1963 Midland Red coach tour leaflet.

Bus and Coach operations, and timetables for The Birmingham and Midland Motor Omnibus Company Limited (BMMO — Midland "Red" Motor Services).
TimBrown
Posts: 886
Joined: 05:59 Monday 4th July 2016
Location: Worcester

1963 Midland Red coach tour leaflet.

Post by TimBrown » 16:38 Wednesday 13th February 2019

I am having a sort out and discovered this 55 year old leaflet amongst my collection which may be of interest.

For those who never had to deal with imperial £. s. d, there used to be 12 pennies to the shilling and 20 shillings to the pound £. Therefore 16/- was 16 shillings or 80p in decimal and 7/6 was 7 shillings and 6 pence or 37.5p in decimal for example. Having used both systems, I find decimal much easier to use and far more logical!

Typical transport from Worcester or Malvern garage would be;
C1; 3321, 3328 or 3331.
C4 4250.
C5 4781 or 4821 and occasionally S15 4646.
Midland Red coach trips 1963 001.jpg
Midland Red coach trips 1963 002.jpg

chason
Posts: 242
Joined: 14:24 Friday 22nd July 2016
Location: Bromsgrove

Re: 1963 Midland Red coach tour leaflet.

Post by chason » 19:37 Wednesday 13th February 2019

Thanks Tim for this most interesting piece of memorabilia. I had forgotten how extensive the day tour programme was but of course far fewer families had access to a car and for most of us, if we wanted a day out the coach or train was the only way.

I have mentioned before the Sunday evening tour (sometimes billed as a mystery trip), at least that from Malvern usually in 3340 or later 4781, was invariably to Gloucester, the only mystery being which of three or four different routes to the same pub there would it take. Most of the passengers were regulars and I believe that any other destination would provoke a hostile reaction.

The tours would be driven by one the senior bus drivers who was provided with a long white linen coach drivers coat and a white cover for his cap (as indeed were the X43/4 motorway express drivers, at least in the early days).

My most memorable day trip by coach was in the mid 195O's to Barmouth in an ONC coach, the driver being very apologetic that such an old coach was provided but all the newer ones were required for the Three Counties Show, on at the same time. All went well until nearing Barmouth when climbing a long hill in a very low gear, the coach filled with smoke and a strong smell of burning. The driver stopped for about 10 minutes to let it cool down and the smoke to subside and declared it safe to continue. I am not sure we were convinced but we had no further problems. My mother who was not a good passenger anyway enquired at Barmouth railway station to see if we could get a train home but evidently there wasn't so we returned on the coach.

chason
Posts: 242
Joined: 14:24 Friday 22nd July 2016
Location: Bromsgrove

Re: 1963 Midland Red coach tour leaflet.

Post by chason » 23:06 Wednesday 13th February 2019

chason wrote:
19:37 Wednesday 13th February 2019
Thanks Tim for this most interesting piece of memorabilia. I had forgotten how extensive the day tour programme was but of course far fewer families had access to a car and for most of us, if we wanted a day out the coach or train was the only way.

I have mentioned before the Sunday evening tour (sometimes billed as a mystery trip), at least that from Malvern usually in 3340 or later 4781, was invariably to Gloucester, the only mystery being which of three or four different routes to the same pub there would it take. Most of the passengers were regulars and I believe that any other destination would provoke a hostile reaction.

The tours would be driven by one of the senior bus drivers who was provided with a long white linen coach drivers coat and a white cover for his cap (as indeed were the X43/4 motorway express drivers, at least in the early days).

My most memorable day trip by coach was in the mid 195O's to Barmouth in an ONC coach, the driver being very apologetic that such an old coach was provided but all the newer ones were required for the Three Counties Show, on at the same time. All went well until nearing Barmouth when climbing a long hill in a very low gear, the coach filled with smoke and a strong smell of burning. The driver stopped for about 10 minutes to let it cool down and the smoke to subside and declared it safe to continue. I am not sure we were convinced but we had no further problems. My mother who was not a good passenger anyway enquired at Barmouth railway station to see if we could get a train home but evidently there wasn't so we returned on the coach.

TimBrown
Posts: 886
Joined: 05:59 Monday 4th July 2016
Location: Worcester

Re: 1963 Midland Red coach tour leaflet.

Post by TimBrown » 16:11 Thursday 14th February 2019

chason wrote:
19:37 Wednesday 13th February 2019

My most memorable day trip by coach was in the mid 195O's to Barmouth in an ONC coach, the driver being very apologetic that such an old coach was provided but all the newer ones were required for the Three Counties Show, on at the same time. All went well until nearing Barmouth when climbing a long hill in a very low gear, the coach filled with smoke and a strong smell of burning. The driver stopped for about 10 minutes to let it cool down and the smoke to subside and declared it safe to continue. I am not sure we were convinced but we had no further problems. My mother who was not a good passenger anyway enquired at Barmouth railway station to see if we could get a train home but evidently there wasn't so we returned on the coach.
I only ever had one journey on an ONC with a Sunday School trip to Stratford-upon-Avon which was a very sedate affair, I don't think we exceeded 35 MPH anywhere. By contrast nine of these coaches were loaned to Black and White Motorways of Cheltenham for the Summer season of 1959 and possibly 1960, and I have distinct memory of two roaring up Rose Bank on the A38 from Worcester direction into Fernhill Heath with plenty of exhaust smoke, hitting the governors in fourth as they passed me at about 40 MPH then changing up into overdrive and accelerating hard towards Droitwich on Associated Motorways front line long distance connecting services. My guess would be that those drivers used the 55 to 60 MPH top speed wherever possible - I could only watch in awe of those 20 year old coaches.

