The other vehicles
On this page: DL 9706 GHV 69N HCZ 1850
Current status: Undergoing restoration.
Twenty-three Dennis Lancets (later known as the Mk 1 model) were built in Guildford for the Southern Vectis Omnibus Company between 1934 and 1936. Some were bodied by Eastern Counties in Lowestoft whilst the remainder had bodies built by Harrington of Hove, Sussex. This particular example was one of a batch of twelve bodied by Harrington, and was first registered on July 1st 1935.
The chassis is numbered 170955 and is powered by a 5.7 litre petrol engine through a four-speed sliding-mesh gearbox. The body was single-deck with rear entrance and seated thirty six passengers. Southern Vectis numbered the vehicle 516 in their fleet, although at that time fleet numbers were rarely referred to.
DL 9706 was one of a number of Dennis Lancets to be requisitioned by the War Department from Southern Vectis in April 1941. In July 1943, 516 was repurchased by the company, but it was returned in such poor condition that it was (along with five others) sent to Eastern Coach Works at Irthlingborough, Northamptonshire for rebodying in 1944. As these were new bodies on old chassis, full austerity standards were not applied, and the new ECW Series 1 thirty-five seat bodies on these vehicles had rear entrances. The body fitted to DL 9706 was numbered 8356 by ECW.
DL 9706 returned to passenger service, working alongside the rest of the class until withdrawal in 1952. It was sold to Joliffe, a dealer based in Somerton, Cowes in 1953.
By 1957, DL 9706 had been purchased by the building contractors Cheek Brothers (who are now part of Bardon Vectis) based at St. George's Down, Newport. They converted it to a mobile workshop and mess room, towing it from building site to building site. At some time, all windows were removed and panelled over.
The bus was sold in July 1965 to J A Golding, of Wellow, Isle of Wight who used it as a static workshop. It was towed to his premises by traction engine. In 1974 it was built into a shed (forming part of one wall) constructed to house a collection of preserved vehicles.
It was purchased by ourselves for preservation in November 1989, and was transported to the mainland (probably for the first time since 1944) during December. Initial work focussed on the mechanical aspects.
Views of restoration progress
Current status: Not in use
This Daimler Fleetline CRL6 entered service with London Transport in March 1975, a 71-seat double decker bodied by Metr0-Cammell-Weymann with front entrance andcentre exit. Although designed to be used as a one-man operated bus, this example always ran with a conductor in London Transport service.
After just over seven years service, the bus was withdrawn in 1982 and sold in January of the following year. Subsequently, it spent periods operating for Ensign on local routes in East London. Ensignbus operations were later with Front Runner Buses, and this vehicle was the last of the type in service with them. It was sold to Blue Traingle in April 1992, with whom it performed a number of duties, including sightseeing tours in London and local service operation in Newhaven.
Around 1997 it was purchased by Whipsnade Wildlife Animal Park for internal services, where it operated until 2001.
Photograph 16/6/01, copyright © Nigel Eadon-Clarke
It was purchased by ourselves in May 2002, but was unfortunately damaged on the way "home" by a large European articulated lorry reversing into it in Dunstable. The vehicle is not currently in use.
<-- scrapped 7/09 Wigley -->
This French Citroën HZ72 van is one of the 473,289 to be built between 1947 and 1982 in France, Belgium and Holland.
This particular example was built in 1977, and was registered 8147 RV 67. It was imported to the UK in 1993 and given the UK registration YKO 475S. In 2001, it was re-registered HZC 1850.
It was purchased by Gill & John Hinson in November 2001 and serves both as an interesting historic vehicle and as useful occasional transport for bus spares.
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