Independent Transport Videos are proud to present this archive video presentation of the iconic AEC Routemaster bus running in service with three major operators in northern England. The video was shot by transport photographer Malcolm King in the late 1980’s and features the Routemasters running in service with Blackpool Transport, Burnley & Pendle and Cumberland Motor Services.
We start this programme in the seaside town of Blackpool. It was in January 1986 that Blackpool Transport evaluated a Leyland engined Routemaster, and it was from there that a small fleet of Routemasters was built up to operate services 12 and 55, and later the 14 and 22/ 22A. The livery chosen was the pre-war livery of red and white with lining out which complimented the lines of the Routemaster very well. Malcolm visited Blackpool on a number of occasions to capture them in action, running along the seafront and in St Annes to name but two locations. We also see other Routemasters attending a rally on the promenade as well as the contemporary bus fleet in action, and not forgetting the trams!
Our second Routemaster fleet is Burnley & Pendle Transport. Having evaluated Blackpool’s RM1735 (735 DYE) in February 1988, Burnley & Pendle built up an initial fleet of five Routemasters. They were branded “EastEnders” after the popular BBC television series. Each bus was given a name after a character in the series. Painted in a smart dark red and cream livery the Routemasters operated on the 19, 23 and 25 services, although initially some of them ran in their former London Buses colours. Malcolm caught up with them in both Burnley and Colne, as well as some ‘out of town’ locations – so different from the streets of London they had been used to.
The final location on this programme is Carlisle, to see the Routemasters operating with Cumberland Motor Services, which had just been taken over by Stagecoach. Routemasters commenced operations here in October 1987 when eight vehicles were obtained for the 61 service. They later ran on the 60A and 61A services. Six of the Routemasters were obtained from Kelvin Scottish, and the other two direct from London Buses. They were finished in a livery of CMS red with a vertical and diagonal caramel stripe. Malcolm filmed the buses at various locations, from the housing estates to the city centre during the day and early evening.
So take your seat and enjoy this nostalgic video presentation featuring the iconic Routemaster running in service many miles away for its natural home in London!
Produced by - Independent Transport Videos
Running time - 61 minutes
Format - 16:9 Widescreen
Release date - 2014