This pictures from our trip to the South East Bus Festival are now on line and can be seen HERE. This was a really fantastic day out and if you couldn't make it do try to visit next year. You won't be disappointed.
Today we attended the excellent Herne Bay Bus Rally in the town's William Street car park. There was a great selection of vehicles and the turn out was really good - including the weather too! We took along 3131 which filled in on a few of the runs around the town and then up to Tankerton. She proved very popular and most runs she was pretty full up. Nick Moore was also there in 1145 on static display, however, he did do a photographic run to the seafront so some pictures of 1145 and the famous clocktower could be taken.
Whilst waiting for the coach to be serviced Claire and me popped into Canterbury to have a look around. We visited the Westgate Towers Museum which allowed these unusual shots of Stagecoach East Kent Alexander bodied Tridents. The Towers has to be one of the wonders of the bus world. If watching a double decker squeeze through looks tight, you should see it from the driving cab. Pull the offside mirror in and get as tight to the wall as you dare! I've done this many time when on the Compass service without any issues until one day I went to pull the mirror in .... and it came off in my hand! Yes, that's right, nobody at Canterbury Bus Station believed me thinking I'd hit the Towers too hard and knocked it off!
As you would of have seen from some of the pictures, our Titan (known as Nuw) is in need of a real tidy up outside. Inside she's ok but the exterior bodywork is rather shabby. After a lot of thought, Bernard and myself came up with putting her into a heritage livery. As stated on her page, Nuw ran with Stagecoach United Counties but Titan's like her were found all over the Stagecoach network. Yes, we could restore her back to the Stagecoach stripes which would be different now days and would allow for her to appear as a United Counties, East Kent, Southcoast or Devon vehicle. After quite a bit of thought we wondered what would've happened if Stagecoach Devon had run her in a heritage livery. Both of us being fans of Devon General and me having encountered a similar liveried Titan in Canterbury some time ago kind of swung the balance. Eventually we hope to present Nuw in a Stagecoach Devon General livery. The Titan (T638 of the same batch as Nuw) which inspired us can be seen below. At the time it was running for Poynters Coaches of Wye having come from MTL. It's seen here providing service to the local Beer Festival 2 years ago.
All the years that I have been working in the industry and involved with bus preservation it never fails to amaze me when perfectly good buses go for scrap. This Wednesday (22/09/10) I encountered former Roberts Coaches Leyland Titan T953 (HIG5682) heading to the local scrap yard. After work I went over to the yard. There she sat, engine ticking over, hazard lights flashing, interior lights on as they started smashing the windows prior to breaking her up. What was even more mad was that this was no MOT faliure or time expired bus but one with a current class 6 MOT that was still capable of going out in service and doing a days work. Fortunately I managed to salvage a few seats that will fit DMS550 and after a phone call to London bus guru Stuart Boxall, the engine and gearbox which he could use as spares. The people at the yard were very helpful even suggesting we save the tyres too. I know we can't save everything but to me this did seem total madness!
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Owner of 5807, 5809, 5137, 7656, 7681, 7041 & 40301
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