SCT'61 Articles
A Summer on the Buses

Part 5 - September 1967

This is the fifth and final part of my diary of a summer on the buses.
The first part for April is here, the second part for May and a few days in June is here, the third part for July is here and the fourth part for August is here.

Friday September 1st, 1967


Lowlander 327
Weather cloudy,wet and drizzly on and off

In by car for 05:51 start, no sign of Barry again, so with Ken Curtis, Frank Weaver and Brian Ashley for various parts of the duty.

First half in Lowlander 327, the 06:11 route 7 from Southend to Shoeburyness Cambridge Hotel, the 06:41 route 7 to Rayleigh High Street, the 07:47 route 1 to Southend, the 08:30 route 1 back to Rayleigh, the 09:16 route 7 to Shoeburyness Cambridge Hotel and the 10:26 route 8 back to Central Station. Not too busy at all, the 1 into Southend was the busiest.

Break then in Highbridge PD3 335, the 11:33 route 3 Southend to Shoeburyness Cambridge Hotel, the 12:05 route 3 to Benfleet Station and the 13:10 route 3 back to Southend. Still quiet and on the way out to Benfleet we had a National 3 in front of us so only 10 passengers from Southend to Benfleet. The return trip was busy but nothing too bad.

Finish, home by 2.

Saturday September 2nd, 1967

Weather cloudy, windy but dry

In by car for a 06:18 start. First half in PD2 290, dead to Kent Elms Corner, the 06:44 route 6A to Newington Avenue, the 07:26 route 6A to Kent Elms Corner, the 08:04 route 6 to Newington Avenue, the 08:46 route 6 back to Central Station, the 09:16 route 6 to Newington Avenue and finally the 09:36 route 6 back to Central Station.

Time for a break, then in PD2 295 on short route 7s, the 10:38 Southend to Shoeburyness Cambridge Hotel, the 11:06 to Golden Cross, the 11:48 to Shoeburyness Cambridge Hotel, the 12:36 to Golden Cross and the 13:18 back to Southend and finish.

Busyish but nothing too bad, home by 2.

Pay for the week 22/17/10 which after deductions gave me 17/3/2 in hand.

Sunday September 3rd, 1967

Weather windy and wet.

Day off today.

Monday September 4th, 1967


313 two years before working a 6 relief
Weather windy, cool but dry, sunny periods.

In by bus for a 14:40 start - Barry was back, just didn't feel like working end of last week.
Out in lowbridge PD3 313, the 15:00 route 1 from Southend to Rayleigh High Street, the 15:46 route 7 to Shoeburyness Cambridge Hotel, the 16:56 route 8 back to Rayleigh High Street, the 18:02 route 1 back to Southend arriving at 18:40 and dead to the garage. None of the trips were very busy.

Break, then in Highbridge PD3 336 on route 29, Victoria Circus to Pier Hill, to Eastwood Belgrave Road, to Pier Hill, to Eastwood Belgrave Road and finally back to Southend.
Also quiet took 14/10/- altogether, just 2/10/- on the 29s.

Very short of drivers, conductors and buses! Giles and the Inspectors were out driving and the schedules clerk out conducting. Home by 22:30.

Tuesday September 5th, 1967

Weather very windy, wet in the morning, sunny periods later

Not feeling right today so called in sick.

Wednesday September 6th, 1967

Weather dry, windy, sunny periods

In by car for a 15:40 start. In Bridgemaster 322, the 16:00 route 1 from Southend to Rayleigh High Street, the 16:46 route 7 to Shoeburyness Cambridge Hotel, the 17:56 route 8 back to Rayleigh High Street, the 19:02 route 1 back to Southend arriving at 19:40 and dead to the garage. Busyish especially on the 7, 160 passengers.

Break, was to do a route 8 to Shoebury and 7 back to Southend but taken off because Giles wanted to see me. Apparently a passenger had written in and complained because I had short changed him .... by 1d! ... and if the Corporation did nothing about it, he would take the matter further ! I think Giles was as bemused about the complaint as I was although he didn't show it, I'm sure every day I accidentally short changed several passengers and over changed a few more. Anyway I gave Giles two halfpennies to send to him.

