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Pioneers And Progress In Our Latest Podcast

Updated: May 7

Episode 2 of The Bus Inspectors podcast has dropped (8pm on 4 May), with an update on our project to grade the nation's 10,000 historic buses and coaches and celebrating UK bus preservation in general.

Episode Two - Old Barns to Brooklands follows the human story of bus preservation, from the pioneers of the 1950s who often kept their buses in old barns, to today's welcoming transport museums - not forgetting those collections who are still on the journey to their 'forever home'.

Leon Daniels OBE, well-known transport executive and Chairman of the London Bus Museum, explains how the pioneers of preservation put their own houses and family on the line in order to provide homes for their buses. Leon recalls the move from the old aircraft hangar that became Cobham Bus Museum to the present purpose-built facility at Brooklands, where the buses are now set in a wider transport context with full public access and first-class engineering facilities.

We also hear from Dan Shears, son of the late Colin Shears who founded the West of England Transport Collection, who recounts how his father pursued and bought Exeter Corporation No. 66, his first bus, when only just out of school - from a dealer in a back-street of Exeter. Plus, pioneeer preservationist Michael Dryhurst reveals the story behind what is largely accepted to be the UK's first privately preserved bus, as well as his own first vehicle, a 1939 AEC Regent, former Brighton Corporation No. 66 (FUF 66).

Following the launch of The Bus Inspectors' podcast series in February, the National Association of Road Transport Museums has received numerous applications from museums and collections who are keen to join and become part of The Bus Inspectors' grading project.

Episode 2 features an update on the project so far, which has seen early grading visits to museums in the East Midlands, South East and North West. The podcast snoops a session in Leicester, where representatives of the Leicester Transport Heritage Trust have been working closely with the 'inspectors' to interpret vehicles in their magnificent collection and record what makes each one special.

You can listen to the podcast here, or download from all the main podcast sources (search "The Bus Inspectors Podcast").

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