compliant fleet of coaches is posing some interesting problems.

These are in a nutshell finding a) the right type of coach - buses are of course much easier, b) what is going to happen to those coaches purchased recently which are not DDA compliant - the resale value in say 7 to 10 years time may be much lower than the actual book value due their unsuitability for further work, c) currently the Government does not accept less than 100% of the fleet being DDA compliant by the time the act is fully implemented.

A suggestion has been made that a percentage of the fleet should be fully DDA compliant to ensure an operator can supply the correct type of coach but I hasten to add this only a suggestion and has no official weight.

Obviously the DDA does have serious benefits for those affected and we must ensure that everyone can travel and have proper access according to their needs. It is always a pleasure to see how happy physically challenged people are when they find they have access to coaches and can travel as anyone else to a destination of their choice.

However it does seem that smaller operators may have an impossible challenge ahead since I am told there is no Government subsidy or other form of help. It would indeed be sad to see operators closing down in the face of insurmountable odds.

What do readers think?

For reference more can read at this link : - http://www.dwp.gov.uk/publications/dwp/2005/ria/dda-2005-final.pdf

Cyclists and safety

I think I need to air the matter of safety concerning cyclists once again. We are at the time of year when we have dark mornings and evenings and ones attention is drawn to the blatant way so many cyclists ignore the basic rules of the road.

Can somebody tell me why cyclists do not need to adhere to the road signals, such as a red light or pedestrian crossings?

Why when a cycle lane is provided do cyclists still use the road?

Now at this point I must immediately say that this does not apply to all cyclists but sadly it does appear to apply to the majority.

Also, when now is the time for a seeming obsession with safety, that our government has not applied a simple safety rule for cyclists, that is to wear some form of high visibility clothing, even a yellow bib so favoured by many other forms of user.

Additionally so many cyclists do not have lights in darkness conditions and many of those who do use lights which are hardly visible or obscured.

Two areas which come to mind where this is a matter of importance are Bayswater and Holland Park Avenue in London plus of course the City of Oxford.

I harbour the belief that the reason that action is not taken by the authorities is that any laws, even those already in force are so hard to enforce.

However it is the cyclists who are risking their lives by ignoring the basic safety issues. They do not realise that drivers of vehicles, large and small, often cannot see the cyclist in their rear view mirrors due to the lights of other traffic. It is only a matter of time before something happens to really bring this issue to the forefront of debate.

The highway code and buses pulling off stops and that bus lane at Headington to Green Road

The highway code is quite specific about letting the bus pull out from stops. To quote:-

Rule 198: Buses, coaches and trams. Give priority to these vehicles when you can do so safely, especially when they signal to pull away from stops. Look out for people getting off a bus or tram and crossing the road.

I am told of an incident in Oxford last week when a coach was pulling away from the stop at St Clements inbound to Gloucester Green. The driver had indicated that he was pulling out and allowed a few cars to pass by. As he tried to pull off the stop a BSM learner car shot past, seemingly ignoring the coach at all. As luck would have it the car was eventually waiting to turn into Long Wall at the lights and the coach was along side the car.

The instructor had his window open and the coach driver asked the instructor if he had heard of rule 198.

The response from the instructor was "get a life". If the basic rules are ignored by one of the UK's leading schools what hope do we have?

I might add that from personal experience the fact that cars will do anything to get in front a bus or coach is not isolated. Pity we do not have the same rules as the continent, where in Holland for example, buses and coaches have an absolute right of way when pulling off stops.

Well for those of you who hate me getting on my soap box that's all for this week, except to say that car users are making the bus lane up to Green Road at Headington during rush hour conditions a waste of space. The cars hang over the bus lane ensuring the buses cannot get through.

News buses in London and a model with a local interest

Gavin Francis took himself off to London last Wednesday and came back with some nice pictures of two new buses on the London scene.

Gavin writes "Had a good day in London today. Had to wait 1.5hrs for 18500 to appear, but it did eventually. It was running as an extra to the full service. On board were 3 Stagecoach employees all with their cameras so on production of my staff pass it was come aboard!! 

