We use cookies to track usage and preferences. See Cookie Policy
Pocketmags Digital Magazines
Pocketmags Digital Magazines
   You are currently viewing the Italy version of the site.
Would you like to switch to your local site?
Digital Subscriptions >  Latest Articles > Coaches to rely on – A Timpson & Sons and the AEC Reliance

Coaches to rely on – A Timpson & Sons and the AEC Reliance
Vintage Roadscene

Coaches to rely on – A Timpson & Sons and the AEC Reliance

Posted martedì 14 aprile 2015   |   2791 views   |   Aviation & Transport   |   Comments (2) Allan Bedford remembers travelling on the many diff erent coaches in the Timpson fleet based on the AEC Reliance chassis.

When I was a lad, our family relied on public transport to get around, with a few summer trips to the seaside on Sundays, plus the annual holiday, which were mainly courtesy of a Timpson Coach. 

These were either AEC Regal IIIs and IVs, and later on, the early Reliances. We lived at Barnehurst in Kent, then part of the Crayford Urban District, and were able to walk to Timpson’s Coach Station in Catford in about 30 minutes.

If your day trip was to Brighton, for instance, a ‘feeder’ coach would take you to the Catford headquarters, via every other town in between, involving about an hour’s additional travel, before transferring to ‘your coach’.

However, if your destination happened to be Folkestone, you would be the last to board the coach, which had performed a similar detour around South-east London. This was followed by a refreshment and comfort stop at the ‘Royal Oak’, at Wrotham Heath, just 30 minutes after boarding.

Alexander Timpson bought his first ‘Chara’, a Ryknield, built in Burton-upon-Trent, in 1912.  Karrier vehicles dominated the fleet in the 1920s and then AECs from 1929. Early Charabancs were silver – known as The Silver Cars – before the familiar rich cream and maroon with Roman-style lettering was adopted. In the late 1960s, for some inexplicable reason, the drab green and grey colours of the former Bourne & Balmer company of Croydon, acquired in 1953, were adopted. This changed again to a more acceptable white and purple combination, before the adoption of the National ‘colours’ –all-over white – under National Bus company control, along with the demise of Timpson’s, when National Travel (SE) was formed in January 1974.

According to the information contained in PSV Circle ‘PN7’ Fleet History, a total of 132 Reliances, with various chassis designations, were purchased between 1954 and 1973, including eight for the associated Bourne & Balmer Croydon fleet. These were split between six coachbuilders as follows:-

Park Royal    10*
Burlingham    8*
Weymann        14
Harrington    22
Duple        33
Plaxton        45
Total        132

* Includes the eight in the associated Bourne & Balmer Fleet

For more great articles like this get the No.185 Lovely Lutons issue of Vintage Roadscene below or subscribe and save.

Single Issue - May 2018 Replica Edition included
Or 449 points
Annual Digital Subscription
Only € 2,75 per issue
Or 3299 points
6 Month Digital Subscription
Only € 3,16 per issue
Or 1899 points
Monthly Digital Subscription
Only € 3,49 per issue
Or 349 points

View Issues

About Vintage Roadscene

Vintage Roadscene, Britain's leading road transport history magazine, takes readers on a nostalgic trip back to the good old days of motoring as it used to be, when any road journey was a grand adventure.

More great content like this...

For more great articles like this subscribe to Vintage Roadscene today.

Most read articles this month

Christmas Gifts for Her

Christmas Gifts for Her

Stuck for gift ideas for the lovely lady in your life? The Pocketmags team have pooled all their best ideas for gifts for her this Christmas. Get ready to earn some serious brownie points! More...
Christmas Gifts for Him

Christmas Gifts for Him

Why are men so hard to buy for?! If you're looking for gift ideas for the deserving gent in your life, look no further; the Pocketmags team have found some amazing gifts for him this Christmas. Boring socks begone! More...


Nashville songwriter Mark Cawley shares some tactics for reviving those elusive creative juices when you’ve lost the flow More...
3 Free Reads for the New Year

3 Free Reads for the New Year

Spend all your money in December? Us too. We’ve pulled together our 3 favourite free reads available for you on Pocketmags. Everyone loves a free read! More...
How I got  published

How I got published

The author’s debut was actually her sixth novel, she tells Dolores Gordon-Smith More...
Christmas Gifts for Kids

Christmas Gifts for Kids

Treat the smallest (and loudest) members of the family to something fun this festive season! We've rounded up our favourite gifts for kids to help you (oops, we mean Santa) out - just call us the Pocketmags elves! More...
News from the world of the piano

News from the world of the piano

Argerich and Babayan in Cleveland More...
Christmas Gifts for Everyone

Christmas Gifts for Everyone

Here at Pocketmags we're all about going digital, but we know our relatives might not always feel the same. Why not treat someone special to a print subscription from our sister site magazine.co.uk? Buy 3 Christmas gift subscriptions and you'll get £15 off at checkout. That's Christmas sorted! Here are our favourites to pick up and flick through all year round... More...
Christmas Gifts for Geeks

Christmas Gifts for Geeks

Don't get pwned this Christmas - we've got a list of the greatest gifts around for the geekiest member of your household. Prepare to beat Santa at his own game - these beauties are just what they're looking for under the tree... More...
3 Fitness Trends You Haven’t Tried

3 Fitness Trends You Haven’t Tried

We’ve all heard of the crazy exercises people are trying - from animal yoga to orange theory. But if one of your New Year's resolutions is to get fit and find some sort of exercise you’ll enjoy then maybe you will love one of these… More...
Vouchers Carte Regalo Un abbonamento rivista è il regalo perfetto , ma avrete bisogno di qualcosa da mostrare il grande giorno. Altro
Modalità di pagamento Pocketmags Payment Types
A Pocketmags si ottiene Fatturazione sicura Ultime offerte HTML Reader Regali Loyalty Points