I AM CHRISTOPHER LEACH THE ARTIST. I started this blog so that I can share with everyone my vast collection of transport photographs showing a personal and nostalgic view of the industry with images that span some 45 years taking in the U.K and some of Europe. I have no darkroom and so rather than being the perfectionist after tidying them up I upload the images warts and all, and even those that won't scan squarely or are scratched. In a way it adds age and character. You are all free to download these for your personal use but please remember I still own them and you are not just free to use them without prior permission for any knd of publishing. Click on images to enlarge them and if you want to see more leave your comments or visit my website for the mother-site with galleries including those Buses & Girls: PICTUREWORLD

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Volvo Ailsa V1 at Potters Bar Garage

Not my best photo but when we come across something interesting we have to have a go even if the sun is in the wrong direction. Potters Bar garage greatly supplemented it's rather ordinary fleet of MCW Metrobuses with a fleet of mostly second-hand Volvo Ailsas and also ran Alexander bodied V1 A101SUU one of three slightly ugly and unsuccessful trial buses.

Monday, 25 August 2014

Blackpool and another sunshine filled Bank Holiday

There's something about Blackpool in the rain and I'm trying to find the word to describe it. Words and phrases like Romantic, Very British, don't quite hit the mark but how about 'Wet'? Well wet it might be but I for one feel a little nostalgic and I'm sure many of you would like to journey back there in Jojo's time-machine to ride on Routemasters, Atlanteans, Leyland PD3's, Nationa2's and AEC Swifts in the rain rather than go there today where there seems to be little of interest to photograph even in the sunshine. Blackpool like Blackburn was a late purchaser of the Atlantean AN68 which some Municipals still preferred to Leyland's more advanced Olympian. Well if that's not enough to tempt you, how about Fish and Chips for just a Pound and probably a warm pint in a smokey bar for about the same price to wash it down?

Sunday, 24 August 2014

Bristol KSW 8089 in Weston super Mare

I haven't been able to go on many bus trips to events this Summer but the odd really good one makes up for some of them that have been predictable. I'm not a big preserved railway nut and nor do I like rows of static buses in a field somewhere for the people who collect perfect but not very authentic photos the way some collect numbers. I like lots of rides too and an interesting lively place and Weston super Mare was just the ticket especially in the lovely weather. Not many would cite Bristol Omnibus as their favourite BTC company but it is with preservationists and1952 Bristol KSW L8089 is an excellent example of the breed.

Friday, 22 August 2014

Wellies at the ready in Wolverhampton for V-Fest

Last weekend brought a lot of young people into Wolverhampton for this years V-Festival at Weston Park. Indeed it must be Wolverhampton I've just spotted a bus Wright bodied Volvo BX61 LJJ but National Express don't display the fleet numbers very clearly on the front which is a pity as the current registration system doesn't accommodate  a matching number sequence. But this is nothing new and even though most BET companies tied in to their registrations the BTC 'Tilling Group' left it till the mid-Sixties to help us teenage spotters or never did it at all like Bristol Omnibus.

Thursday, 21 August 2014

Alder Valley Leyland National LPF 602P

Eventually the dull NBC relaxed it's strict livery options and encouraged it's companies to show a bit of individual style in their coach and express fleet by adding their own mark with an assortment of colour variations in what became known as the venetian blind effect. Though not common this was also applied to a few Leyland Nationals such as this Alder Valley example in London. Indeed the red and black added to the NBC white was quite bold but some operators even managed to rid themselves of the NBC logos choosing a much more elegant or historic typeface. All this though was early preparation for the big Privatisation sell-off at the end of the Eighties and as the NBC became a bit more adventurous I think some of us started to feel resentment that it was being sold off to parties who often just wanted to make a quick buck and tear it apart.

Monday, 18 August 2014

MRJ 100W: Yelloway meets cruel Asset Strippers

It was a sad day when the much loved Yelloways of Rochdale sold out to a coach dealer whose recent bus operations were called SUT, short for Sheffield United Tours a once proud name name it had also acquired. But like many have a go merchants which came and went following deregulation this dealer turned bus operator was more interested in seeing how thin it could spread the jam hence out went the new and cherished and in came the used and tatty. Deregulation was meant to open the express coach market up too, but  the various new and long established ventures failed so more worryingly till Meggabus arrived we we left with just one long distance operator in England and Wales and one in Scotland. Today National Express is efficient enough, but if one lives outside the main hub you often have to travel when you can get a seat and not when you want to. Bring back Yelloways, Premier Travel and the others I say!

Saturday, 16 August 2014

Amsterdam Reflexions

After a sailing delay a weekend trip to Amsterdam turned out to be just a Sunday Morning in the city taking pics whilst the rest went on a canal trip. That might have explained the view over the top of a car of a French Mercedes coach on tour. It was about 1982 and this Club Alliances coach must have been touring the low countries and into Scandinavia as I also photographed it in Copenhagen.