It did not after all have registration R30SOL. Perhaps the reading of it was not appropriate. 

It does have electronic blinds which TfL does not like. 

The trim is not standard Stagecoach as the bus was built as a demonstrator. 

I finished up in the LT museum shop. They are doing a museum shop special of a green STL on route 455 to High Wycombe. (Apologies for the photo quality, it's never easy taking pictures of models Ed.)

First to be captured in his lens was the new Stagecoach "Spirit of London" which he tells me was being used for type familiarisation on route 30. He caught up with 18500 at Marble Arch and sent the pictures below.

   
Three views of 18500 by Gavin Francis

The other new buses in service are Enviro 400s on Metroline's route 24. Two views of this were sent by Gavin as seen below.

 

Gavin also says "I see RML 2665 has been re-painted from Stagecoach livery back to red."

Lewknor taxibus update

This Monday, 30th January, sees the start of the revised taxibus service to Lewknor, now serving Stokenchurch and Watlington. Aimed at the commuter the service only operates during the peak hours, Monday to Friday. The new timetable is shown below for reference and interest. Let us hope that sufficient people take advantage of this service to make it viable.

A picture from the future

Last Tuesday Gavin Francis was in High Wycombe and took this picture of Newlands Bus Station which was deserted. This predates the mover to the new bus station due to take place in July, all being well.

Gavin's comment was "Took a shot of Wycombe Bus Station at 10.00 this morning showing the wide choice of buses available to intending passengers!!"

Fire at Westbourne Park

Trevor Wilson writes "look at the BBC News site - about 5 or 6 photos." 

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/in_pictures/4637170.stm 

"and here is the story" 

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/london/4636606.stm

Report from Luton & area by Glenn Knight

Glenn Knight sent two pictures this week saying "here is a picture of Lutonians last Iveco 2219 P26 KOP sadly this be be out of MOT before May 2006 according to inside sources P26 KOP can go over 61MPH."



The Iveco mentioned above


Lutonian's M70TGM, last seen by me in Staines on a Tellings Golden Miller local service.

Ray Jackson Art

Ray Jackson wrote to me to advise me of his web site which has paintings of buses. Nice present for a Christmas or Birthday wish list !!

http://www.rayjacksonart.co.uk/index.htm


Again my thanks to all my contributors, both old and new. Keep the historical info and  older pictures coming but don't forget the modern stuff.

Malcolm Crowe - Sunday 29th January 2006

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

News of the local companies 29th January 2006

David Hillas writes "In your Oxford and Chilterns Bus Page for Monday 18th December, 2005, you mentioned in the Arriva column that Dennis Tridents 5422 and 5432 were leaving High Wycombe. I don't know where the report originated from, but I can tell you that both vehicles were operating on my local bus route 345 (High Wycombe - Great Missenden via Terriers, Great Kingshill and Prestwood) this week. No doubt they were also operating on other bus routes such as the 362 (High Wycombe - Chesham via Holmer Green and Amersham). Similar vehicle 5431 is now based at Aylesbury.

 It is good to see both Dennis Tridents working from High Wycombe and I hope they long stay there. They bring a touch of modernity to the double deck fleet there, the others dating from the late 80s, early 90s and 1996."


Gavin Francis took this picture of Arriva's 3158 in High Wycombe looking very spruce indeed.


Another Gavin Francis picture this time of Arriva's 4353 in Buckingham Palace Road, London.


Mt weekly offering of the 342 in Stokenchurch, today seeing 3365 on the 1215 departure to Wycombe with just one passenger.

Work continues on the new bus station for High Wycombe and I hope to have more details shortly.

Paul Goodwin writes to say "Not sure if anyone at Carousel has contacted you but two new Iveco (Renault) Agoraline single decks go into service on the 4 tomorrow.

