East Sussex Omnibus Society

Leyland Lion - No. 12


Meetings 2010


Our meetings take place on the second Thursday of each month at the Red Lion Pub at Stone Cross near Eastbourne, unless stated otherwise.

We have put together a varied programme of events and will do our utmost to keep within the calendar, however, we reserve the right to alter or cancel the dates where applicable.

The programme for 2010 is listed below.

14th JanuaryWe welcome the return of Alan Snatt with ‘Old and New’.
11th FebruaryGlyn Kraemer-Johnson delves into his photograph collection.
11th MarchDave Warren entertains us after far too long.
8th AprilA Presentation by Andrew Dyer, Managing Director, Stagecoach South.
1st & 2nd MayMagnificent Motors Rally on Eastbourne Seafront.
For more information on this event, visit the website at www.magnificentmotors.co.uk
13th MayRoy Mellor presents ‘Around and about’.
10th JuneOur annual run out for a pint leaving from Red Lion, Stone Cross at 8pm sharp.
8th JulyAnnual General Meeting.
Followed by Dave Toy and his days with Brighton Borough Transport.
12th AugustSocial Evening at Red Lion. Enjoy an evening of snacks and your favourite slides!
28th to 30th AugustFestival of Transport Show at Hellingly.
For more information on this event, visit the Eastbourne Historic Vehicle Club website at www.ehvc.co.uk
9th SeptemberRoger French, Managing Director, Brighton & Hove brings us up to date on the company.
14th OctoberGerald Mead – ‘Sure to warm us up as winter marches on’.
11th NovemberAdam Yates takes us on a ‘Midland Journey’.
Please note that this meeting has been cancelled due to the venue having unexpected building works.
9th DecemberChristmas Social Evening with Films, Raffle and a Buffet.

- Meetings 2010 - printable PDF file.


Meeting Reports

  Reports of this year's meetings are listed below. For reports of other year's meetings, click here.
December 2010
Christmas Social Evening with Films, Raffle and a Buffet.

Our December meeting was of the tried and tested format of members slides garnished witha raffle and buffet put on by The Red Lion. Sometimes I wonder if the formula should be changed especially when only a few slides come along. This meeting would prove the contrary inasmuch there was enough slides to fill the evening which actually slipped past the bewitching hour of 10 o'clock!

Not realising straight away the number of slides for the evening, I started proceedings with twenty slides opening with a Hong Kong Dennis Trident with Met Sec bodywork. After a couple of German Frankfurt views taken in October it was then back home with a selection of this years offerings covering amongst other bits and pieces the sceme in Manchester with their new trams and a small Blackpool event at Heaton Park. I finally ended up with the Brighton 75 year rally at Brighton. It was then the turn of Roy Meller who came up with some superb views in and around our area and up at Cambridge. The theme overall was the scene today covering the movement of vehicles within the Stagecoach empire. Roy sounded more at ease this year and it was great to see some of his stunning slides again.

It was break time all too soon when we enjoyed the buffet followed by David Vaughan's raffle which is entertainment in its own right with David's ability to entertain especially at the mercy of the sound system.

After the break it was the turn of Terry Blackman who took us through East Sussex and Kent countryside. His theme was to capture the scene as it changed with re-tendering of various routes in both counties, the result was superb views as ever. It was then the turn of Ted Haynes who has not shown his slides for more years than I care to remember. He made up for lost time by having your Secretary on the edge of his seat with trams in Portugal covering the new system new Lisbon, Sintra historic trams, Lisbon and then we went over the water to the United States. Here we saw the scene with new trolleybuses and trams. You can guess I was glued tot he screen especially with his 620 slides with were the icing on the cake. Finally it was the turn of Gerald Mead who gave us a look at the Metropolis and the varied scene in London. As always all good things come to an end when I had to close the meeting when I realised it was past 10 o'clock.

Before I conclude a huge thanks to Ted Haynes, Gerald Mead, Terry Blackman and Roy Meller for their selections, David Vaughan for the raffle and my wife in helping with the raffle. As a feather in my cap my wife commented on the superb quality of all the slides, so there! Now it is 2011 next stop!

John Bishop

September 2010
Roger French, Managing Director, Brighton & Hove brings us up to date on the company.

