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

Saturday 30 June 2018

Time Traveler: Volvo-Wright B7 in 1968!

Here is another one of those Jowitt style buses and girls I am also known for, but unfortunately without me being aware of it my camera setting slipped out and so this Wolverhampton study has an early glossy Sixties feel about it which I rather like in a stange way.

Thursday 28 June 2018

Clydeside Tiger in Glasgow

As in England the Scottish Bus Group was broken up into smaller companies so that they could be more easily be sold off. The excuse being that it would help open the market up to competition but sadly the strongest not only survived and prospered they now have such a strong foothold they just don't care too much about giving a proper service any more. In the days of the BET Group the good urban areas used to help subsidide the country routes but now they make as much as the can in the big cities and make the local authorities pay for the country routes if they want them. Clydeside which was part of Western Scottish looked scruffy by comparison including this demoted Plaxton bodied Leyland Tiger which had gained the registration off a London Routemaster which came up here.

Tuesday 26 June 2018

LT Trial Buses: MCW Metrobus Mark2 C442 UUV

As London Buses stopped taking new Titans and Metrobus Mk1 buses into stock it tried four new types for evaluation. Most tended to stand out but only a trained eye might recognise these later Mark2 Metrobuses with the revised frontal treatment. Generally at least four of the types could regularly be seen at Trafalgar Square but I can't remember seeing a volvo here.

Sunday 24 June 2018

Chilton Queen's AEC Reliance TJO 55K

Chilton Queens base at Didcot was on the edge of City of Oxford's territory and it is from there that this interesting independent with a liking for AEC;s purchased this Marshall bodied Reliance. When the NBC told it's member companies that they had to buy just Nationals it really hurt bodybuilders like this and Willowbrook too who had relied on decent sized orders from within the BET Group. Oxford had been a part of that too and these might have been the last ones but it managed to get away without buying the dreaded National by having mostly Bristol VR deckers and turning to lightweight Fords for country services which were much more suited to their small ill-equipped garages. As for heavyweight coaches instead of AEC's Oxford bought Leyland Leopards as they became the NBC norm.

Friday 22 June 2018

Deeble Van-Hool A158 XRL

Well-wishers gather at Plymouth Bretonside to see off friends and relatives travelling on Deeble's Darley Ford Coaches Van-Hool Alizee to hopefully somewhere more sunny on a charter. Sadly taking a photo like this is quite rare these days as even if some petty offical doesn't tell you to stop it the people are penned in behind barriers and coaches stand in neat rows which never change. Also of course unique to Plymouth this spacious bus and coach station with it's covered area situated beneath the roadway above has gone and the city would never quite be the same to me in future as in former days it had a certain magic.

Thursday 21 June 2018

Midland Red West WOC730T in Ludlow

Although Midland Red was told by the NBC that it had to have Leyland Nationals it managed to persude them to let it have dual-purpose Leyland Leopards as well as it had many long routes. A good example was the 192 from Ludlow to Birmingham in Midland Red West days in attractive Midland Express  lovery.

Tuesday 19 June 2018

Lichfield: Very Nice But No Buses On a Sunday

A few years ago if someone had tried to tell me that we would lose all our Sunday Buses in Staffordshire I would have thought them a fool but it has pretty well happened. There were hopes that the important 825 which links Lichfield, Rugeley and Stafford to Stafford Hospital might be saved but with Cannock closed that day it was hoped Arriva Tamworth could easily help out. But in true Arriva style it couldn't be bothered to do it either but that might change and if it does we might  start to get thse Mercedes buses from there coming into the county town. Bus passengers are certainly made to feel they are second class citizens as not only can't people and places be visited all of the big shops are open and paying their business rates but no good to anyone without transport. And to think transport runs normally in Switzerland even on Christmas Day.

Black Prince B-Series National ODM 679V

When you think about how many Leyland Nationals were built thankfully they didn't have a massive effect on the second hand market. But of course there were more than enough but the B-Series like this example with Black Prince of Leeds were not quite so numerous, one of a large fleet delivered to Crosville.

Sunday 17 June 2018

TBC 163: Leicester City Transport Trainer

Despite being a much more reliable and dependable bus this sturdy East-Lancs bodied Leyland PD3 was time-expired and had been withdrawn by Leicester City Transport but had been retained as a driver training bus.