They look very nice Reg  C1 WYC and C2 WYC"

No Paul, no contact from Carousel and when I passed by their two yards today there was no sign of any new buses as the pictures below show.

Who will send me the first pictures of these buses I wonder?

Today saw a revised timetable for the "Oxford espress" X90 service between Oxford and London. The main changes are a reduction in frequency from 0950 until 1810 daily from Oxford to a 20 minute frequency and the withdrawal of night services between 2300 and 0410 from Oxford - Monday through Friday. Night services are retained on Friday Night/Saturday morning and Saturday night. Sunday morning.

Correspondingly services from London see a reduction in frequency with the first service ex London from Monday to Friday of 0610 after the 0100 departure and a 20 minute frequency from 0810 to 1610 Monday thru' Friday.

As previously mentioned a number of coaches will be held over during the day in London, at Stockwell I understand, to strengthen the evening peak services from London to Oxford.

Full details can be found at the following link: http://www.oxfordbus.co.uk/cgi-bin/cms-pull.cgi?/oasis-ims/img/oxfordbus/live/20060129X90times.pdf

As mentioned above I have been remiss of late in failing to picture current workings in Oxford. I include some of the workings last week in Magdalen Street and Magdalen Bridge.


London coach nr 25 is seen leaving The Plain last Saturday when a fleeting ray of sunshine produced an unusual effect on the front end.


Coach 67 waits for the lights leaving Thornhill Park & Ride last Saturday afternoon on its way to Heathrow.


Two pictures of Park & Ride services near The Plain last Saturday.
The first shows 109 in St Clements on 400 road and the second 112 on the 300 road which is diverted via Iffley Road on Saturdays.


Another service to avoid the Abingdon Road inbound is the 16 which operates as the 16B via Iffley Road.
Here we see 404 passing The Plain last Saturday.


A selection of the new standard for Oxford Bus, the Citaro.
First we see 836 unusually working a 500 service last Friday morning.
Second 845 displays its recently applied front fleet number on a City 2 working last Friday
and then a rear shot showing the fleet numbers applied thereon.
835 is seen on a City 15 working last Saturday and 8727 is seen on a City 2 working being passed by Stagecoach's 18128 on a route 20 working.


Gavin Francis sent this picture of ex London DMS 993, JGU274K, which joined the Oxford fleet in 1979.
It is seen in Cornmarket heading towards Redbridge.

Where are they now?

Mike Bennett writes "Great to see Tim Hall's photos of the new Thamesdown Scanias.  It was him that was feeding me the news of their arrival in December and earlier this month. 

I was in Salisbury on Saturday 28th and managed a photo of N602 FJO, now with Wilts & Dorset subsiduary Damory Coaches.  It is seen reversing out of its bay in the bus station at 1400hrs on route 302 for Blandford Forum."


Mike Bennett's picture of ex OBC 602 leaving Blandford Forum last Saturday.

http://www.citysightseeingoxford.com/


CSS's new open topper eases over Magdalen Bridge last Saturday afternoon with Carol, often mentioned in these pages, at the wheel


DAF D314 works a 737 service to Stansted last Saturday.
A careful study of the destination screen will show how this and a number of other coaches still show 757 when working this service.

R H Transport

Further comments on that Scania have been received.

Matthew Forth writes "Contrary to the Scania designations of N and L series. These actually refer to the engine layout. N is what Scania use for transverse engines, and L for in line and/or longitudinal. Type of bus is an N113CRB, there is also a low floor N113CRL, but it was expensive. As you there is an L113CRL, there was also a step entry version which was launched in the UK in 1994 with what was then Rider York being the first customer, not only did the engine layout change on this L113, but it has a ZF rather than the Voith in the N-series and is audibly noticeable (which in my opinion was characteristic). Overall great to see F113OMJ going on strong, almost 17 years old!  If I remeber Black prince did take good care of her (like many of thier buses) and has been overhauled a few times."

Paul writes "....further to the comments on this weeks page, this bus is indeed an N113CRB. The 'N' refers to the position of the engine, not to low floor/step entrance (N is German, not Swedish!!). 

