Tinkers Park buses on tour

CAP 229, RF & RTSince the Claude Jessett trust was formed in 2003 several important new items have been added to the collection based at Tinkers Park these include two double deck buses which, like other vehicles in the collection, are often shown off to the public as working examples of our transport heritage. The buses are an ex London Transport RT double decker ( The original big red bus as seen in the film Summer Holiday starring Cliffe Richard) and an ex Brighton Hove and District Bristol K type convertible open topper dating from 1940. This was the archetypal seaside bus and used to run a regular Service along the seafront  from Rottingdean, through Brighton and on to Hove. Both vehicles were donated to the trust by their previous owners who wanted to see them go to a good home where they would be enjoyed by enthusiasts and the general public.

On Saturday April 1st both buses, went to the Detling historic transport rally held at the Kent County showground near Maidstone. They were part of  a show displaying all types of classic and vintage transport, including almost 100 buses dating from the 1930’s to the present day. The Tinkers Park contingent was kept busy all day giving the public free rides around the showground stopping at all  the major display areas thus affording  superb views of all  the exhibits on the large site. In addition the Park’s portable miniature railway, with a real steam locomotive ‘Tom Rolt’ was giving rides next to one of the exhibition halls raising money for The Claude Jessett Trust.

R. Brown driving Tom Rolt on loan for the day from Guy. Photo’ G. Osborne

The buses were crewed entirely by Tinkers Park volunteers who are qualified PCV drivers. The open topper was particularly popular, even though the weather was a bit chilly at times, and full loadings were encountered all along the route, in fact some people waited for several buses to pass just so they could get on the old open top bus. There will be a chance for another free ride on the buses at the Eastbourne bus running day on July 2nd and at this years ‘Model Railways Plus’ event to be held at Tinkers Park on August the 5th and 6th.  For some folks  a ride on a bus with a conductor and an open platform bring back fond memories of their youth and others just like the feeling of the wind in their hair as they ride the open topper, but in any case it will be a case of “Hold very tight please” DING, DING!