ID ML2014_006_P60 / Ron Green

TitleMersea buses - article in Mersea Life.
AbstractLooking through the May edition of Mersea Life and Lion John Gradwell's notice of the Lion's Transport Display and Summer Show, I was reminded that I must have a ride on one of the preserved Eastern National buses that will be running between the show at Waldegraves and the MICA centre again this year on 9th August.

I'm sure it will bring back memories of the many trips I had on the old double deckers and that special smell when you went up on to the top deck - a combination of cigarette smoke, ladies perfume, Brylcream and diesel fumes. I often use my bus pass these days but today's buses don't have that aroma. Smoking is not allowed and I guess Brylcream has long since gone out of production.


Photograph by Ron Fisher

John has asked if anyone can provide details of the Eastern National double decker seen splashing through the Strood in the image accompaning his article. Taking my copy of THE YEARS BETWEEN 1909 - 1969 Vol 2 The Eastern National Story from 1930 from my bookshelf, I have found the details of the bus ONO80 featured in the illustration. It was part of a large batch delivered in the later part of 1949 to early 1950. It was a Bristol chassis with a Gardner K5G diesel engine. The body like most of the Eastern National buses of that period was by Eastern Coachworks, Lowestoft. The original fleet number was 4059 changing to 1342 in the 1954 renumbering and to 2270 in 1964.

I can remember the Eastern National first coming on the Mersea, taking over from The Primrose buses, Underwoods, Thorps and the Colchester based Berry's which also ran a service to Mersea - and it was the first to do so. I am probably one of the few remaining Mersea people to have done the journey into Colchester in a Primrose bus. It was not one of the more photographed open topped buses but one of the the three Guy saloons which were sold to the Eastern National Omnibus Company in December 1935 and although given fleet numbers probably did little work with their new owners. I do believe they ended up as caravans. One in Goings Lane and one in Seaview Avenue.

The best Mersea fleet to be taken over by Eastern National was the blue and cream buses of Philip Underwood. Four of these were given fleet numbers 3577 to 3580. The 32 seater AEC Regal Reg No MV 2272 survived in service to be given fleet No. 141 in the 1954 renumbering and was believed to be one of the longest serving vehicles in the Eastern National fleet, demonstrating the quality of the Underwood fleet. Although not Mersea based, A.W. Berry's buses based at Port Lane, Colchester ran a regular service to Mersea and were the pioneers of this route. They were also engineers and amoung a collection of fine Berry's photographs in Our Mersea Island Museum is one of one of the very first steam driven lorries. This was built at the Port Lane works.


Steam lorry built by A.W. Berry for Colchester Brewing Company.
Photograph from McArthur Family Collection


Drivers and conductors at the Eastern National bus station at West Mersea, the day before the depot closed in 1973. Originally built for Primrose buses, it is now the site of MICA and the bus garage is the MICA large hall.
L-R 1. Jack Saye, 2. George Westnedge, 3. Alec Baverstock, 4. Ted Emms, 5. Norman Jaggard, 6. Bill Rudge, 7. Jim Ilsley, 8. Ray Humm, 9. Wilf Cross, 10. John Pavey, 11. Harry Conway, 12. Herbie Mole.

Article by Ron Green published in June 2014 edition of Mersea Life, page 60.

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AuthorRon Green
SourceMersea Museum
IDML2014_006_P60
Related Images:
 Steam lorry built by A.W. Berry for Colchester Brewing Company. Registration F536. Built 1902-03 [ Modern Transport, 27 February 1937 ]  AWB_FLT_001
ImageID:   AWB_FLT_001
Title: Steam lorry built by A.W. Berry for Colchester Brewing Company. Registration F536. Built 1902-03 [ Modern Transport, 27 February 1937 ]
Date:c1903
Source:Mersea Museum / McArthur Family Collection
 Eastern National Bristol double decker bus ONO80 crossing the Strood onto Mersea Island at high tide.
 The photograph is part of Ron's extensive collection on www.flickr.com
</p>
<p>Ron Green wrote in Mersea Life June 2014:
 The bus was part of a large batch delivered in the later part of 1949 to early 1950. It was a Bristol chassis with a Gardner K5G diesel engine. The body like most of the Eastern National buses of that period was by Eastern Coachworks, Lowestoft.
The original fleet number was 4059 changing to 1342 in the 1954 renumbering and to 2270 in 1964.
</p>  RFR_001
ImageID:   RFR_001
Title: Eastern National Bristol double decker bus ONO80 crossing the Strood onto Mersea Island at high tide.
The photograph is part of Ron's extensive collection on www.flickr.com

Ron Green wrote in Mersea Life June 2014:
The bus was part of a large batch delivered in the later part of 1949 to early 1950. It was a Bristol chassis with a Gardner K5G diesel engine. The body like most of the Eastern National buses of that period was by Eastern Coachworks, Lowestoft. The original fleet number was 4059 changing to 1342 in the 1954 renumbering and to 2270 in 1964.

Date:March 1963
Source:Mersea Museum / Ron Fisher
 Drivers and conductors at the Eastern National bus station at West Mersea, the day before the depot closed in 1973. Originally built for Primrose buses, it is now the site of MICA and the bus garage is the MICA large hall.
 L-R 1. Jack Saye, 2. George Westnedge, 3. Alec Baverstock, 4. Ted Emms, 5. Norman Jaggard, 6. Bill Rudge, 7. Jim Ilsley, 8. Ray Humm, 9. Wilf Cross, 10. John Pavey, 11. Harry Conway, 12. Herbie Mole.
 Geoff Wyncoll has a copy of the picture - he says that these are the men that brought the Peldon children to school on Mersea.  RG03_BUS_001
ImageID:   RG03_BUS_001
Title: Drivers and conductors at the Eastern National bus station at West Mersea, the day before the depot closed in 1973. Originally built for Primrose buses, it is now the site of MICA and the bus garage is the MICA large hall.
L-R 1. Jack Saye, 2. George Westnedge, 3. Alec Baverstock, 4. Ted Emms, 5. Norman Jaggard, 6. Bill Rudge, 7. Jim Ilsley, 8. Ray Humm, 9. Wilf Cross, 10. John Pavey, 11. Harry Conway, 12. Herbie Mole.
Geoff Wyncoll has a copy of the picture - he says that these are the men that brought the Peldon children to school on Mersea.
Date:30 March 1973
Source:Ron Green Collection