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Website launched in August 1996, and this page was last updated on 3 January 2020.


Here, to welcome everyone to the New Year, is something a bit different for this website - a picture that has been artistically coloured, in this case by Malcolm Fraser. This is Sunderland Corporation No.180 (DBR 680), a Guy Arab with a Crossley body, when brand new in early 1954 seen in Ryhope Road looking south. The bus stop is outside the gates into Backhouse Park. It was a tram stop until November 1952 and the poles are still in place carrying the street lights.

Although the origin of the photo is not known, the colour was added by Malcolm and this is just one example of his art. Much more of his work can be found in his Flickr collection here where you will find dozens of buses, trams, horse buses, trolleybuses and trains brought back to life with the miracle of colour. I love it all and many thanks to Malcolm for this season's STAR PICTURE.

I wish all my readers A VERY HAPPY AND HEALTHY 2020!

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Michael Wright sent me this picture in April 2019 to ask if I could throw any light on the bus and the operator. His Grandad (Ernest Ward, on the right with the cleanest boots!) worked for the firm but that's about all Michael knows, apart from still having his driver's badge ("City of Wakefield No.948"), although it's the chap on the left who seems to be the driver in this picture.

Well, the route - Leeds to Wakefield on an easterly diversion through Rothwell and Stanley - later became West Riding route 92. It must have been in demand because West Riding were running it every 20 minutes by the 1950s! But what sort of bus is it, and who were "N & W Motor Service"? Perhaps they were absorbed into West Riding eventually.

Please email me if you can ddd more information. Thanks.

Peter Delaney came back very quickly with a torrent of useful information! Here's what he wrote;

"N & W would be Newton and Ward Ltd, a company formed in August 1928 to 'acquire and carry on the motor omnibus business heretobefore carried on at Rothwell, Yorkshire, by Messrs Newton and Ward in partnership', and had its registered office at Oulton Lane Garage in Rothwell (although neither Mr Newton nor Mr Ward were directors of the company).
"Leeds City Council noted in December 1925 that several firms from outside the city had agreed to conditions to be included on their licences, and amongst those firms was Newton & Ward, who were running from Lee Moor into Leeds. Six months later in June 1926 the Leeds Watch Committee approved a proposal for Newton & Ward to acquire the motor omnibus service between Leeds and Swillington previously run by Burks Brothers. The firm was also listed in the March 1928 issue of Commercial Motor magazine as having bought some (unspecified) Leylands.
"At a meeting on 31 August 1932 the company was formally put into voluntary liquidation, with the winding-up meeting held in Leeds on 29 November that year. The location of the first meeting at Belle Isle, Wakefield may be 'relevant'? The directors of Newton & Ward Ltd were H England, G H Margrave, A Corker, R Harkey, A Carrington and J Stonehouse. H England was the first General Manager of West Riding, and he was succeeded by G H Margrave with H England becoming Managing Director. It looks as if there was a connection with West Riding, although whether this was a formal one (such as West Riding buying Newton & Ward) I have not been able to find. I wonder if the Ernest Ward in the picture is related to the Ward of Newton & Ward?"

Well that's a good question at the end there, and it also makes you wonder if the other chap is Mr Newton! Michael Wright then asked his Mum (who is Ernest Ward’s daughter) about it, but unfortunately she said that his Grandad was not related to the owners of N&W services. Anyway thanks very much to Peter for his comprehensive response, and any further information would be most welcome.

John Bennett recognised the type of bus. He said "The bus in the picture is an ADC. I've tried to read the reg number in the back window, but cannot get the image sharp enough. It is either WW 2383, an ADC 416, chassis number 416016 (body maker not known) B32F, new in 6/27
or WW 1839, an ADC 417, chassis number 417060, Taylor (Barnsley) B32F, new in 5/27
or WW 5369, an ADC 416, chassis number 416640, (body maker not known) B32F, new in 3/28.
Newton & Ward also had three Leyland Lion PLSC and a Maudslay ML3B when they sold out to West Riding in September 1932."