N is an upright engine, as in the layout of a traditional rear engined double deck such as the Olympian. L is a laid down engine, such as you would find in a traditional rear engined single deck such as the Lynx. 

Accordingly, there are L113CRL that are step entrance and low floor with the same chassis designation. The low floor London vehicles refered to are N113CRL.0

As an aside to that, F113 OMJ was one of my favourite buses to drive when I did a spell at Black Prince in the late 90s."

Again some more up to date pictures for this week for this operator.


This bus came from Scotland and remains "unique" in this fleet, 22279 is heading towards Blackbird Leys last Saturday.


I showed the "new" staff bus a few week's ago and here 40653 is heading to Horspath last Saturday.


Monday will see Brookes back at full strength and their Tridents will no longer be available for other workings.
Last Saturday saw 18054 working the 3 service.


18198 was on the U1 and is seen crossing Magdalen Bridge last Saturday. Passing it city bound is the refurbished OBC 801.


Volvo/Alexander PS 20205 is seen last Friday working the 59 to Banbury.


An ex Manchester M A N 22205 is seen on a 3 working last Saturday.


M A N 22921 looks very spruce whilst working a Kidlington service last Friday.


10 route branded Dart 33650 is seen crossing Magdalen Bridge last Saturday.


Dart 33822 started life in Oxford, went away for a while and is now back, this time branded for the5A/5B services.


The "spare" bus for the X4 is often used on other routes in the City. In fact it must have operated on every route
by now and is seen here on a through working of the 7 from Barton to Kidlington last Saturday.


Coach 50103 is seen London bound last Saturday when loading were very heavy due to problems on the trains from Oxford to London.

Courtesy megabus.com I can bring you the latest fleet allocations as at last Friday, 28th January 2006

