'YOUR MEMORIES'
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Gordon Ellis
( A mine of information on Trans- United) writes;


The three AEC Regals in 1949 (GDK726-8) were, of course, from 1931, ex-East Midland.  Ben Barnes (of Benj. Barnes & Sons Ltd., Rawtenstall) bought them, arranged to have  Transun bodies fitted, then changed his mind with the arrival of new stock.  Yelloway did a deal, re-registered the coaches, hence the interior upholstery was Barnes green.

FDK568-9
and EDK740 were rebuilt in 1951 by Transun using the existing bodywork to FF status. Together with BDK990-1, rebodied in 51, they formed the nucleus of the touring fleet. These five coaches all bore the legend "Touring Limousine" in gold on the sides.  GDK303 was completely rebuilt in 1951 by Transun, following an overturning accident on the A.34 at Newcastle (Staffs) although it retained its Burlingham cab and seating.

I also have a couple of pictures showing the interior of the Weir Street booking office; peeping out on one is the well known model of a 1951 Transun u/f. 


Does anyone know what happened to the model coach at the right of this picture!


The first type of Yelloway under-floor engined Transuns (HDK803 on) were affectionately called 'Sabrinas' by the drivers, after the then popular curvaceous film star with the prominent 'front'. Below right we see the first 'Sabrina' HDK803 an AEC R1 1V new in 1951, loading up at Weir Street Coach Station for Torquay.


Mick Reynolds former regular Yelloway driver May 1969 - April 1973 adds more memories:

"I still have vivid memories of my time at Yelloway working along side of some great characters . Kenny Harrison, Dave Baron, George Horrocks, Geoff Shaw, Andy Sheilds, George Fellows to name a few. I was fortunate to spend the winter months in the body shop working with a genius coach builder named Cyril Howarth and where I also became a great pal with another driver whom worked in the body shop, a wonderful character named Arthur Chadwick. 

Arthur was then classed as a Senior Leading Driver. John Whitworth (sorry I don't remember but he may have worked there later than 1973) is to a certain extent right regarding certain drivers only being allowed to drive the first 12 mtr vehicles but that was to some extent part of the system used. The first year all new vehicles were used on the Rochdale-Torquay route, the second year they were then put on the Rochdale-London route. These duties were only given to leading drivers. 

The problems began when in their second year the London night vehicle, which started from Blackpool, was used on the Rochdale-Blackpool X79 service to get it to Blackpool and fetch the previous nights vehicle back.  This duty was performed by less experienced drivers and occasionally the rear panels would come to grief!. 

Anyhow, I think I have bored everyone rigid now but it would be good to hear from any former drivers from that era.


Mr & Mrs Rydale  E-mailed to recall their memories of traveling with Yelloway in the 1930s with their parents, and then again after WW2 in the late 1940s and 1950s:

"We were next door neighbours, and I suppose at that time childhood sweethearts, both our fathers worked down the mine in the 1930s and during the last week of July each year our family, and next doors family, took our annual one weeks holiday to Torquay together. I remember those holidays as if it were yesterday!, we all stayed at St Marychurch near Babbacombe and it was absolute bliss.

We got married in 1947 when both our fathers came out of the Royal Navy after the war and we spent our weeks honeymoon in Dartmouth courtesy of my fathers commanding officer who had a large house there. We got on the Yelloway coach at East Street L.M.S. Coach Station Manchester, just like we had always done in previous years, and our parents and friends joined us, in fact we all took up about three quarters of the coach, the driver chalked on a small blackboard "on hire to the Rydales" and put it in the front windscreen!. We remember his name, Frank Holcombe, he had a large moustache and he used to twizzle it around as he was driving. He had not long been de-mobbed from the Airforce so, as you can imagine, our parents and Frank had a lot to talk about during the long 13 hour journey. 

We continued to travel by Yelloway for our annual holiday for many years after our honeymoon. In 1958 we went to live in Herefordshire and our travels with Yelloway ceased but the fond memories will never leave us, It was pure nostalgia." 

Do you have any photographs in your museum collection which would remind us of those wonderful days?, it would be nice to see some views of the old departure point at East Street Manchester and any others along the route to Torquay.  

Sincerely,  Tom Rydale. 
 
Editor. Thanks for sharing your interesting memories with us Tom, hope the following photos bring back some nostalgia for you both.
 

Above left is a scene from the early 1930s of the East Street, Manchester, Coach Station of L.M.S. Coachways Ltd., The Yelloway stand is situated at the far right hand corner of picture. Above right is the entrance to East Street Coach Station during the 1950s. Note the Yelloway departure sign at bottom right hand corner. Below is where the first refreshment stop was on the long Devonian service which, at this period of time, took 14 hours from Manchester to Torquay!.

Below is the scene that greeted you during the late 1950-60s when you finally arrived at the Lymington Road Coach station Torquay. It was a long journey but thoroughly enjoyed by passengers and drivers who between them provided hours of family entertainment. A far cry from travelling by coach these days!.

Many of the coaches seen here were "On Hire" to Yelloway and two familiar Yorkshire companies in the foreground are Milnes Coaches of Huddersfield and Samuel Ledgard Coaches of Leeds.

Above is the former Town Hall Coach Park, Lymington Road, Torquay, which was operational until the mid 1950s when it became too small to cope with the huge amount of coaches coming into Torquay from all parts of the country. A Yelloway A.E.C.Regal is seen leaving for home followed by a Wallace Arnold coach heading for Yorkshire. Outside parked on the roadside are coaches of Yelloway and Black and White waiting their turn to enter the coach station to load up some of the hundreds of passengers who are still queuing for the long journey back home after their wonderful weeks holiday at the English Riviera. 


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