An unusual posting for Shipsnostalgia!

vitalspark
11th August 2008, 19:27
This somewhat eccentric posting was prompted by a visit to the gallery (ferries), where neilking has posted a picture of MacBrayne's Lochnevis at Fort William. It provoked much discussion, not so much about Lochnevis, but about the fine assemblage of MacBrayne's buses on the pier.

Well, on the 8th June 2008, I was enjoying lunch at the Tayvallich Inn when these two buses drew up outside. I felt I was in a time warp. It must have been fifty years since I saw one of these.
The Inn emptied as people rushed outside to photograph them. Clearly they strike a nostalgic chord in people, and it seems that some tour operator has latched onto this, and is running West Highland tours using these delightful vehicles.

Best wishes,
Dave

Bruce Carson
11th August 2008, 19:39
Bedford?

There must be many members who remember these distinctive vehicles.
Nostalgia, indeed.

Bruce

vitalspark
11th August 2008, 20:07
Bedford?

There must be many members who remember these distinctive vehicles.
Nostalgia, indeed.

Bruce

Bedfords indeed, Bruce

Dave

GEORDIE LAD
11th August 2008, 20:09
Definitely Bedford.What a great slice from earlier times.Thanks...Doug

Peter4447
11th August 2008, 21:04
Fascinating stuff.
There used to be a rhyme about MacBraynes and hold they had on the ferry services - can anybody point me to a copy of the words please?
Many thanks
Peter(Smoke)

bert thompson
11th August 2008, 21:18
Lovely remembrance of times past
Think those buses are still in operation in Malta (similar ones)
Thanks
Bert.

Ian6
11th August 2008, 21:33
Hi
Lovely pictures that take you back 50 years or more, in my case to Western National Buses in Somerset and North Devon.

Another source of living nostalgia is the bus fleet still operating in Malta. When they applied to join the EU it was a condition of entry that their quaint, bald tyred, buses from pre-war two be updated. Another condition related to the tendancy to shoot or trap any bird in sight. Obviously Malta's mentor on EU membership was Italy rather then their old colonial friends the UK.

A few new buses are around but the terminus outside Valletta remains a living museum. The EU threatens action concerning the birds. My wife and I have been to Malta every year for a decade now. We have never been on a bus with a speedometer that worked - most obviously have come from some other vehicle. Bus makes claim strange pedigrees like AEC-Bedford or Ford-Vauxhall.

A little eccentric behaviour helps to counter act our H&S, politically correct and EU obedient ways. Long may it live.

Ian

Bruce Carson
11th August 2008, 21:36
Fascinating stuff.
There used to be a rhyme about MacBraynes and hold they had on the ferry services - can anybody point me to a copy of the words please?
Many thanks
Peter(Smoke)


Peter, you'll find it under the aforementioned picture of the 'Lochnevis' in the Gallery, uploaded by Neil King

The Earth belongs unto the Lord

And all that it contains

Except the Kyles and the Western Isles

And they are all MacBrayne's.


http://www.shipsnostalgia.com/gallery/showphoto.php?photo=129912

Bruce

John Williams 56-65
11th August 2008, 21:48
I seem to remember seeing those buses nearly fifty years ago during our Scottish national Trust Cruises. Same colours as the ferrys` if I`m not mistaken.

Peter4447
11th August 2008, 23:24
Peter, you'll find it under the aforementioned picture of the 'Lochnevis' in the Gallery, uploaded by Neil King

The Earth belongs unto the Lord

And all that it contains

Except the Kyles and the Western Isles

And they are all MacBrayne's.


http://www.shipsnostalgia.com/gallery/showphoto.php?photo=129912

Bruce

Many thanks for that Bruce
Peter(Thumb)

billyboy
12th August 2008, 08:21
Bedford OB. 6 cylinder petrol engines. (gas guzzlers)
No synchromesh in the 4 speed gearbox and heavy steering. In later days the king pin bushes were changed to a different type with thrust rings to lighten the steering a bit.
The preserved ones still have the petrol engine. though i did hear that some in their latter days were converted to a Bedford 330 diesel.
Fun to drive on the flat, but, show them a hill and they quickly teach you how to find 1st gear...LOl

tugmistress
16th August 2008, 17:57
Hi
Lovely pictures that take you back 50 years or more, in my case to Western National Buses in Somerset and North Devon.

Another source of living nostalgia is the bus fleet still operating in Malta. When they applied to join the EU it was a condition of entry that their quaint, bald tyred, buses from pre-war two be updated. Another condition related to the tendancy to shoot or trap any bird in sight. Obviously Malta's mentor on EU membership was Italy rather then their old colonial friends the UK.