Regretfully I was not able to be at the meeting owing to a clash of dates so I am grateful to Gerald Mead for these notes of the meeting. Appreciating all the work to engage Roger French with emails and letters over the last year I fell at the last hurdle!

This was the second time Roger has come to our meeting so on the basis we never upset Roger, he was able to explain the historu of the Brighton Hove & District Company better known as BH&D. For me I cut my teeth with our hobby when at the tender age of 11 years I took notice of the Southdown and more importantly BH&D thus have lived through 50 of the 75 years of the company's existence. Roger showed how the company arose from Thomas Tilling Ltd in 1935 and never looked back although it took years to shake off that past image for I remember many members of the public referring to the red buses as 'Tilling' however through good marketing that is assigned to the history book until the RML came on the scene last year showing how grateful they were and recognising the past heritage.

The next part of was a lesson to most other companies in the art of selling to company and as stated above through the marketing and keeping the main structure together there is no confusion so it is hats off for Roger and his team.

After the interval it was a question and answer session which rounded off a great evening.

John Bishop

May 2010
Roy Mellor presents ‘Around and about’.

The May meeting was chaired by Roy Mellor who is well known for his 'back page' views in Bustopics. I have to say I have been impressed by his views from time to time especially when he showed his views at a slide free-for-all last year. I am as guilty as many an enthusiast for I only ever see the vehicle I am photographing until Gerald Mead appeared on the scene which made me think and I am sure every other member is the same.

When Roy started his show it was here in Sussex before we were transported up to the Tyne and Wear area and were soon to learn his interest was beyond buses with views of railways and more importantly in my view the Tyne and Wear Metro which, regretfully, I found totally uninspiring except for one of the stations which showed artistic tiling. With views closer to home in and around Eastbourne we soon came to realise his close association of ideas with Gerald Mead and close appreciation to lamp posts and the like thus a good proportion of photographs were taken on the Stone Cross to Hailsham road. For so many years we do our own thing with photographs and Roy renewed our understanding to record the bus scene as it happens. Our show would take us to Wales with views in the Stagecoach area including views in the Islwyn Borough before the Stagecoach takeover earlier this year.

The show was by way of our computer and the video projector which if nothing else shows just how we can continue a show with the longest nights of the year. With slides the early part of the evening would have found us struggling. Being an old git the subject was very new but now I have come to realise that everything we take today is instant history so a huge thanks to Roy for taking a look at the ever changing face of the bus industry, encouraging us to sit up and for compiling the show which was full, to say the very least, of up-to-date facts. Cheers Roy.

John Bishop

April 2010
Presentation by Andrew Dyer, Managing Director, Stagecoach South.

The April meeting was by way of a diversion to the normal slide or video presentation whereby we were able to welcome the Managing Director of Stagecoach South, Andrew Dyer.

I had heard a lot about him from our friends at the Surfleet Circle, Worthing, who had met on a number of occasions saying just how interesting he was. Well this was put to the test and I can say that no one member was disappointed. He opened with a claim that the lights in the Red Lion must have the largest lamp shades which instantly broke the ice in a manner of speaking. Andrew gave us a history of his life within the industry exclaiming he was coming up to the 40th year. Much of his career was in the Stagecoach empire with experience in South West Trains where he would learn another language from the rail employees. It was soon back to the buses and a jargon understood by both those in the industry and us enthusiasts. It was then to the scene today with concessionary fares topping the bill. Being the proud owner of a bus pass and dealing with members on the Cuckmere Community Bus it is amazing just how many councils Stagecoach have to deal with but it has to be said at the end of the day they are not kept waiting.

Vehicle wise we were lead through the various vehicles and sadly, after 95 years, the tradition of Leyland vehicles will be broken when the last Olympian is withdrawn this year. Stagecoach are aware of the past heritage and current heritage when various vehicles are kept for posterity even a Dennis Dart outlined last month in Bustopics. Naturally we covered the new Scania and the increased frequency on the 700 route from Brighton to Portmouth.

As you will gather this was a first class presentation and an ideal ambassador for Stagecoach. At one stage you could have heard a pin drop which is an amazing achievement. Finally a vote of thanks to Jeremy Dixon who made all the arrangements for Andrew to come over from Chichester.

John Bishop

March 2010
Dave Warren entertains us after far too long.

The March meeting welcomed back Dave and his brother Chris Warren from Hove with a slide presentation of thier car trip to Spain way back in the early seventies. I have to admit I was not sure of their subject matter but it is usually entertaining to say the very least.