Blackburn GUY CBV 433: Two Faces of Modernism

Blackpool with it's tacky bling might still have it's tower which can be seen from miles away but even humble Morecambe has it's architectural treasure the magnificent Art-Deco Midland Hotel. Having just passed it on the recent Ribble Enthusiasts Running Day was this Blackburn Guy with Crossley bodywork which had been restored to original condition. When built in 1949 this Manchester  streamlined styling was considered state of the art in some town halls especially after the austere wartime utility buses but it looked rather ugly on this Arab111 especially as it's over decorative lining-out belonged in the past on the old tramcars it replaced.

Thursday 14 June 2018

You Cars Burger Off!

I think this gentleman nearing retirement age is wondering if he will make it as he braves the traffic and fumes at Piccadilly Circus in London. Still it looks like he's made it all the way from America so the short hop to his pitch shouldn't be too much bother. When I was a student I got food poisoning from one of these street vendors here and my advice is steer well clear. I was watching an environmental health documentary and it showed these hot dog stands stored in a back yard with pigeon droppings all over them....Lovely! A bit more appealing for me would have been the roar and exhaust cackle of this Duple Dominant bodied Leyland Leopard taking up some local school duties.

Monday 11 June 2018

tylstrup Rutebiler Scania

An impressive Danish bus was this Scania with a Ringstead body built in that town. Of course as elsewhere here buses are operated under the owners name, but also common is by their colour and also as here by the large village they come from like this one which was taking a break in Aalborg before returning home north to Tystrup in 1982.

Sunday 10 June 2018

National Travel Bova

The beautifully rounded Bova Futura had classic looks which guaranteed it a long life but it's predecesor even though quite stylish had a starkness which was off-putting. When quite new this National Travel London coach was seen somewhere between Newark and Lincoln.

Friday 8 June 2018

Let's Go to Wolverhampton

Being a saturday with much of the city centre closed off for an event there were plenty of extra buses in Wolverhampton being diverted down Stafford Street and there are no less than three 'Let's Go' ageing Plaxton Pointer bodied Dennis Darts in this view. taken last week. The name 'Let's Go' seems rather appropriate as frustrated passengers wait for all the traffic-lights to change in this Midlands city.

Wednesday 6 June 2018

Ipswich Dennis Falcon C113 SDX

Northern Counties of Wigan got very much involved in building double-deck bodies especially for Greater Manchester but even in the early Eighties when the single-deck market was flat due to the influx of Transits and Sherpas they still managed to find single-deck orders like this one for some Dennis Falcons for Ipswich.

Tuesday 5 June 2018

First Badgerline L133 TFB

Perhaps the worst livery ever from the major groups was Barbi2 often not helped by it's hurried application which blanked out any cheerful brightwork including badges which make a bus look loved. As part of the First Group Midland Red West bought a fleet of Plaxton bodied  Dennis Lances but this example later moved on to Badgerline at Bristol where it was seen heading down the Gloucester Road in the golden tinted autumn sunshine.

Monday 4 June 2018

The Success of Norfolk Green V909 SEG

When I went there in about 2002 Independents as elsewhere in rural Britain were not only helping to keep bus services going Norfolk Green was an award winning example of what can be done with a bit of love and attention to detail. First Group was still hanging on but since then they have pulled out and even Stagecoach who have well practised ways to make things work finally ditched what they inherited when they took over Norfolk Green. All very sad and local authorities and the government should take funding public transport seriously because the true cost of neglect breaks up communities and creates more havoc on the roads. I rather like Harrod's smart Plaxton bodied Dennis and the neat Javeline badge looked just right.  Those van based Mercedes mini-buses might not have been very advanced but they were very reliable compared to the low-floor midi's we see today like the Solo and much better in country lanes.

Friday 1 June 2018

Stagecoach P603 PBU in Manchester

In the 1990's Manchester was awash with operators big and small, indeed in this view each of the vehicles has a different owner. As well as a Stagecoach Plaxton bodied Volvo and a First Manchester MCW metrobus Mk2 new to West Yorkshire PTE there is one of Dennis's Dennis Darts and tucked in behind it a Maynes.

Hvide Busser at Klampenborg St.

Denmark used to be awash with independent bus operators and this included within the Copenhagen area where some were quite big. Those the biggest however found themselves taken over by HT their 'PTE' but others remained with a decent sized fleet of buses. Hvide Busser was an example of this and it ran some AEC's when I first visited it in 1982 but by the time I took this they were running newer more normal Volvo B10M's like this example at Klampenborg Station.  Often operators were known by the colour of it's buses and hvide is as you can probably guess white.