A few new buses are around but the terminus outside Valletta remains a living museum. The EU threatens action concerning the birds. My wife and I have been to Malta every year for a decade now. We have never been on a bus with a speedometer that worked - most obviously have come from some other vehicle. Bus makes claim strange pedigrees like AEC-Bedford or Ford-Vauxhall.

A little eccentric behaviour helps to counter act our H&S, politically correct and EU obedient ways. Long may it live.

Ian

I've not been in Malta for over 16 years now, but i remember riding round the island in these buses, no windows, seats if you were lucky, patches of floor missing even in one or two of them :) great memories (also remember seeing a car once without door or seats, the driver was sat on a stool lol).

billyboy
20th August 2008, 05:39
I believe this was known as an early form of Air conditioning Tug mistress...LOL

Orestes
20th August 2008, 06:15
What memories. I used to travel on the same model buses from Inverness to Drumnadrochit,where I lived,and sometimes to Fort Augustus in the 50's.They were really quite basic, and slow. The 13 miles from Inverness to Drumnadrochit seemed to take ages. They were also very draughty and bitterly cold in the winter.

vitalspark
20th August 2008, 11:34
What memories. I used to travel on the same model buses from Inverness to Drumnadrochit,where I lived,and sometimes to Fort Augustus in the 50's.They were really quite basic, and slow. The 13 miles from Inverness to Drumnadrochit seemed to take ages. They were also very draughty and bitterly cold in the winter.

Thank you, Orestes, for that personal recollection. These old buses seem to have struck a responsive chord in people. Since they were so much a part of MacBrayne's services to the Highlands and Islands, perhaps they are not TOO out of place in Shipsnostalgia!

Best wishes,
Dave

Rob.Norrie
20th August 2008, 12:42
The bus postings,
Few years ago, I seen a few of them, sitting at Hunters Quay, near Dunoon.
Must have been on tour. I took few photos, sorry never thought to put them here, thinking, they are buses, not ships.
Will find them and post.
Yes it was strange to see them, nice old buses, but yes, cold and noisey, they do not meet todays standards of comfort.
Regards.
Rob

Orestes
21st August 2008, 07:27
Yes maybe buses are not part of ship nostalgia, however they were part of the MacBrayne empire which kept the Highlands and Islands open to the rest of the world!Para Handy mentions the company in quite a few of his stories, and really their vessels were looked on as greyhounds of the ocean in the late 1800's and early 1900's.
Man if Dougie was here he would tell you himself!!!!

JimC
22nd August 2008, 14:45
This somewhat eccentric posting was prompted by a visit to the gallery (ferries), where neilking has posted a picture of MacBrayne's Lochnevis at Fort William. It provoked much discussion, not so much about Lochnevis, but about the fine assemblage of MacBrayne's buses on the pier.

Well, on the 8th June 2008, I was enjoying lunch at the Tayvallich Inn when these two buses drew up outside. I felt I was in a time warp. It must have been fifty years since I saw one of these.
The Inn emptied as people rushed outside to photograph them. Clearly they strike a nostalgic chord in people, and it seems that some tour operator has latched onto this, and is running West Highland tours using these delightful vehicles.

Best wishes,
Dave

Hi Dave!

Gosh! what happy memories you evoked with your pictures.

I remember the Tayvallich Inn when it was a Shell garage. I spent many a happy year (and fiver in that pub when it became one) in that area. The buses are resurrected every summer and attend things like the Tarbert Music Festival, Tarbert Scottish Series, Mid-Argyll Show and Ardrishaig Gala to mention but a few. ( I'll post the plug -fee address in due course). I think they 'live' at Ardrishaig over on Loch Fyne side.
I have an old pic somewhere of my auntie and her friends outside the Great Inn at Inveraray just after WW2. Exactly the same bus type is in the back ground. They hired it for a day trip.

As old Bob Hope used to sing 'Thanks for the memory'.

Jim

Don Matheson
22nd August 2008, 15:43
Since I mentioned the buses on the pier at Fort William in Neils original post it seems to have opened the floodgates.
This I am sure is the same bus that ran between Portree and Staffin in Skye and as such was the chariot used to get me to my Grandparents home every summer for many years. Donald the driver was like a god when he collected us from the Loch Nevis but not so popular when he passed the house to take us home at summers end.
Remember it carried everything and the bus horn would bring people out to the bus to collect parcels etc. Remember chickens and dogs on the bus and have a feeling once there was a sheep. More like a community service than a modern bus and very much an essential service on the islands.
Don

vitalspark
22nd August 2008, 17:15
Since I mentioned the buses on the pier at Fort William in Neils original post it seems to have opened the floodgates.
This I am sure is the same bus that ran between Portree and Staffin in Skye and as such was the chariot used to get me to my Grandparents home every summer for many years. Donald the driver was like a god when he collected us from the Loch Nevis but not so popular when he passed the house to take us home at summers end.
Remember it carried everything and the bus horn would bring people out to the bus to collect parcels etc. Remember chickens and dogs on the bus and have a feeling once there was a sheep. More like a community service than a modern bus and very much an essential service on the islands.
Don

Fabulous memories, Don, and thank you. But there are TWO buses in my pics - KGD903 & KGD904. I don't suppose you remember the number of your bus - and if it ran in Skye, it probably had a different registration. My bus memories tend to be of Arran.....Lennox , Ribbeck, McMillan, Stewart, Weir, Gordon, Bannatyne et al. Very much the same kind of buses, all meeting the ferry, and handily colour-coded so that you knew which bus to get on!

Best wishes,
Dave

John N MacDonald
26th August 2008, 15:04
I remember Donald MacPherson the driver of the Staffin bus well. The Staffin bus wasn't the same as the rest of the Skye fleet as it had a large compartment at the rear which I believe was because it was a mail bus.
I have many memories of the buses as I had to get one from Braes to School in Portree for 11 years of my life>(Thumb)

Don Matheson
26th August 2008, 15:31
John
I thought the Staffin bus had a big compartment at the back because of the amount of luggage we took on holiday. Two adults and us four kids needed a lot of gear. I am sure you are right as it was the mail bus and Donald was a legend, he would stop his bus and wait for someone to walk down to collect their parcel or goods from the shop. Great guy and the photos of the Loch Nevis and the buses brought it all flooding back. Bet its got you thinking of your schooldays going from Braes to Portree.
Dave
Sorry I cant remember the bus number of the Staffin Kilmuir bus, to long ago. Presently not sure what I had for breakfast.
Don

John N MacDonald
28th August 2008, 17:37
For anyone interested I have just bought a very interesting book called "Wheels around Skye and Lochalsh" by Robert Grieves and published by Stenlake Publishing Limited, of Catrine, Ayrshire. www.stenlake.co.uk
The book has numerous photos of buses and Lorries from the early days as well as some paddlers and other MacBraynes "Steamers" photos taken around the Skye and Lochalsh area.
Here's one for you Don. I've been reading the book while listening to the Singing Dentist.(Thumb)

John N MacDonald
28th August 2008, 17:42
Don, You didn't need to find the number! If I remember rightly the drivers were always around the buses asking where you were going and anyway you could smell the sheep from Donalds bus.(Jester)

Don Matheson
28th August 2008, 21:25
John
Numbers were unneeded as I am sure Donald used to meet the Loch Nevis at the pier then go up to the square and wait for time to depart. Remember after a day on the train to Mallaig then "Nevis" to Portree the odd good looking sheep does'nt smell so bad.
Will need to look out for the book and by the way I think my father was related to the singing dentist.
Don
PS I think the numbers Dave was talking about was their number plates if you can cast your mind back.

Don Matheson
28th August 2008, 21:28
John
Single track road for twenty miles and only one bus, giving it some thought I dont think numbers were really needed
Don

John N MacDonald
28th August 2008, 22:13
I'll need to ask John Nicolson from Braes if he can remember any Reg.No.'s. John or Johnny Beag as he was better known was with MacBraynes for years. I can't remember how long but he was driving the buses when I went to school in 62 till he retired from Highland about 20 years ago so he's bound to have some good yarns.
If I remember rightly there was some connection between my own father and Alasdair Gillies. My father was brought up in Camusmore, Kilmuir.

robandbarbara
28th August 2008, 23:33
It may be possible to find out more about these interesting vehicles from the web-site - www.bus forum.com
(via Google if that fails).

Don Matheson
29th August 2008, 12:21
John checked with my sister last night we were related to Alasdair through my grandmother. My father was born in Stencholl so I am sure you know where it is. Would be interesting to hear some stories from Jonny Beag as I am sure he will have seen the very best and worst of West Coast roads and driving.
Rob cant find your site so will try a google search later today. Thanks
Perhaps Ships Nostalgia should have a special section set aside for McBraynes ships and buses.
Don

John N MacDonald
29th August 2008, 15:09
I noticed last night that Johnny Beag had helped out with the book and his bus was on the back cover.
I think you'll find that WH Smith or the other good bookshops might stock the buses as Stenlake also publish the books with old photos of towns etc. and their website has a lot of interesting looking books on it.
Aye I know Stenscholl and a few folk from their. I think maybe in the past the Staffin folk went to Kilmuir ceilidhing and vice versa and thats where the connection is>(Jester) (Pint) SLAINTE