Fleet Vehicle Vehicle Type Seats Home depot
No. Reg.    
13602 WLT416 Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 82 Aberdeen
13638 F265LSA Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 82 Aberdeen
13653 J925FPS Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 82 Aberdeen
50126 SV54 ELC Neoplan Skyliner 91 Aberdeen
50127 SV54 ELH Neoplan Skyliner 91 Aberdeen
50128 SV54ELJ Neoplan Skyliner 91 Aberdeen
50129 SV54 ELO Neoplan Skyliner 91 Aberdeen
50136 LX05BWL Neoplan Skyliner 91 Aberdeen
50137 LX05BWM Neoplan Skyliner 91 Aberdeen
50139 CN05FVU Neoplan Skyliner 91 Aberdeen
50147 MX05BWP Neoplan Skyliner 91 Aberdeen
50141 KX05HVE Neoplan Skyliner 91 Aberdeen
50142 KX05HVF Neoplan Skyliner 91 Aberdeen
13645 H51SKG Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 86 Cheltenham
13648 J515WAX Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 86 Cheltenham
52446 R456FCE B10 M Coach 49 Chesterfield
13611 OSK784 Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 86 Chesterfield
13609 J701HMY Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 86 Chesterfield
13617 H445EGU Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 86 Chesterfield
13625 H511FRP Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 86 Chesterfield
50145 YN05 WEC Neoplan Skyliner 91 Chesterfield
50146 YN05 WEF Neoplan Skyliner 91 Chesterfield
50150 YN05 WEK Neoplan Skyliner 91 Chesterfield
13604 331HWD Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 86 Cwmbran
13619 511OHU Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 86 Cwmbran
13627 HIL8410 Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 86 Cwmbran
50133 CN05APV Neoplan Skyliner 91 Cwmbran
50134 CN05APX Neoplan Skyliner 91 Cwmbran
50135 CN05APY Neoplan Skyliner 91 Cwmbran
50140 CN05FVV Neoplan Skyliner 91 Cwmbran
50143 CN05FVW Neoplan Skyliner 91 Cwmbran
50144 CN05FVX Neoplan Skyliner 91 Cwmbran
50042 T42BBW MAN 24.350/Jonckheere (TUBE) 68 Inverness
50048 T48BBW MAN 24.350/Jonckheere (TUBE) 68 Inverness
50053 T53BBW MAN 24.350/Jonckheere (TUBE) 68 Inverness
50055 T617DWL MAN 24.350/Jonckheere (TUBE) 68 Inverness
52622 S902CCD B10 M Coach 49 Rugby
52618 S458BCE B10 M Coach 49 Rugby
52621 S901CCD B10 M Coach 49 Rugby
52619 S459BCE B10 M Coach 49 Rugby
52617 S547BCE B10 M Coach 49 Leyton
52623 S903CCD B10 M Coach 49 Leyton
13606 J702HMY Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 86 Leyton
13607 J703HMY Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 86 Leyton
13608 J734HMY Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 86 Leyton
13623 H494LNA Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 86 Preston
13633 G127WGX Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 86 Preston
13636 G128WGX Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 86 Preston
50138 LX05BWN Neoplan Skyliner 91 Preston
50149 MX05BWO Neoplan Skyliner 91 Preston
13616 G189YRJ Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 86 Manchester
50148 MX05BWN Neoplan Skyliner 91 Manchester
13626 H41GBD Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 86 Nuneaton
13618 H522FRP Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 82 Glasgow
13624 H987RKG Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 82 Perth
50040 T614DWL MAN 24.350/Jonckheere (TUBE) 68 Perth
50054 T54BBW MAN 24.350/Jonckheere (TUBE) 68 Perth
50130 SV54 ELU Neoplan Skyliner 91 Perth
50131 SV54 ELW Neoplan Skyliner 91 Perth
50132 SV54 ELX Neoplan Skyliner 91 Perth
13620 H723KDY Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 86 Portsmouth
13621 H724KDY Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 86 Portsmouth
13601 BIW4977 Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 86 Swindon
13630 H493LNA Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 86 Walkergate
50046 T46BBW MAN 24.350/Jonckheere (TUBE) 68 Walkergate
50047 T47BBW MAN 24.350/Jonckheere (TUBE) 68 Walkergate
50058 T58BBW MAN 24.350/Jonckheere (TUBE) 68 Walkergate
13613 J939MHC Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 86 Winchester
13631 H492LNA Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 86 Winchester
13622 H725KDY Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 86 Winchester
13612 J938MHC Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 86 Worthing
13635 H763KDY Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 86 Worthing
         
Non Fleet Vehicles    
         
52029 LSK545 B10 M Coach 51 Perth
52195 LJY145 B10 M Coach 46 Perth
13615 J167UNH Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 82 Perth
13654 J688TNF Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 86 Manchester
13649 H607LNA Leyland Olympian/Alexander (HK) 82 Perth  
Thames Travel, Wallingford

Thanks to Fred Spresser I have the latest fleet list effective 1st February. Note that the Mercedes 305 is leaving the fleet and I caught up with the bus when it was operating the 103 last Friday.

Fleet List as at  01-02-2006. 

   Reg. No.            Type                              Body and Seats                                    Notes

M501VJO           Dennis Dart                         Marshall B36D                                   Ex  City of Oxford 501

WWL208X            Leyland Olympian                E. C. W. H47/28D                                                  208

R846 JGD           Mercedes O814D                 Plaxton Beaver  B31F

R847 JGD                                     .                             B27F

R848 JGD                                                                   B31F

BD02HDV                      411CDI                  Evo-Bus B13F

BX02CMF                                                            

X  49VVY          Optare Solo                           Optare B27F

X383VVY                                                                

KX53SGV                                                             B26F

KX53SGY                                                               

KX53SGZ                                                                                            

Y972GPN         Dennis Dart                            Plaxton MPD B29F

Y973GPN                                                                            

KP51UFB                                                                            

KP51UFC                                                                            

KP51UFG                                                                            

KP51UFH                                                                           

KP51UFK                                                                Pointer B36F

KP51UFL                                                                            

KP51SXU                                                                MPD B29F               Ex Chiltern Queens, Woodcote.