Back to work, in Lowlander 329, route 8 from Southend to Shoeburyness Cambridge Hotel, route 7 to Rayleigh High Street and route 1 back to Southend and finish. Gave Barry a lift home.

Thursday September 7th, 1967


318 three years earlier
Weather sunny periods, cool but dry

In by bus for a 12:20 start, in Highbridge PD3 335 on route 29, the 12:41 Victoria Circus to Pier Hill, the 12:51 to Eastwood Belgrave Road, the 13:21 to Pier Hill, the 13:51 to Eastwood Belgrave Road, the 14:21 to Pier Hill, the 14:51 to Eastwood Belgrave Road and the 15:21 back to Southend where handed over. Very busy on the 'in' trips.
Got inspected on one of the out trips and it turned out a woman had got on in the High Street but paid the fare from Victoria Circus. Got a booking for that on the grounds that the fare she asked for wasn't a valid fare from the High Street, serves me right for not waiting until after Victoria Circus to collect the fares. Never quite sure what the implication of a booking was but I suppose if there were too many then it would mean a visit to Giles.

Break then in PD2 293, dead to the Ekco Works, the 17:05 route 9A to Central Station, the 17:16 route 7A to Lower Hockley Dome Caravan Site, dead to Lower Hockley, then the 18:04 route 22A back to Central Station and dead to the garage. None of the trips very busy.
Then in Bridgemaster 318 on the 19:13 route 8 from Central Station to Rayleigh High Street and the 20:01 back to Central Station.

Finished at 20:50 but then on overtime, 21:15 to 24:15, spare. Not called out, game of snooker with Barry before he was called out to do an X94 Cliffs Pavilion special to Ashingdon Schools (not sure that route ever made it to the timetables). Persuaded Girling to release me at 23:30 to catch the last 3 home.

Friday September 8th, 1967

Weather morning sunny, then cloudy but sunny again in the evening

In by car for a 15:29 start, first in highbridge PD3 335 on the 15:46 route 3 Southend to Canvey Leigh Beck, the 16:51 route 3A to Shoeburyness Blackgate Road and the 18:10 route 3A back to Southend. Quite busy especially on first trip on Canvey and also on the Southend to Blackgate Road section.
Then in Lowlander 324, the 18:43 route 8 Central Station to Rayleigh High Street and the 19:31 route 8 back to Southend. At the start picked up the football crowd for Roots Hall, filled up in Milton Street so at the stop opposite the library rang the driver through having shouted anyone want the next stop. 20 yards later, a man got up and he was still protesting when he got off at the next stop for the Civic Centre. (Southend beat Swansea 1-0). (for those who don't know the area, the library stop was the main stop on the route, normally unheard of not to stop there as it turned out we should have done). The trip back was also busy with everyone out for the night, nearly full on the top deck. Took 16 first half.

At last a break, then second half from 21:06 was spare, played billiards etc but not called down. Released at 23:30 and gave Barry and another conductor a lift home.


Saturday September 9th, 1967

Weather dry, sunny periods.

In by bus for 10:25, in Highbridge PD3 335 same as yesterday but this time on route 29, the 10:45 Southend to Eastwood Boulevard, the 11:00 to Southend, the 11:25 to Eastwood Boulevard, the 11:40 to Pier Hill, the 12:11 to Eastwood Belgrave Road, the 12:41 to Pier Hill, the 13:11 to Eastwood Belgrave Road and finally the 13:41 back to Southend. Not very busy but lots of traffic, 250 tickets issued.

Break, then in Lowlander 324, also same as yesterday, the 15:13 route 8 Southend to Rayleigh High Street, the 16:02 route 1 to Southend, the 16:45 route 1 to Rayleigh High Street, the 17:31 route 8 to Shoeburyness Cambridge Hotel, and the 18:41 route 7 back to Southend. Again traffic jams, especially at Victoria House Corner on the route 1 in, running 10 minutes late but not too many passengers.

Took 17 whole day, home by 19:30.