I have a very distant and vague memory, when knee high to a grasshopper, of a Midland Red coach day trip to Aberystwyth which must have been on an OLR as there was a step in the window line midway along the coach; I don't remember any overheating problems on that trip, but if it was an OLR they had Leyland 7.4 litre diesel engines fitted to replace the original petrol engines - apparently the BMMO 8 litre was too long to fit the restricted chassis space.

chason
Posts: 242
Joined: 14:24 Friday 22nd July 2016
Location: Bromsgrove

Re: 1963 Midland Red coach tour leaflet.

Post by chason » 08:59 Friday 15th February 2019

I think my initial recollection about the Gloucester mystery trips was probably a little hazy so far as the vehicle used was concerned. As I imagine the MN coach at that time would probably have been used on a day tour, the evening trip was more usually entrusted to one of MN's dual purpose saloons (S13's 3931 or 3972) or later on an S15 or even an S22 perhaps, the numbers of which I don't recall.

It certainly sounds as though three different vehicles were used on the Sunday evening tours as they all are shown as departing from Droitwich, Worcester and Great Malvern at the same time.

TimBrown
Posts: 886
Joined: 05:59 Monday 4th July 2016
Location: Worcester

Re: 1963 Midland Red coach tour leaflet.

Post by TimBrown » 18:00 Friday 15th February 2019

TimBrown wrote:
16:11 Thursday 14th February 2019

I have a very distant and vague memory, when knee high to a grasshopper, of a Midland Red coach day trip to Aberystwyth which must have been on an OLR as there was a step in the window line midway along the coach; I don't remember any overheating problems on that trip, but if it was an OLR they had Leyland 7.4 litre diesel engines fitted to replace the original petrol engines - apparently the BMMO 8 litre was too long to fit the restricted chassis space.
The coach mentioned above was an SLR not OLR, hope that didn't cause too many double-takes!

TimBrown
Posts: 886
Joined: 05:59 Monday 4th July 2016
Location: Worcester

Re: 1963 Midland Red coach tour leaflet.

Post by TimBrown » 15:38 Thursday 21st February 2019

I have found another Day Tour leaflet for week commencing Saturday 29th June 1963.
Day Tours 29 June 1963 001.jpg
Day Tours 29 June 1963 002.jpg
I wonder where the Evening Circular Tour on M5 Motorway actually went, the Motorway had only been open for about 12 months; can't recall how far to the South it covered, but Lydiate Ash was the Northernmost end.

chason
Posts: 242
Joined: 14:24 Friday 22nd July 2016
Location: Bromsgrove

Re: 1963 Midland Red coach tour leaflet.

Post by chason » 14:05 Friday 22nd February 2019

Not sure if the date fits but certainly around that time the southern end of the M5 was the junction with the M50. Traffic intending to go further South had to go on to the M50 and leave at junction 1 on to the A38. Not surprisingly, until the M5 was further extended, particularly on summer Saturdays, this caused a huge bottleneck in Tewkesbury with long tailbacks often stretching back on to the M50. This often played havoc with the timekeeping of the Associated Motorway and Yelloway departures at Cheltenham coach station as all except for loaded duplicates couldn't leave until all the coaches from the north had arrived. It was not uncommon for the 2.30 departures to be delayed for an hour or more.

MattW
Posts: 838
Joined: 20:42 Sunday 3rd July 2016
Location: Cornwall

Re: 1963 Midland Red coach tour leaflet.

Post by MattW » 18:33 Friday 22nd February 2019

It always amazes me that there was ever a time when you could go on a trip on a motorway just for fun!

TimBrown
Posts: 886
Joined: 05:59 Monday 4th July 2016
Location: Worcester

Re: 1963 Midland Red coach tour leaflet.

Post by TimBrown » 19:30 Friday 22nd February 2019

MattW wrote:
18:33 Friday 22nd February 2019
It always amazes me that there was ever a time when you could go on a trip on a motorway just for fun!
Motorway journeys today are a heavy chore, but back in 1963 it was a bit special because Worcester garage had three Motorway coaches for the X44 Motorway. As a teenager it was an afternoon treat to take a ride to Birmingham and back on a CM5. These coaches were turbocharged and had straight through exhaust systems which gave a deep burble and whistling note which rose to a full-throated roar at maximum revs. In those days the service used the Whittington slip road and it wasn't unusual to be doing 80 MPH under Warndon flyover and even more on the downhill section by Droitwich. From a safety angle we never realised the risks and the lack of crash barriers in what was only a dual carriageway. Many motorists pulled out with little warning, not expected a coach to be moving so fast, but In an emergency CM5s had excellent brakes with discs all round, they looked very distinctive too - wish one had made it into preservation!

I never went on an evening M5 Circular and don't know what was allocated for the job. I have been a passenger on a D7 (4742) on a bank holiday extra from Birmingham to Worcester and timed it at 42 MPH, on another occasion an S15 (4603) managed to average 52 MPH over a mile. As reported elsewhere, at a much later date I took a number of different Nationals on service as they were booked for the Saturday 18-05 X44 departure from Newport Street to Birmingham in the mid 1980s, until the fleet of Nats was fitted with horrible Bandag retread tyres and banned from Motorway use.

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