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    LS789 front off
  • 5789 AH

  • 1959 Bristol MW5G

  • Engine - Gardner 5

  • Bodywork - ECW C39F

  • Body number - 11290

  • Chassis number - 139276

  • Engine - Gardner 5HLW

LS789 front off These pictures, taken in January 2003, show the vehicle resplendent with newly applied fleetnames. Formerly LS789, this coach started life in the "Metropolitan Coaches" fleet of Eastern Counties based at Great Yarmouth. Dating from 1959, it was purchased from a Lowestoft school in 1978 and is now back on the road after many years of restoration.

LS789 front nearLS789 was new to ECOC, being licensed on 14th May 1959. Initially it was based at Norwich as a spare coach, albeit carrying newly-modified Metropolitan Coaches cream and brown livery, having just a narrow band brown waist strip rather than brown surrounds (the vehicle still has a brown centre to the steering wheel). From 1st June 1959 the vehicle was allocated to the Metropolitan Coaches fleet in Great Yarmouth, operating the summer excursions previously licensed to Reynolds Garages, taken over in 1951. It would have had Metropolitan Coaches and Eastern Counties fleetnames on the front, but just Metropolitan Coaches on the sides. Eastern Counties fleet names and numbers were restored to the vehicle in February 2003, as seen in these pictures.

LS789 rearUp until 1963 the vehicle would be allocated to Great Yarmouth in the summer and, as with many coaches, was usually delicensed through the winter. In early 1963 the seats were re-trimmed with a red/black-striped moquette and grey trim from the original red flower-patterned moquette, while the livery and fleetnames were changed to the cream/maroon of the coach fleet. In 1965 the present roof box replaced the small destination apertures, and bus indicators fitted.

Demotion to bus work was in December 1967, and conversion to omo was in December 1969. It was repainted red (up to waist level) and white above in May 1973, being withdrawn on 6th August 1976, and in November of that year it was acquired by Kirkley High School, Lowestoft, being painted into the burnt maroon and primrose livery of Waveney D.C.

The Eastern Counties Omnibus Society purchased the vehicle in June 1978 and it was seen at rallies and even loaned to Truck Services of Norwich as a promotional vehicle. From 1989 until 2002 restoration was carried out, when on 14th July it was seen by the public for the first time at the "EATMS Tribute to Eastern Coach Works" event.

  • 14.5.59 First licensed to Norwich

  • 1.6.59 Great Yarmouth-delicensed 30.9.59

  • ?.5.60 Great Yarmouth-delicensed 30.9.60

  • 11.2.61 Great Yarmouth-delicensed 28.2.61

  • ?.5.61 Norwich

  • 1.6.61 GreatYarmouth

  • 30.9.62 De-licensed - stored at Norwich. ECOC fleetnames applied to LS788/9 1.62 when new coaches for 1963 season confirmed

  • 1.2.63 Norwich

  • 1.5.66 Cromer-delicensed 30.9.66

  • 1.6.67 Cromer-delicensed 30.9.67

  • 1.12.67 Officially re-classified from coach to stage carriage vehicle with coach seats

  • 1.6.68 Great Yarmouth

  • ?.8.68 King's Lynn-delicensed 30.9.68

  • 1.6.69 King's Lynn-delicensed 30.11.69

  • 12.69 Conversion to Pay-As-You-Enter commenced

  • 1.2.70 Norwich

  • 1.8.70 King's Lynn

  • 1.1.71 Peterborough-delicensed 31.12.71

  • 1.6.72 Peterborough

Author: Richard Dixon


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