ID ML2015_002_P59 / Ron Green

TitleMersea Charabancs
Abstract

One of the visitors to our museum's resource centre on Saturday 17th January was Lion John Gradwell. He is already working on the 2015 Lions Festival and in particicular the vintage vehicle display. The purpose of his visit was to find what the museum had on Edgar Potter Digby's Austin Chummy car.

This little car which us oldies can still remember chugging around the island selling paraffin, laid unused in the shed at the rear of Digby's for many years until sold at auction for around £2500 to an enthusiast from Boston who has fully restored it. John hopes to have it here for the festival in August. I for one would dearly like to see that again.

We went on to talk briefly about old Mersea vehicles in general and it got me thinking about the charabancs of the Primrose Bus Company's ( Or to give it it's proper title 'Mersea, Colchester and District Transport & Bus Company Ltd.') fleet.
These vehicles were mainly used in the summer months and had interchangeable bodies so that they could be converted to lorries during the winter months.

The fine photograph above, given to me by Miss Janet Woodward, shows her father Bob standing by a charabanc at Stanwell Street, Colchester.
The conductor is believed to be Kenny Thorp. I remember Kenny when he and Jack Miller ran a motor engineering business from the Hall Barn and later from a new garage (Which I helped to build in 1951) at Tolleshunt Darcy, but I can't be sure it is him.

They are on a service running between London and Clacton and are having a well deserved break. It could not have been very comfortable doing that sort of journey on solid tyres. The Reg.No. is HK5085.

The picture above shows an outing from Mersea in another Primrose 'Chara' driven by my dad's cousin Bert 'Chewy' Green. A nice load of locals in this scene.

From Mersea Life February 2015, page 59.

AuthorRon Green
PublishedFebruary 2015
SourceMersea Museum
IDML2015_002_P59
Related Images:
 HK 5085 - a Primrose Buses Mersea charabanc in Stanwell Street by the Roman wall. The driver is Bob Woodward. Probably before 1926 as the St John's Street bus park was opened that year. Before then, the buses stood outside the Hippodrome in High Street, but were limited to 15 minutes there. Otherwise they would use Stanwell Street for parking.
 From one of the slide shows run in the Museum during open hours.  SS050027
ImageID:   SS050027
Title: HK 5085 - a Primrose Buses Mersea charabanc in Stanwell Street by the Roman wall. The driver is Bob Woodward. Probably before 1926 as the St John's Street bus park was opened that year. Before then, the buses stood outside the Hippodrome in High Street, but were limited to 15 minutes there. Otherwise they would use Stanwell Street for parking.
From one of the slide shows run in the Museum during open hours.
Date:1926
Source:Mersea Museum / Janet Woodward Collection
 Primrose Mersea Island charabanc / bus. The driver is Bert 'Chewey' Green (Ron Green's cousin).  WOO_BUS_031
ImageID:   WOO_BUS_031
Title: Primrose Mersea Island charabanc / bus. The driver is Bert 'Chewey' Green (Ron Green's cousin).
Source:Mersea Museum / Janet Woodward Collection