BUS DESIGN SINCE ‘49

ALAN MILLAR considers the trends —and occasional cul de sacs —that have taken place in the form and functionality of local service double- and single-deckers in the 75 years since this magazine first appeared

Typical of double-deckers of the immediate postwar years was Leeds City Transport 385 (NNW 385), a 26ft 1950 Leyland Titan PD2/1 with a 56-seat version of the manufacturer’s Farington body with separately mounted opening window vents. Following it is 731 (TNW 731), a 27ft AEC Regent III with 58-seat Roe body built in the city.
JIM THOMSON

Design is about form and functionality, and there have been great changes to both in the 75 years since 1949, when most new buses looked much like those of ten years earlier.

Whether single- or double-deck, they had a front engine, halfcab and exposed radiator. Double-deckers usually had a rear entrance and staircase with an open platform (always with a step up into the lower saloon), while most single-deckers had an enclosed forward entrance. Typical double-deckers had 56 seats in full-height configuration, 53 with an offside top-deck sunken gangway in lowbridge form, while a typical single-decker had 35.

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