In these early days of the seventies era this would be quite an adventure compared with today's jetting around the globe plus the fact that Spain was still a dictatorship with all the usual restrictions on photography.

We started off with the ferry across the English Channel to France and then it was a slow drive through the country where we would sample some home grown French buses which I have to admit where never my favourites except when they had sticks on their roofs! For me the interest started when we crossed the Spanish border with a look at light rail and of course the proliferation of trolleybuses. As it happens there was a decree by the government in or about 1973 all electric traction will go. This prompted me to go with a colleague to Spain to film the trolleybuses. We were taken through the northern reaches of Spain and into Portugal where we saw the trolleybuses of Braga, Coimbra and Porto along with the trams of Lisbon, Porto and Coimbra. All these bar Lisbon have still to be discovered by me so it was especially nice to see these cities. Braga was interesting for the fleet of buses and trolleybuses were immaculate. Quite bizarrely the whole fleet and infrastructure was purchased from Heilbronn in the then Western Germany.

Whilst I imagine this would not please every member I was glued to the screen and the presentation was over all too soon. Before any member asks I honestly did not know what was to come! Cannot help thinking that this was compiled with me in mind - never mind!

John Bishop

February 2010
Glyn Kraemer-Johnson delves into his photograph collection.

The February meeting was hosted by our Treasurer Glyn Kraemer-Johnson who split his presentations into two seperate halfs dedicated to his travels both at home and abroad. The second half gave us an insight into his new book being prepared for Capital Transport.

With an animated start by Tony Hancock we were soon away on our travels to various rallies all using our laptop and video projector which I have to admit is changing the face of presentations these days. It was apparent a favourite day for Glyn was the Alton event or at least it was until Glyn outlined how the last bus never ran leaving him stranded and having to take a train back which proved a costly exercise! We visited Austria to see the Innsbruck trams which have all be replaced by the new Bombardier cars so history already. Glyn is rather like myself with a general interest with views of the steam locomotives. We left Innsbruck visiting an Italian operator which proved quite interesting.

After the break Glyn had the audience gasping for more when he showed us much of the material for his new Capital Transport book covering the Southdown area from Portsmouth to Hastings with all the associated operators in the shape of Portsmouth and Brighton Corporations, Brighton, Hove and District, Maidstone & District and East Kent. The book is due out in the summer and the audience were all potential customers as a result. I thought it was a nice touch that all versions of the Brighton Corporation liveries were covered i.e. blue and what I refer to as a 'traditional red and cream'. Needless to say some real vintage Southdown vehicles were covered including a Beadle bodied Leyland TD5 complete with dark green lines. For me capturing pre-war Leyland Titans was the icing on the cake not to say I did not appreciate the stunning shots of the 1500 class Leyland Royal Tigers.

Great evening Glyn and very many thanks for all your hard work.

John Bishop

January 2010
We welcome the return of Alan Snatt with ‘Old and New’.

As John Bishop was away enjoying some winter sun and Glyn was involved in some important business at the Home Office (they let hime go eventually!) it fell to me to introduce our speaker for the January meeting. It was of course my old friend and former Lion Group member Alan Snatt. The meeting was, sadly, sparsely attended, but those who did brave the slush and ice were in for a treat.

The show started with a few shots of trains, boats and planes to ensure some variety, but we were then whisked off on a round Britain tour of bygone bus and coach fleets, with a series of superb black and white shots of buses and coaches in the 50s and 60s.

Starting in Eastbourne and working through our local bus companies we progressed through the home counties and the Midlands, up the West coast and into Scotland, returning via the East coast to home ground once again. Alan has always had an interest in touring coaches and showed us some rare examples of body.chassis combination and some long defunct companies. There were also some pictures fo unique vehicles such as the MCW Athena and Park Royal 'Royalist'. I enjoyed seeing some of the smaller independents with second-hand vehicles that he came across on his travels, and of course favourites of might such as East Kent and City of Oxford. There were even a few trolleybuses!

All in all the show was a cornucopia of delightful memories which those not present will regret missing so I finished by misquoting Shakespeare's Richard the Third "Englishmen still abed will think themselves cursed that they were not here on St Alan's Day!"

David Vaughan

Page last Updated: 23rd January 2011

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