Many thanks John. But then I received an email from John McSparron who directed me to this page. Clearly taken during the same photo session, the crew have moved about a bit in this new picture and the registration WW 5369 is revealed. Problem solved, I'd say. Thanks a lot John.


The series of bus rallies that took place in London during the 1970s and 80s were organised by Mike Kay.

Welcome to the home of classic buses and coaches on the net - I'm Dick Gilbert. This site is all about nostalgia for British passenger transport vehicles from the 1920s to the 1960s, with an unashamed bias towards 'halfcabs'.

Each page has a different colour scheme which is supposed to be reminiscent of some bus or coach company from the era, and this one is meant to represent Western / Southern National. As a result of this arrangement, some of the pages are hard to read, and some will scramble your brain. I'm sure you'll manage.

My interest in British buses began in the late 1950s and early 1960s, and the buses and coaches that were around then are all 'classics' now. It was an interesting period, when there were still pre-war and wartime 'utility' machines about (although mostly on the point of retirement), and a large number of halfcab vehicles that had been built immediately after the war. At the same time, new products like the Leyland Atlantean, AEC Regent V, and a host of 'modern' coach designs (Plaxton Panorama, Harrington Cavalier, Weymann Fanfare etc.) were appearing. It was a transitional period when vehicles from the 1930s, 40s, 50s and 60s could all be seen in use at the same time.

Having been born in south London, London Transport was the first operator that I lived with, then we moved to Sussex and I grew up with Southdown, Maidstone & District, East Kent, and the municipal fleets of Eastbourne and Brighton, as well as the large number of excursion coaches that used to visit the south coast every summer.

In the early 1960s I used to make trips to London to visit Victoria Coach Station, or see the last of the London Transport trolleybuses, or the last halfcab single deckers (TDs). Unfortunately, although I saw what I went to see, most of the photographs I took are not particularly brilliant, or have been lost. However I do have some black & white pictures taken at Victoria Coach Station, London, and in Sussex between 1960 and 1962 which are barely reasonable, and some of them appear around this site. Here's one;

Lincolnshire Leyland Cub

This was taken at 'The Crumbles', Eastbourne, in the summer of 1962, where Claude Lane was running the narrow gauge Eastbourne Tramway (now moved to Seaton, Devon). He had used this ex Lincolnshire Road Car Leyland KPZ01 Cub as a lorry in the past, and it was left to rot outside his depot. New in May 1937 it was FW 8855, originally fleet number LC502, one of thirty delivered that year with Brush B20F bodies. I guess someone might rescue it these days.

I attend a few rallies around the country, and like to see the old machines that people have restored. Reviews and/or pictures of some of the shows I attend appear on the pages here, although it can take a while before I get round to it. The whole idea of the site is to entertain the sad souls (like me !) who have a soft spot for old PSVs, and also be a sorting office for information on the subject.

It's all for fun, so relax and have a wistful rummage through the scrapbook. If you weren't around in the 1960s (and they say that, if you were, you won't remember it) then these pages might provide an insight into the variety of glamorous machines that could be seen on British streets at the time.

Incidentally, this site has no connection whatsoever with Classic Bus magazine, but I thoroughly, absolutely, unreservedly and totally recommend it to anyone with an interest in the subject. It is published 6 times a year, and regular readers all wish it was 12 times a year. You can order it through your local newsagent or go to this website. When it falls on your doorstep it's like when the delivery guy has brought you a really good pizza.

Please call back from time to time, as changes are taking place here all the time, and let me know if you spot a mistake somewhere - I do try to keep things pretty accurate. I know that there are some real boffins out there, and I need you to tell me when something is inaccurate. So welcome to the site, browse around and make yourself at home.






SOME QUICK LINKS WITHIN THIS WEBSITE;  Email   Links   THE COMPLETE WEBSITE MENU   Events Diary   Halfcab list   Small-Ads   Classic Irish Buses