KU52RXF                                                                              

KU52RXG                                                                             

KU52RXR                                                                            

KU52RXS                                                                           

OU04FMV                                                                                              See Note (A)

AE55VGO                                                         M.C.V. B40F

V  67SVY                Volvo B10BLE                      Alexander DP44F                     Ex Longstaff,

Y313KDP                         B6LE                           East Lancs B36F                   Ex Chiltern Queens, Woodcote.

Y877KDP                                                                          B31F                                                          

OU54PGZ              Scania N94                            ELC O-Dekka CH47/33F

AE05EUX              M.A.N. 14.220                       M.C.V. B40F

AE05EUZ                                                                         

Notes     (a)           Delivered with Registration Number SN04EFW

                                Re-registered due to demise of Trans-Bus International

     
The MB 305 on 103 at Horspath, with the new decker 154 on 105,
151 on the 101 and 846 on the 103 all at Magdalen Bridge.

Woottens

     
Michael Wootten sent a selection of current photos.

PHOTO CORNER
If you have a digital camera and wish to submit photos for this page please send them to the me at 
malcolmhc@aol.com


Frazer Peddle writes "I saw this Leyland Tiger on ebay, I was just wondering if this one was an ex-Green Line serving the Berkshire area & Heathrow?"


Gavin Francis caught this coach from Charlbury Travel at Oxford Station on rail replacement work for Frazer Eagle.


Gavin Francis snapped this coach from Fosters at High Wycombe Station on rail replacement work.


Another Gavin Francis picture of Nash's also at Oxford Station on rail replacement work for Frazer Eagle.

HISTORY IN PICTURES AND WORDS
If you have any pcitures or historical memories and wish to submit them for this page please send them to the me at 
malcolmhc@aol.com

You like the history side of things.

Your letters tell me how much so many of you like the history corner and the older, even if fairly recent pictures.

This week's contributions come from a number of sources and once again pictures from Derek Doling feature prominently.


The first picture is from Martin Isles and shows a South Midland coach EMO551C, a 1965 Bedford SB13 with Harrington Crusader coachwork.


A W R Legg picture of EJB211 when with Elms Coaches in the late 50s.

Some more pictures from Derek appear below.

Andrew Dyer writes with some interesting notes.

Andrew writes "I've just looked at this week's news page and had a fit of nostalgia at John's picture of 736. I used to go to school on service 95 and as you can see from the destination display in the pic, 736 was a regular performer on the route after it was converted to mainly one man operation in the late 60's." 

High Wycombe Bus Stations  - a letter from Ed Maun, 

Further to my notes on High Wycombe bus stations in issue 162, I have been looking at more old press cuttings and have been reminded that in the mid 1980s there were plans to move from Newlands bus station and depot to allow it to be redeveloped as shops.    The initial plan was to relocate the bus station behind the High Street I assume on the land now occupied by the Swan Theatre and car park.    Alder Valley refused this site as with the impending 1985 Transport Act and the possible onset of competition they did not wish to move away from the main shopping area.   By December 1985 Alder Valley were proposing to use the then Newland Island car park for the bus station with a bus depot in Brook Street.    I believe the proposed Brook Street site was a disused Council depot which now has College student accommodation built on it.    Is the original Carousel Buses depot also part of this site?     By February 1986 part of the Bridge Street car park was the preferred choice for a bus station which is where it will be later this year; it has only taken 20 years to realise these plans!

This week's offering from Derek Doling of pictures by W R Legg.

South Midland

   
Three shots of SM coaches the first being one acquired from United Counties,
the second of a Thames Valley Windover bodied Bristol transferred to SM and finally an ex Newbury & District AEC in London VCS.

A selection of TV Bristol Ks mainly at Reading (I think?)

       
The details of each picture are in its title.

Single deck coach rebodies

 
The details of each picture are in its title.

Breakdown catered for.


The details of picture are in its title.

