Monday, 25 July 2011

411's day out

411 leaves Marton Mere for Blackpool
411 was the last body built by Eastern Coach Works before its closure by Leyland in January 1987 and is thus a significant vehicle. It was delivered to Plumstead as the last of 260 Olympians for London Buses as L263. It ran for their Selkent division along with three sisters on 'Selkent Express' service 177. Originally D263FUL it became VLT9 in the early 1990s and D367JJD in 1995. Selkent was privatised by sale to Stagecoach. It was sold via Ensign to Blackburn Transport as its 30 in October 2000. Ensign converted it to single door (H42/30F) having been new as DPH42/26F. It lost its coach seats during its London career. 
411 on Woodside Drive on its way to Marton Mere
Olive Green and Ivory website shows its history with Blackburn which included a repaint into their schools livery. After the sale of Blackburn to Transdev in January 2007, 30 was one of seven Olympians to pass with Blackburn's Blackpool outstation to Blackpool Transport. For a period Blackburn applied a fixed vinyl destination to 30 but they later replaced it with a roller blind with dot matrix numbers from a withdrawn Titan.

Blackpool Zoo
It arrived at Rigby Road in August 2007 and initially ran in Blackburn green and yellow spending time at the outstation (Jackson's Burton Road) and Rigby Road. Numbered 411 it received Line 1 orange and yellow in August 2008. It was almost exclusively used on school services losing its dot matrix number blind for a standard three track roller number blind during 2010, losing its restrictive Blackburn blind in the process. Today its duty on service 20 was probably its first full duty on local service work, having previously only been reported on a couple of route 1 dupes and schools work. 411 is not the only London Olympian in the Blackpool fleet as former L173, 218, 257 and 258 are present in open top form and sisters L149, 213 and 244 were also previously used on City Sightseeing work.

411 at Pontins in May 2008 providing a shuttle service to a Schools Football competition in Lytham. It retains Blackburn colours.

413 kept 411 company on route 20. This nearside shot shows the dual door configuration on a surprisingly quite Preston New Road
Meanwhile 377 continued the recent run of unusual buses on route 5