Type of Vehicle - Double Deck Bus
Year Built/Registered - 1950
Vehicle Description - Guy Arab IV with 54 seat Metro Cammell body
Reg No - JOJ 548
Fleet No - 2548
Livery/Operator - Birmingham City Transport
JOJ 548 - 1950 Guy Arab IV
Birmingham City Transport No 2548
Owner - 2548 Group
Body - 54 seat 'high bridge' type built by Metropolitan-Cammell Carriage & Wagon Co Ltd
Engine - Gardner 6LW, 8.4 litre - 120 bhp at 1700 rpm
Transmission - Pre-selective epicyclic gearbox with fluid clutch
The chassis of this bus was one of the first batch of 100 'Arab' Mk IVs built at Guy Motor's Fallings Park factory in Wolverhampton and the body was constructed and fitted at MCCW's Marstone Green factory, Bickenhill Lane, Birmngham.
2548 was one of 902 'standard' buses built for Birmingham to the same general design by different manufacturers, with the radiator concealed by the 'new look' front, a feature developed by Guy Motors for Birmingham City Transport (BCT). The cost of the bus when new was £4,440 and it entered service on 3 October 1950.
For 2548 the first eighteen years of passenger service were spent at Quinton Garage operating on the 3,9,6,10,11,33 and 34 routes, before moving to Hockle Garage in 1968 where the bus was a regular on the Soho Road services to Dudley, West Bromwich, Wednesbury and Wolverhampton as well as the No 8 Inner Circle and the cross-city 15/16 and 90/91 routes. From 1 October 1969, 2548 along with the whole BCT fleet passed to West Midland Passenger Transport Executive (WMPTE).
Withdrawn from normal service in April 1972 after clocking up 545,000 miles, 2548 was renumbered 197 and converted to a promotions bus for WMPTE's new Travelcard. The upper deck was turned into a cinema with windows blanked out and seats turned round to face a projector screen at the rear. Eventually made redundant from this role at the end of 1977, she was rescued by Quinton-based 2548 Group in April 1979. After most of the alterations for Travelcard promotion had been reversed, she spent the next four years on the historic rally scene before being taken off the road for major mechanical, electrical and bodywork refurbishment which was completed at Aston Manor Transport Museum, Witton, Birmingham in May 2011. Apart from some welding work, upholstering of seats and signwriting of external advertisements, all other work was undertaken by 2548 Group volunteers. It is estimated that a total of 20,000 man hours went into the restoration.
The bus has been returned to the livery it carried in the 1960s with all fittings, transfers, advertisements and notices appropriate to that period.
For further information and a full history see - www.2548group.org