Pictures from John Bristow


The forward-entrance L was taken at North Dean on 13/4/68 by John Bristow.


LH leaving HW bus station on 17/9/75 - photo by John Bristow.

Martin Isles comments on the RT picture at Reading last week "Enjoying your weekly offerings as usual.

Read your lamenting the RT at Reading picture was not a wider shot, so thought you might like to use this one.

Feel free to use any of the Showbus Gallery pics if they add to your historic pieces.  The Hired Help pics are probably most relevant to the RT pics and show Royal Blue MWs, Lesney RT, Portsmouth, Maidstone & Southend buses as well as TWA Atlanteans.  I have put them on line, but they are not linked into the site yet.

http://www.showbus.com/gallery/homeco/tvahh.htm

Have recently been scanning loads more TV/AV pics and will add them in - eventually!"


The RTs at Reading mentioned by Martin Isles.

Coming events

Running Day in Aldershot with details from Andrew Dyer.

I wonder if you could put a piece in your "forthcoming events" section about all the excitement that will be in Aldershot (not often you see the words "excitement" and "Aldershot" in the same sentence!!) over the weekend of 3 & 4 June this year. 

Stagecoach is organising an event jointly with the Aldershot & District Bus Interest Group to celebrate 100 years since the first bus service operated from Aldershot to Farnborough in June 1906. There will be a running day and on Sunday 4 June we will be holding an Open Day at our depot in Halimote Road, Aldershot. As with the Portsmouth event last year, we hope to attract local families as well as enthusiasts and all proceeds raised will go to local charities. 

As Aldershot has such a strong history of Dennis operation, we are hoping to get as many different types of Dennis bus on site as we can. Do you have a contact at the Oxford Bus Museum who might be persuaded to bring a KFC Loline 2? Sadly, I don't think any of the Loline 1's or 3's that were on loan from A&D to COMS in 1969/70 have survived to enable them to make an appearance, although there will certainly be sister vehicles in the SOU xxx and AAA xxxC batches there.

Running Days as advised by Peter Cartwright, Running Day Organiser  Amersham & District Motorbus Society 

At last I'm able to officially notify everyone of the Running Days for 2006.

Sunday 14 May 2006 is the date for the second Slough/Windsor Running Day based on Slough Bus Station. Since last year a huge new Tesco store has been built adjacent and is now fully operational. Due to traffic delays experienced last year in Windsor an extra 5 minutes each way is being added to running times between Slough and Windsor.

There is no St George's Day parade to hold us up this year and the Queen's official birthday is 2 weeks plus later when her 80th birthday is marked. I know of no Royal Wedding planned for Windsor this year and, hopefully, timekeeping will be better on the Windsor routes.

An enhancement to the Burnham Beeches service is envisaged with the opposite way round the loop. There is also the chance to have double deck workings but terminating on the eastern fringe of the Beeches.

Another new route for this year will be a service through Windsor Great Park. Crown Estates are happy with this and I have a meeting arranged  with them on Tuesday 10 January. White Bus Services currently operate a restricted service here but not on Sundays & on only certain days of the week. Operation is likely to be by non-LT single-deck vehicles. A large number of vehicles is required including at least 16 double-deckers.

Some 40 years earlier on 15 May 1966 RMLs were allocated to Windsor Garage to work several routes in the area. RMC coaches had already been there for some time.

WR Garage operated many other types of vehicle including RT,RF,RC,RCL,RB,RS,GS,SMA,SNB,STL, T and of course some of these only operated in the London Country period. Additionally in the summer months Central area red vehicles were commonplace as green vehicles were reassigned to Green Line relief duties so any red-liveried vehicle would be welcome. At least 30 vehicles (including 5 non-LT/LCBS vehicles will be needed to maintain the schedules. 

As 1966 is the 40th anniversary of route 724 it is hoped to have a feeder to/from the Northern areas and to run the route from Slough through Windsor, Old Windsor, Runnymede to Staines. Via Runnymede, by the river Thames was the original routeing when it was extended from Staines to Windsor Castle. It did not serve Windsor Garage nor will it in 2006. The coach link to Staines will therefore be 724 this year in place of 718.

