Kennils K 29 Nov 2017 The story as told to me by an ex Daimler apprentice pre 2nd WW was that ROF Birtley during WW1 received lorry cab and Chassis and R.O.F. then under Ministry contract put various bodies on , and sent them off mainly to Ports in Glasgow ,Liverpool, the Thames to go to the front line After Hostilities they would end up back at Birtley for R.O.F. to sell them on the open market some were sold as lorries to the haulage people but others as a chassis to bus operators Northern General Transport had workshops in Gateshead not far from?? and they then bodied them as single and double deckers.
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United Bus Company began operations on April 4th 1912 with 2 buses running a service from Lowestoft to the Southwold area. Included in the list of Directors was Ernest Boyd Hutchinson who later became Managing Director. In October 1912 the fleet moved to a new depot at Cockton Hill in Bishop Auckland. The depot was modernised and extended but closed in February 2010 and was still there in 2014, although boarded up and fenced off. One reason for the move to Bishop Auckland was that Lowestoft was considered seasonal and there were coal mines in County Durham (this is not a confirmed fact) which needed transport. The bus in the photograph appears to be 118 (LU8161) -as shown on Page 31 in the book United Automobile Services, Part 1 The Fleet 1912-1941,Venture Publications 2001. The bus was a War Department AEC, acquired from London General Omnibus Co in 1919. It was one of the vehicles brought back to the UK from France and pressed into service to cover the desperate need for "New" buses. The bus was fitted with a United built bus body c1921. A photograph of a similar bus although boarded up appears in the book United 80 years of Service Autobus publications 1992 on page 8, and on page 10 a copy of an advert by AEC in a trade press publication showing a similar bus for sale for £550 from United in Bishop Auckland (United were agents selling AEC Buses and Lorrie). I hope the above is of use and if you want further information on buses try the Omnibus Society www.omnibussoc.org
pre WW1. Wagon converted to a bus? Solid tyres.Perhaps a water tank on the running board. The route board on the side would be reversed for the return journey