The Newsletter of the Omnibus Society Inc., PO Box 9801, Wellington,
Editor: Mike Secker – Contact details at the foot of the last page.
often needs the volunteer services of any member with a “P” licence who can
offer to help drive some of the Society’s charters, which are a source of vital
revenue to help fund the maintenance and restoration of our vehicles. If you
wish to gain a licence, the Society can help you do this. Please phone Henry
Brittain, Ph. 476 7278, or Peter Rendall, Ph. 970 1405.
OUR SOCIETY, DEPOT ANDFLEET… thanks to Morris Moller
Our newly re-fettled
(courtesy of the Morgans’ generosity) Eastbourne
Borough Council No.20 at its
spiritual home, the now safe (I trust !) ex-EBC art deco bus barn. (Photo: Morris Moller)
RECENT EVENTS… thanks to Michael Berry
The Wally No.8 TourWednesday 12 November, 2008, was a beautiful evening on which to run
this trip using the Society’s recently acquired Bedford VAS ex-Wally Hammond.This 20 seat vehicle is powered by gas. Seven
members enjoyed a ride that saw Wellington
at its best: the eastern seaside suburbs bathed in the evening sunshine and
views from the western hill suburbs in the twilight as the city lights
twinkled.A stop was made to inspect
buses at Wayne
Little’s yard that included Routemaster RM1670, AEC
Regent RT4189 and halfcab WCT 251.Fish
& chips were devoured at Seatoun.
Eastbourne 20 Dinner
Trip Our Christmas
Dinner trip on Wednesday 10 December had about 12 members on the bus whilst
several others met us at the venue.Eastbourne 20 looked fine in its former Eastbourne
cream and red striped livery.It was like
a time warp as it visited its old home depot at Eastbourne,
although the resident buses are now purple and orange.The Hutt City Council has just earmarked the
decaying building for renovation.At the
Lifeboat Tavern we enjoyed a good meal at a reasonable cost.Like the previous trip, Wellington’s scenery and harbour added to the
enjoyment of the journey being in the sunshine on the outward trip and in the
twilight on the return.
For both of these
trips I wish to thank the Society’s Bus Operating Group for providing the buses
and Morris Moller for driving them.
Kapiti Rover Unlike the previous two trips, the weather was
uncooperative on Saturday 28 February.This may have put off members as nobody turned up at the set time.However, members can do the trip whenever
they like as it featured scheduled services.I went ahead with the trip and had the bonus of addition bus rides on
the train replacement between Wellington
and Tawa in both directions (Newlands 74
greeted me at the Mana Coach Services’ Paraparaumu Depot and gave me a guided
tour of the buses that were in the yard.Light rain was falling but it never got any worse than that during the
day.We then boarded bus 83 driven by Mike’s colleague, Dave,
who drove to the railway station to work the 1100 departure of route 71.This service changes to route 74P at ParaparaumuBeach and continues on via Raumati to
the station.Mike left me here and I
continued on with the schedule using 86
on route72 to ParaparaumuBeach and 85
on route 77 to Waikanae.The buses that
Mana use for the weekend services are Mercedes 0305 with Designline
bodies.As all the Kapiti bus services
are scheduled to meet themselves and the trains at the railway station at half
hourly intervals, this tour is easy to do at will.My thanks to Mike Secker for arranging the
depot visit and for the interesting commentary that he gave on the rover.
*Wednesday 1 April (to be confirmed) – evening
trolleybus tour using new trolleybus – no joke!
*May (date to be advised) – Slide show of Peter
Rendall’s European trip, at his house.
be alert for further news about a Trolleybus Festival later in the year.
After all, sixty years ago, in 1949, the current Wellington trolleybus system was inaugurated.
OBSERVATIONS…Thanks to Graeme Inwood, Peter King, Nick Stoneman ,
CHRISTCHURCH – Nick records that Christchurch has just
opened another new lounge in the Bus Exchange. He observes that it is nothing
exciting – it is simply that the authorities have decided that it was time that
Platform D passengers had better facilities. They have also re-organised the
platform D and E layouts and buses now depart from an extended bus stop.
this a contender for a “classic NZ bus” title? With its German VoV Citibus style body, Redbus
622, a MAN SL202, looks
handsome as it passes through Cathedral
Square recently. Similar buses, some 3-axle, have
served, or are still serving, in Auckland,
(Photo: Nick Stoneman)
DUNEDIN – Nick notes that, on the 13
March, tenders closed for 2009. Changes this year will see some improvements to
the off-peak timetable for the Portobello and Port Chalmers routes. Tenders
this year were mostly for what has been Dunedin
Passenger Transport’s work. Further changes will be that the Maori
Hillservices will be divided into two
routes – instead of being a 40 minute timetable with two buses, it will be a 30
minute timetable with four buses. Ocean Grove/ GardenVillage
is also up for tender. Nick has also sent me the list of route numbers for Dunedin routes and I will
publish it in a future issue.
HAWKESBAY – Nimons – this august NZ
transport company operated its last urban bus services in the Bay at the end of
January this year. As Peter notes, the company has had a proud history of
providing a transport service to its community for 104 years. Go Bus of Hamilton have taken over
all the local urban services. Peter is understandably bitter about the process
that has brought about this state of affairs (and he’s not alone in his
reaction). Later published items in the national press on the subject have
mentioned an enquiry being set up to look at the process of tendering, but this
will have no effect on the results that have impacted so much on the operations
of companies like Nimons, Waipawa Buses, Dempsey Buses and so on. It is hard to
discern what the rationale is, behind such a process.
30 January, 2009 “And
yes, I got an ex-Wellington Leyland in on the
act.117 (ex- 463) waits at
Flaxmere terminus at
to return to Hastings
and then to Havelock
Depot on its last ever service working,”says
Peter King, the photographer and the driver of 117. He notes that 107 worked the last run..
WELLINGTON –Go Wellington
– New friends arrive, old friends continue to depart….
Top:Pictured on 11 March, 2009, Volvo
trolley 251,shorn of poles
and much more, about to go for the chop the next day. Note new trolley 341
apparently hustling at the rear! Bottom: Brand new trolley 369,
not yet showing any rego, pictured on the same day. (Photos: Graeme Inwood)
Coach Services –
Hino/Designline 34-seat coach has been reported gone from Kapiti. Some body
rectification was to have been done and it was to be sold. Since this note was
made, 143 has appeared on a charter for Newlands during March, ironically out
at Paraparaumu!! Toyota131 is on loan to Porirua Depot as I write.At present ex-Ritchies
458, an Ansair-bodied Mercedes O305, is being dismantled for spares for
SLFs, 77 – 88. New arrivals at Kapiti, from Newlands Depot, are 148/
YN6136 and 149/ YN6151, both Volvo B10Ms. They have Designline bodies
with fronts similar in appearance to Merc’s 77-88 but, of course, they are
high-floor, though the front step will kneel. They are to replace Hino RKs 30
and 42, both now with Howick and Eastern and still in green. The
B10Ms each have “spotting” differences, too, in the front roofline shape and
rear door treatment.