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Celebrating the products of AEC Southall Ltd, most famous as builder of London's buses.

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PostPosted: Sat May 12, 2012 9:24 am 
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Time, I thought, to restart what was a very enjoyable thread, with many contributions, submitted over a number of years, by many different people with a shared love for these wonderful and much misunderstood buses. I'll start with the latest pictures of the ongoing restoration of SMS97 which will be returning to the streets of London very soon. Do please enjoy these pictures of her nearing completion on the journey to full restoration. I would like to thank all those people associated with this project, in particular my good friends at The Bromley Bus Preservation Group, to which SMS97 is a valued member of this expanding fleet of rear engined classics. Thanks got to the team at Reliance Bus Works who have shown, not only a high level of craftmanship and technical skill, but also a great deal of care and attention for a type that they deeply admire and respect. Please enjoy, do start to add comments and your own pictures to this forum and as 97 develops I'll add more. :D :D
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File comment: A very rare opportunity to see two London Swifts, yes I know one is a Merlin, but lets not split hairs, side by side at Reliance Bus Works. MBS444 will undergo an extensive restoration and The Bromley Bus Presrvation Group look forward to running these two superb machines together in the not too distant future.
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PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2012 5:48 pm 
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Some more pictures to tempt you enthusiasts out there into commenting, adding your own memories and pictures. Look here for announcements of the plans for 97's triumphant return to the capital, times dates and venues where you can see her, ride on her etc. She will be visiting various LT garages where Swifts once had a prescence, where these garages still exist and visiting sites where once they stood, such as Elmers End (ED) the very garage that issued forth my first SMS experience in 1970. Here are a few teasers of 97 as an ED bus in 2010, prior to her heading to Reliance Bus Works to complete the return to her London Transport glory days !!!!!!!!!!!


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PostPosted: Fri May 25, 2012 12:21 pm 
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I was there at the beginning! Had a drive of the prototype chassis round Chiswick - it seemed very flexible. Was then involved in problem recognition and solving during early Red Arrow days. Too old for that sort of thing now!
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 29, 2012 12:07 pm 
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I remember these being introduced on the E1, E2, E3 routes in Ealing when I was a kid. There seemed to be a new type of ticket machine in them every week and I have vivid memories of at least one "Thermal Incident" causing everyone to abandon the bus.


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 29, 2012 8:46 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2012 7:11 am
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I remember them being introduced as the new 195 route when I was a kid in the 70s in Hayes Middlesex. Thought they were fantastic. They had an automatic turnstyle machine you could buy your ticket from if you went through the right-hand door, but it wasn't long before they didn't work any more.

The only other single-decker I had ever seen was what I thought was a very old fashioned looking bus on the 204 route (Regal IVs I believe.)


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