Anyone offering to operate a 725 from at least Kingston will be welcomed. Please let me know.

At the moment there is not an area for display vehicles  but every effort will be made to find one. Can I please ask anyone who came last year and was allocated blinds and who will/cannot come this year, to contact me urgently so I can collect them for re-issue to others. These are expensive and will be needed on the day.

Sunday 25 June 2006

This date in mid-Summer is for the first Hemel Hempstead Running Day to be based on the Bus Station. Arriva the Shires and Essex have given permission for us to use the bus station that day but like Slough this is an operational bus station and we will not interfere with their operations which are anyway much reduced on Sundays.

This is the normal date for North Weald which will not take place this year and the NLTS have no plans for a replacement event that day.

Discussions have also taken place with Dacorum Borough Council, Herts County Council and the police who have all been most helpful. I have also spoken to the Market Superintendent and am able to book and pay for stall space on the day. For those who don't know Hemel, the covered market is situated behind the bus station - an excellent location.

The market will have a hot food stall that day and another stallholder sells confectionery, soft drinks, ice cream etc. Ample toilet facilities are at the bus station.

Peter Gomm and I visited Hemel on Fri 6 January and, with advice from the police, have identified an area nearby for display vehicles in Dacorum Way and vehicles on long breaks can park in Queensway (formerly Bury Road) between Leighton Buzzard Road and Marlow's, the railway station on one unused bay on Sundays and the bus station itself can be used for shorter breaks without disturbing its smooth operation. Health & Safety issues have to be borne in mind. A requirement of at least 10 double decks and 11 single decks are needed. This excludes any duplication which will be needed.

A number of rural and inter-urban routes have been chosen for operation - 302, 307 ,312.316. 317.317a,318,319 ,320,330, 337 ,347,706,708, 724. The 724 is for a feeder service to/from Watford from the North and then a 708 to/from Hemel. At the moment I have nothing from the South - any suggestions/offers?  (THOSE IN BOLD HAVE TO BE SINGLE-DECK OPERATED). 

Certain places such as Berkhamsted Station provide good interchanges with rtes 317/a and 312 connecting there and also in central Watford with the 302 and 347 connecting.

The biggest interchange of all, of course, is the bus station.

Again in Hemel a wide range of vehicles have been operated e.g. GS,RF, T, RB,RT,RMC, RML,SNB,SNC plus several others. Like Windsor, Central Area used to loan their vehicles for weekend and bank holiday duplication. 

If anyone has blinds for any or part of these areas please let me know urgently.

Please respond as quickly as you can as I want to finalise timetables/duties etc asap.

I am paying a visit to Hemel this morning to see what it's like between 11.00 and 12.00

Sunday 1 October 2006 - the 18th Running Day at Amersham.

As route 724 is 40 years old this year, apart from the feeders, I want to schedule a service between Watford and High Wycombe via Amersham - the original route south of Watford. This will be 29 years to the day since MA Garage took over duties from HE - High Wycombe Garage which closed the previous day, 30 September 1977.

This year should see the brand new bus station at High Wycombe open by this date and this would be the ideal place to terminate. More on this Running Day in due course.

It is hoped to celebrate 40 years since RMLs took over route 363 Totteridge - Holtspur in February 1966. Weather permitting it is hoped to have RML/RMLs running over the route on Sunday 19 February. Likewise a month later to run over the full length of Route 347 Hemel - Uxbridge which received RMLs on 20 March 1966. Anyone else interested in joining us?

Please feel free to contact me by phone 01494 437750 or by e-mail - Peter_Cartwright@wycombe.gov.uk - or post at 54 Guinions Road, HIGH WYCOMBE, HP13 7NX. 

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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

Links

Bus Services in Buckinghamshire

Bus services in Oxfordshire

Where are the Chilterns?

Visit this informative site through the link below.

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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