About The Collection.
I wanted to work in the bus industry from about the age of 4 and I started driving buses in 1997 at a company in London. I thought about buying one of their buses when they came up for sale but eventually moved back to Kent and joined Stagecoach East Kent as a driver in 2000. As I said on the Home Page it was here I became reacquaited with SKL681X which had been one of my old school buses. I spent many happy hours driving this old girls in service around Thanet and out to Canterbury so when it was announced she would be withdrawn and sold I approached the company - who were really helpfully - and put a bid in for her. Thus SKL681X became bus number one as she joined my ownership in 2001 and I was only the second named owner on the log book!
Several buses passed through my life over the next few years. You can read about them HERE. Most of them I've really regretted selling. One of these was MLK550L an ex London DMS class Daimler Fleetline which I eventually sold on to make way for MFN41R. I sold DMS550 on to Paul who has become a really good friend and is a great help when it comes to looking after the collection.
SKL681X was joined by PKE807M, MFN41R, N301XRP, WKO137S and finally in 2017 PKE809M (which is definately the last one!). Although I've never travelled on many Maidstone & District buses, my years on the Isle of Wight taught me to appreciate a green bus plus my partner Rosiy is from Medway so she quite likes our M & D buses - especially WKO137S.
I don't aim to have all of the buses in my ownership pristine. Anyone who works in the industry or travels regularly by bus will know that they are only truly like that until the first driver gets in it and picks up the first passengers. Also with so many overgrown hedges and low branches in rural Kent a shiny new paint job soon gets scratched. Several of my buses were used as exhibition units when their service career ended and although it's tempting to rip out the conversion and fill it up with seats, they would become just another Bristol VR on display. With the need for comfortable accommodation during some of the two or three day shows we attend, it seemed a logical step to turn the large empty space in MFN41R into living space for our family. PKE807M is also an ex exhibition unit and is fitted with an awning and a minibar. This will become an exhibition unit for the group I helped found in 2011, Southern Counties Omnibus Collection. Sitting under that awning with a barbeque and a beer in the summer is certainly an enjoyable experience.
I started this website in 2008 as a way to show people what goes on behind the scenes in bus preservation. Sometimes it can be all too easy for people to say "you should do this with the buses" or "paint it like that" without understanding the hard work involved. It's a full time job alone looking after the collection and in addition to this I do work a 50hr week too - still in the bus and coach industry. To me the buses aren't just vehicles, they're members of the family and some of them have gained nicknames as a result which are detailed on their individual pages.
If you see us at a show, come over and say hello. I always love to hear from people, especially if you worked or travelled on any of my buses during their service lives. As long as we're not too busy we'll gladly show you around.
If you'd like to contact me, please email me at: