Since Crosville Motor Services was re-born in Weston-super-Mare in 2011, it has been passionate about its roots. Owning and operating heritage buses has gone hand in hand with developing a thriving and successful bus and coach operation. The Crosville Heritage Fleet has grown from just three vehicles in 2011 to 14 now (15, if you include our Sentinel Steam Bus 'Elizabeth') and 6 of these entered service with the original Crosville company in North Wales. We have kept many of these cherished vehicles busy on commercial private hire duties from the beginning. Most outings involve a wedding but other bookings have included school proms, birthday surprises and company anniversaries.
If you wish to book a bus for your event, please use the Online Booking Form on the Contact page to make your enquiry. All the buses in our collection are listed below and further photos can be found in the Gallery.
We also like to take some of our buses to local rallies and vintage bus running days and, if you attend these, you will have seen or ridden on our vehicles already.
Restoring and looking after our historic vehicles takes a lot of time (and considerable expense!) and our staff take great care in preparing our buses for their duties. If you live locally and would like to get involved in the restoration and care of our heritage fleet, please get in touch.
We are always on the lookout for drivers and conductors to crew our buses on private hire so, if you have experience with vehicles like ours and would like to get involved, please email or call us. Driving heritage buses such as ours takes special skill, especially as many have constant mesh ('crash') gearboxes. We'd be delighted to give you an assessment drive if you have a full PCV licence + CPC and think you have what it takes!
Two of our part time heritage drivers write blogs about their experiences with historic vehicles such as ours so, to get a flavour of what it's like in the driver's cab, follow these links:
We’re not shy, and enjoy giving pleasure to those who take an interest in our vehicles. However please remember that this is a working garage and is not generally open to the public on an ‘ad hoc’ basis. However, group visits can be arranged at a suitable time – just contact our office first.
Our fine heritage fleet, as you can imagine, requires a lot of care and maintenance to keep it in tip top condition and available for duty. Regular updates will appear on the right of this page under Latest Enthusiast News.
(Listed in order of date built)
Resplendent in Tilling Green livery, tower wagon FAE60 stands proudly outside our garage after the completion of its restoration. This vehicle started life as a standard Bristol L5G 32-seat bus with Bristol Tramways, entering service in 1938. Later rebuilt for departmental use, it was further modified in 1956 to carry the tower mechanism from an earlier utility vehicle. In this form it was used to maintain high level equipment in garages across the Bristol area. It has been in private ownership since 1972. Although it joined Crosville in a presentable condition a look under the surface revealed much rotten woodwork. In recent months almost the entire cab area has been rebuilt and now the wagon, once Fleet No W75 with Bristol Tramways, is now fit for service again. Whether it will ever be used to reach up to the lofty heights of our cavernous garage remains to be seen, however it has already visited some local vintage bus running days.
TD895 (HLJ44) was ordered by Hants & Dorset in 1949 but spent its first year on loan to London Transport to cover a postwar bus shortage. After operating from LT's Amersham garage, it ran for Hants & Dorset until 1966. Due to a shortage of both Bristol and Gardner engines, this bus (along with others built at the same time) was equipped with an AEC 7.7ltr engine which it retains to this day. It has had a number of owners in preservation and is currently nearing the end of an extensive refurbishment programme to original LT condition. It will enter our active heritage fleet later in 2016 and will be available for private hire.
Fleet No KG131 was new to Crosville Motor Services as a bus in 1950 and ran in service, based mostly at the Chester depot, until 1967 when it was converted to a tow bus. It is fitted with a Gardner 5LW engine and 5-speed (overdrive) Bristol gearbox. Sold for scrap in 1973 but purchased by Tony Kershaw of Northwich for preservation. Passed to Quantock Motor Services Ltd, Taunton in 2000 where it was subsequently restored in dual purpose livery. The bus joined Crosville Motor Services Ltd at Weston-super-Mare in 2012 and has been used on private hire duties since then, with a 12-month break for a thorough re-restoration.
New to Crosville Motor Services as its KG118 in 1950 for use in North Wales, later converted to a towing vehicle by the company before entering preservation with Chris Pratt in Weston-super-Mare. Sold to Quantock Motor Services, Taunton, then bought by current owner and completely rebuilt over a three year period. It has been the pride of the Crosville Motor Services heritage fleet since its inception and you can follow its earlier history with our MD's family by going to our How It All Started gallery. Like its sister KFM893, KFM767 is fitted with a Gardner 5LW engine and 5-speed (overdrive) Bristol gearbox but retains its original bus seating and livery.
This bus has the distinction of being the last Bristol L in service with Crosville Motor Services, Chester, being finally withdrawn in 1970. Built in 1952, this Bristol LL6B retains its Bristol AVW 6-cylinder diesel engine and joined two other ex-Crosville Bristol L buses already at Weston-super-Mare in 2011. It has already been restored once and ran in service with Classic Buses Ltd of Four Marks in the late 1980s but now requires extensive work before it joins our active fleet. Some preparatory work has already begun.
Arriving at the Crosville depot at Weston-super-Mare on suspended tow in 2012, this 1952 Bristol KSW6B will shortly be despatched for a thorough overhaul and restoration. It began life with Crosville Motor Services in Chester as its fleet no MW435 and continued in service until withdrawal in 1968. Along with our NFM46, it was in service with Classic Buses Ltd of Four Marks. At some point in later private ownership some damage occurred to its front dome and this will need to be rebuilt as part of the restoration programme. The Bristol AVW engine would not turn over on arrival and subsequent stripdown revealed substantial damage to the pistons and crankshaft. The entire engine will return soon from an extensive (and expensive) rebuild. This bus will join our active heritage fleet when restoration is complete.
New to Crosville Motor Services in 1961 as a conventional double deck bus, fleet no DFG81. Converted in 1977 to open top and used between Llandudno, Colwyn Bay and Rhyl. Withdrawn in 1984 and has since been owned by several preservationists before ownership passed to the present Crosville Motor Services Ltd in December 2011. DFG81 has been completely rebuilt and carries traditional Crosville open top livery. It is fitted with a recently-overhauled Gardner 6LW engine and Bristol 5-speed contant mesh (crash) gearbox which, together with a high speed rear axle, delivers a top speed of around 50mph.
This was the last rear door double deck bus to be delivered to Southern Vectis who used it on the Isle of Wight until 1978 when it was converted into a driver trainer and painted yellow. In 1992 it was reinstated as part of the Southern Vectis heritage fleet until being loaned to the Isle Of Wight Bus Museum in 1997. It was sold for further service in the Forest of Dean in 2001 and then passed into preservation the following year. YDL318 has been in the Crosville Motor Services Ltd fleet since 2011 and has seen regular service on private hire duties. It is fitted with a Gardner 6LW engine and Bristol 4-speed contant mesh (crash) gearbox.
This is a Bristol RELL, fitted with a Gardner 6HLX engine with a 5-speed semi-automatic gearbox and a 53-seat Eastern Coach Works bus body. Delivered in 1967 as fleet no 2700 and was the first of its type to enter service with Southern National at Weymouth for use on services to Portland. Later it saw service in Yeovil before passing through various owners. HDV626E joined Crosville in 2013 but has not yet seen active service except at rallies. It returned from an overhaul and refurbishment in early 2016.
Although now open top, this Bristol VRT bus was originally new to Bristol Omnibus as a standard dual door double deck 70-seat bus for use on City services as fleet no 5055. It was converted to open top in 1986 and renumbered 8622, later passing to Badgerline in 1993 for use at Weston-super-Mare until 1996 when it returned to Bristol Omnibus Company and was then sold for service on Guernsey before being repatriated and restored in 2011 for use in the Crosville heritage fleet. It has a rear-mounted Gardner 6LXB engine with a 5-speed semi-automatic gearbox and is very popular for weddings and school prom events.
This Bristol VRT was new in 1977 as Hants & Dorset fleet no 3374. Originally registered UFX855S, this VRT only spent 2 years with its original operator before moving to Southern Vectis where it was re-registered several times. After conversion to open top, it later regained a roof before further re-conversion to its current partial open top configuration. It joined our fleet in 2014 and usually runs as the Service 152 tour bus and occasionally on the 100 service to Sand Bay. Like our other Bristol VRTs, it has a rear-mounted Gardner 6LXB engine with a 5-speed semi-automatic gearbox.
This ex-Hants & Dorset Bristol KSW6A actually spent its first year in service on loan to London Transport, hence the LT insignia carried on the radiator grille. This historic bus joined Crosville in 2013 and is currently undergoing extensive overhaul, both inside and out. Mechanical work includes refurbishment of injectors, along with re-instatement of the original Autovac which draws diesel fuel from the tank and delivers it to the engine. The seats will be re-trimmed and the work will conclude with a full professional repaint and the application of period advertisements.
Next in line for restoration is our Crosville Bristol KSW6B. It requires extensive work, not having been licenced since 1975! Apart from the usual mechanical and bodywork issues, this vehicle also requires its front dome to be rebuilt. The Bristol AVW engine has already undergone a full rebuild, unique in preservation, including the manufacture of many new parts.
This Bristol LL6B, the last half cab single decker in service with Crosville, awaits the completion of its restoration to running order. Mechanical work to the chassis and braking system is almost complete and bodywork repairs will continue in 2017, including some re-glazing. After a full repaint, it is hoped to add this historic vehicle to our active heritage fleet.
22 August 2016
05 August 2016
11 May 2016
13 April 2016
30 March 2016
30 March 2016
View a collection of our favourite photos…
From Modern Coaches to Vintage Buses…
Space within our secure, covered garage…