I AM CHRISTOPHER LEACH THE ARTIST. I started this blog so that I can share with everyone my vast collection of transport photographs showing a personal and nostalgic view of the industry with images that span some 45 years taking in the U.K and some of Europe. I have no darkroom and so rather than being the perfectionist after tidying them up I upload the images warts and all, and even those that won't scan squarely or are scratched. In a way it adds age and character. You are all free to download these for your personal use but please remember I still own them and you are not just free to use them without prior permission for any knd of publishing. Click on images to enlarge them and if you want to see more leave your comments or visit my website for the mother-site with galleries including those Buses & Girls: PICTUREWORLD

Monday, 31 October 2011

Trent Leylands at Derby Bus Station

Derby as well as being home to the hus company Trent, the town as it was then was famed for it's architecturally iconic art-deco influenced bus station dating from the early Twenties. Of course despite this it has recently been demolished in the name of progress! The bus operator's didn't like it much though as being a curved shape it was not suitable for modern large buses. However these three Leylands looked happy enough in this Sixties view.

Mercedes Post Bus on Airport Servive in Basle

Here was PTT owned Post Bus P25505 departing from outside the impressive railway station at Basle on the single route to the Airport. Saurer RH's had been been the regular performers but from the early Nineties Mercedes-Benz 0405's like P25505 became the norm.

Friday, 28 October 2011

Crew Change at BVG Zehlendorf Garage

In the Nineties Volvo must have hoped for great things when it secured an order for a batch of buses off the huge BVG. But in Berlin today the scene is still dominated by MAN double-deckers and Mercedes based vehicles like the articulated Solaris. The brighter Dutch inspired yellow based livery was a great improvement on the previous porridge colour used by German city bus fleets since the early days.

Bus Wars Competition in Wigan

I feel much of the fierce competition following Deregulation was rather childish, anyway that's how I see the way the former Liverpool and Manchester PTE's invaded one another's vast territory for neither side could have gained much from it. But it certainly gave us enthusiasts a bit more to see and wonder about like for instance was Merseyside trying to steal a bit of the old much missed Lancashire United Magic too? Merseyside PTE had standardised largely on Leyland Atlanteans but as they were phased out more other double-deck manufacturers appeared including MCW with the Metrobus like No.0811 F811YLV which would have offered a rather pleasant ride back to Liverpool from Wigan just situated in the former Manchester area.

Sunday, 23 October 2011

WMTravel Coach Seated Metrobus

When West Midland's applied grey to it's new coach seated Metrobuses to make them stand out it was rather effective, but as with First Group when the whole fleet slowly turns to grey it can be slightly dull. Having said that it might have seemed an eternity but following Deregulation many liveries seem to alter all the time including Travel West Midlands.No.2959 D959 NDA was on the longer type limited stop 900 Service to Coventry which they were bought to do.

Thursday, 20 October 2011

1968: The Manchester bus for the Seventies

Whereas under pioneering General Manager Ralph Bennett the nearby crafted East-Lancs bodied Bolton Atlanteans had looked fresh and exciting a move to Manchester produced the even more modern and bigger 'one person'  Mancunian in it's bold red and white livery which had looked positively surreal when it first appeared on the streets. Leylands started to arrive before Fleetline orders and stole most of the glory like No.1024 worked the 19 the first route.

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

Shiver: Winter is coming down your road

Every cloud has a silver lining and just think of all those fab festive bus scenes you can shoot. As for myself I love the snow these days as I have a nice warm bed, then afternoon snooker to watch on the TV and in the evening with a hot cup of tea I relax and white chaos on the news. Seriously though I wouldn't take to heart the warning of terrible weather again this year as in truth nobody knows what the weather will do more than a couple of weeks ahead and now it is is so unpredictable they can't even follow past trends. In this view Geoff Arrowsmith heads back into Stafford from The Heywoods in Staffordian Leopard ex Nat Travel East YWE514M

Eilat's Breakdown Tender in 1979

This might be just a cut down and customised Leyland Royal Tiger Worldmaster, but this beefy recovery vehicle belonging to TAN at Eilat certainly looked the business. I'm not sure what Voca would say about the large tyre mounted on the front but with so much sand drifting about in the desert obviously there are times when it had to push them out as well as pull and tow.

Sunday, 16 October 2011

Fleetlines in Brum

Despite NOV791G having been delivered to the Birmingham City Transport fleet and four years later VOX131K to the West Midlands PTE there are obvious similarities between these Daimler Fleetlines.

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Merseybus Ailsa 0073

Merseyside PTE bought a number of small batches of various buses in the early Eighties including some Alexander R-bodied Ailsas. No.0073 was visiting Liverpool from the Wirral on service to Hewall.

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Best Friends on a City Break in Berlin

I really miss the older Berlin double-deckers but with their steering and entrances on the correct side of the bus right across Europe they are favoured over modern former British bus for sightseeing conversion. MAN 1909 still belonged to the main BVG Berlin operator but it has now pulled out of this competitive tourist business. However there are still a number of former Berlin buses at work here.

Saturday, 8 October 2011

A glimpse inside Midland Red Stafford Garage.

Apart from just one double-decker, recently arrived former Trent Fleetline 2541 which quickly moved on to Ludlow and Hereford all these buses were typical of the Stafford fleet in the Eighties.  After Deregulation as well as Mark1's all eleven MRN National2's were here and the pod-less type was ideal for the 824 to Lichfield with that low bridge at Colwich. 807-811 were new here. Of  the JHA-L Leopards 225 was also new here and was later joined by spare sister 224 when Oldbury Garage was transferred to WMPTE. But by this time both had moved on and their replacements 207, 247 and seen here 221 became regulars for a number of years. Also new came later N-Reg 340 and 360. Unlike the Fleetline which was not very 'opo friendly' the Leopards were always popular.

Thursday, 6 October 2011

National Express C182 RVV at Digbeth

Despite the nameNational Express never really wanted to own any of it's coaches but had to run one or two to have an operators licence. The first of these were a pair of unusual Caetano bodied Leyland Tigers, one of which was seen about to depart for Manchester from below the firms HQ which was at Digbeth.

Monday, 3 October 2011

Art Students chatting in Saint Gallen

As I've mentioned before pictures of buses and girls together are often loosely called a Jowitt. But of course like all good photographers he had a style all of his own and I have to admit many of my views have that 'Jowitt Feel'. This one from Switzerland is typical with the girls taking centre stage in this softly lit street scene with lots of reminders that for us Brit's makes it seem somewhere slightly more exotic and romantic. And there just as you start to daydream you see a strange trolleybus perhaps heading to the next shot!

Chaserider & Happy Days Buses in Stafford

I was never a big fan of the London Transport DMS which looked rather plain  boxy and unimaginative and especially when compared to the modern rounded designs that came from builder's like Alexander. However in hindsight I'm sure some of the reason for this was that they were far better constructed than some of the more attractive when new 'fair maidens' particularly from East Lancs and Northern Counties. No doubt this helped endear the to all the operator's who said 'thank you very much' when LT threw them to one side. OUC 35R even found it's way to Happy Days of Woodseaves.