As detailed in Picture Of The Month, 7656 has joined the collection and will be used for parts and as a store shed/workshop. A new page will be added for her on the site in time, but meanwhile, here are some more exclusive pictures of her.
Also, work continues on 7980 and getting 1178 ready to move into undercover storage. As stated last month, 7980 is having an Invicta Radio advert added as well as giving her existing livery a freshen up too. Hopefully all of our EK vehicles will be ready for the big East Kent 100 in 2016!
Well just as you make plans, something comes along and blows them out of the water! From a bus owners perspective, June isn't the best month to move house - especially when the dates you're given to sign the paperwork and move in clash with the Preston Steam Rally, but this is what has happened to us. As you can imagine, everything is now on hold from MOT's to attending shows (anything that costs money basically!) until we get moved and settled in. Bit of a pain but can't be helped I'm afraid. Despite this, work hasn't stopped on the buses. When ever I've had a spare few hours Paul and myself have been working on something. Latterly 3131 and 7980. 3131 was prepared for a buyer who then pulled out at the 11th hour. 7980, Bernard's one of a kind Willowbrook bodied VR has been having her external paintwork sanded down pending a tidy up and panel work. She will also be sporting a 'unibus' advert for a much missed local company too - just to add that certain something to her.
Work has stopped on 7980 due to all of our spares being placed on board her at Sandwich at detailed in October's Picture Of The Month. So far, all the lower deck seating has been rubbed down and primed and some of the frames have received the maroon top coat as seen in the gallery below. Work will commence on clearing out the inside and moving this to our secure store so we can resume with the lower deck.
Work has started on stripping out 7980's lower deck ready for the seat frames to be repainted and the floor paint to be put down. Andy removed them all bar one stubborn back on the offside which wouldn't budge! As time permits we will start sanding down the frames soon. Excuse the poor quality pictures but they were taken in pitch blackness as 7980 is parked between other buses, including sister bus RVB977S the Pride Of Thanet and 6801FN, an East Kent Park Royal bodied Regent.
Andy and myself had very busy Sunday yesterday when we took 3131 for a run to deliver some National parts to the yard. I then brought back 7980 whilst Andy got to grips with 3131. 7980 is now living undercover with 3131 and work will begin on her rather tired bodywork to spruce her up and get her ready for an MOT. After she was squeezed inside the shed, we scrubbed the grime off of 3131's roof ready for next weekend's trip to Hastings. The roof is now white as opposed to the snotty gray it was before!
A big thanks to friend of the collection Nigel Carroll who I had the pleasure to meet in Canterbury. He emailed me some pictures from his collection of 5137, 5807 and 7980 in their service days. Over the next month, some will be used on the site so keep checking to see the updates.
On Saturday 31st March a show is being held at the Kent County Showground at Detling near Maidstone to celebrate 60 years of the M&D and East Kent Bus Club. We're hoping to attend with 7980 as we missed out the M&D 100 one last which was organised by the same people. Last year whilst taking some fellow yacht club members out for a drink in Ramsgate, the hinges on the rear offside engine door failed due to rusty hinges. This is still to be fixed as 7980 has been off the road over the winter period. Although we do have spare panels, they're the later type with the squarer tail light units so for ease it will be just as easy to repair the one currently on the bus.
Last Sunday (11th September) we was planning to go to the excellent New Romney Bus Rally, however, the night before we did a little job which involved taking Bernard and a group of friends from yacht club in Dover into Ramsgate. I was then going to pick them up about 2130hrs. A school reunion for me in Ramsgate provided a port of call while waiting for them to finish at the yacht club. After a chat to Bernard, a new collection time of 2230hrs was arranged. The time everyone was on we had left at 2245hrs and then got held up en route when the hinges broke on the off side engine door. (A emergency repair with masking tape fixed it). We finally arrived back at the yard at 0100hrs and was home about 0135. Not really fancying getting up at 0700 to get ready for the rally, we decided to knock this year on the head. Although sorry not to do this rally, there's no point driving tired and putting everyone else on the road in danger.
WKO137S runs out of tax this month so she will be SORN and replaced in the running fleet by the our ex Stagecoach Mercedes Benz minibus. More on this vehicle later.
This coming Sunday is of course the excellent Herne Bay Bus Rally which is held in William Street Car Park in the town. Originally I hoped to take a few of our buses along but an expensive MOT on my car and buying 7041 has put pay to this. We will be there in (probably!) 5137 which would be her first visit to this event.
On September 11th there is the New Romney Bus Rally which is held in the car park of the light railway station. Classic buses, steam trains and fish and chips at Dungeness - what could be better? Again I will be taking one of our buses along - maybe 7980 or 7681.
The Thanet Roadrun will also hopefully be in September too at some point where we will be celebrating 7681's 30th birthday and her 10th year in preservation. If you'd like more information on any of these events please contact me via the site.
Well Saturday night and Sunday we were at this popular event which is held in Quex Park, Birchington. The weather was great as was the company - thanks Paul and Carol! We were going to take 5137 but as this was a Thanet event we took 7980 instead as she is still in the guise of a Thanet car. Again we set up the 'tent within a bus' which didn't work as well on the Willowbrook as it does on the ECW buses due to the wheel arches being slightly closer together. Sunday evening I cooked a lovely curry on our camping stoves in 7980's luggage rack. A full report will follow on the site soon.
Click here for the archive news pages dating back to 2008.
Owner of 5807, 5809, 5137, 7656, 7681, 7041 & 40301
All pictures and information contained within this website are the copyright of J Bamford, R Addison, P Tripptree, B Sealy & R Harrison 2008-2019. Any images or information supplied by individuals will be credited to that individual and will be copyright of that person/persons/website.
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