1 (edited by derek 05-Aug-2008 15:39:12)

Topic: Old Buses

This was sent in by Ian Mahoney

The pictures show LHY 990 which to was a Swagman vehicle. It was broken up by my friends here in Brentwood Essex late sixties and the leaflet
below was in the vehicle. I took a photo of it and have the original somewhere at home tucked in a book to keep it flat but cant find it.
Will keep searching for it so you can see the whole advert. (Got lots of books!)
Apparently the vehicle had a few spares in side which included two new road springs.

The leaflet dates from 1965.

These pics were taken when in regular service, the bus spotters would know more of their history.

The flyer is a bit hard to make out


If anyone can shed light on this vehicle I would love to hear from them

Re: Old Buses

Swagman used mainly Bristol LS buses but in the mid 1970's they started to use Bristol MW & RE, not for thr India run but for European & Russian trips
375 GWN was one such vehicle, it was first run under Asian Greyhound then as Tent Tours.

Running for Asian Greyhound as "Tent Tours"
After AG but before being preserved
Now Preserved in United Welsh colours

Re: Old Buses

Some shots of early Swagman Bristol LS buses



OXW 136 on way to Brighton Bus Rally, OTT 75 leaving Guildford workshop, OTT 89 undergoing tilt test for PSV licence

Re: Old Buses

Last of the Swagman LS Bristols VDV 749, this email is from Martin Fisher

Hi, Derek

What an excellent website; sadly I have never travelled overland to the far-east, but your write-up makes me wish I had! However, I spent a career as an engineer with city bus operators in London and Birmingham - a far cry from the conditions you describe.

However, the main reason for my e-mail is that a friend of mine, Peter Wigley, owns a Bristol LS, VDV 749, which once formed part of the Asian Greyhound / Swagman fleet and was, indeed, still in Asian Greyhound livery when he purchased it a few years ago. It seems to be the only coach used by the operation that has made it into preservation and the pictures and descriptions in your story make us realise the conditions that these vehicles endured. Peter, who has no internet connection (hence my writing the e-mail), would love to hear of any stories involving VDV 749; he has been given one or two pictures of it in use on the Asian Greyhound operation, but if any former passengers have any pictures or memories of it he would love to hear from them. It would be particularly interesting to know how many runs it made - it still has Kathmandu on the destination blinds. We thought we were doing well when we drove the 300 miles from the West Midlands to Exeter in one day in September for a Royal Blue commemoration run - the coach is now 48 years old - but it pales into insignificance compared to its past life. I've attached a low-resolution copy of a slide taken after the run, showing VDV back in Royal Blue colours - personally I think it should have been kept in Asian Greyhound/Swagman green, but Peter doesn't agree with me!

I'll keep looking at your website updates, as your journey description progresses East and hope that you, or a past passenger, may be able to give us a bit more information on VDV 749.

Good wishes

VDV 749 after the Royal Blue commemoration run
VDV still in Swagman colours
Me with VDV on a visit in December 2005


Re: Old Buses

Hi hi that's old girl went through some hard times. If my memory serves me well. That one had its motor rebuilt 5 times on one trip. Kept overheating and Dad couldn't find out why until the bus returned to slough.
So many cool stories about these old buses. Most were scrapped but there are a few in preservation.
Would love to find a derelict Bristol and restore in deep Brunswick and cream wink
Let me know if one turns up .


Re: Old Buses

I remember going to school on that one. Had a hole under the rear center seat where I used to jump down into the boot. Dad drove off one time with my pal and I down there. Took a while before we came out. Not a happy dad hi hi. I also remember that was the first bus i ever did any work on. Lol and my first cut