Pay for the week 13/8/3 which after deductions gave me 10/16/5 in hand.

Sunday September 10th, 1967

Weather drizzle in the morning, otherwise dry with sunny periods

Day off today

Monday September 11th, 1967


A view inside the Tunbridge Road works
Weather hazy sun and cloud.

In by car for an 04:53 start - the earliest yet - work as required. Got there at 5, Barry at about 5:45 !
'Lumbered' at 06:20 in Lowlander 323, the 06:25 route 1 Southend to Rayleigh High Street, the 07:16 route 7 to Shoeburyness Cambridge Hotel and the 08:26 route 8 back to Central Station where got taken off. Not too busy, took 7/10/-.

Break, nothing else in second half apart from a bus change with driver Brian Ashley. Told to change a 29 bus at Pier Hill with only 3 minutes to spare. When we got there no sign of the crew so set the blinds and moved everything across such as the Conductor's ticket machine and metal box, then headed off as instructed with the bus to Tunbridge Road Repair Works. Not sure what the crew thought when they found a completely different bus sitting there. Because of the rush, I had to go along to the works so had a look around.

Lowbridge PD3 312 was there - see the diary for 18th August for the sorry tale. It was in a sad state, panels on all four sides bent, big hole in roof, windows smashed (upstairs front offside and downstairs middle nearside), bumpers bent , lights smashed and so on.

Walked to the Blue Boar, caught bus back to Victoria Circus and walked back to the garage.
Released at 12:30.

Tuesday September 12th, 1967


Lowbridge PD3 316 in Rochford several years later
Weather dry, some sun especially in the afternoon

In by bus for an 06:25 start. Barry turned up 20 minutes later and sent out on another duty so didn't meet up with him until the final route 6s.

So in Lowbridge PD2 297, the 06:43 route 8 from Southend to Rayleigh High Street (looking at the timetable I suspect we transferred passengers from an early morning OMO working), the 07:32 route 1 back to Southend, dead to Great Wakering Church, then the 08:33 route 4 back to Southend Central Station and finally dead to the garage. The 1 and the 4 were busy, on the 4 issued 25 2/4d returns and 24 singles.
Then in Lowlander 328 on route 3A (an unusual vehicle allocation) the 09:13 Southend to Shoeburyness Cambridge Hotel and the 09:45 3A back to Southend where handed over. Then the same trip again, this time in Highbridge PD3 336, the 10:13 route 3A Southend to Shoeburyness Cambridge Hotel and the 10:45 3A back to Southend. The first trip was quiet, the second busier but not too bad.

Now time for a break, then in lowbridge PD3 315 on the 11:58 route 7 from Central Station to Rayleigh High Street and the 12:47 route 1 back to Southend, very peaceful trip but sadly the peace was shattered by picking up PD2 300 on the 13:40 route 6A Central Station to Kent Elms Corner, the 14:04 route 6 back to Central Station where handed over. 'Chronic' was the word I used especially on the return 'in' trip, prams, pushchairs and the not so young and less nimble out in force.

Finish at 14:29 but one minute later started overtime, work as required, but lumbered for the 15:28 route 7 from Southend to Rayleigh High Street in Lowbridge PD3 316, the 16:17 route 1 to Southend, the 17:00 route 1 back to Rayleigh, the 17:46 route 7 through to Shoeburyness Cambridge Hotel and the 18:56 route 8 back to Central Station, walk back to garage and finish.
Picked up several schools on the first 7 and the 1 was busy too.
Overall issued 800 tickets and took 31/10/-.

Wednesday September 13th, 1967

Weather sun and showers

In by bus for an 05:53 start. Obviously that was a bit early for Barry who came in 20 minutes late and picked up the duty when we came back through Southend on the first 7.

Out in Lowlander 324, the 06:11 route 7 from Southend to Shoeburyness Cambridge Hotel, the 06:41 route 7 to Rayleigh High Street, the 07:47 route 1 to Southend and the 08:30 route 1 back to Rayleigh, the 09:16 route 7 through to Shoeburyness Cambridge Hotel and the 10:26 route 8 back to Central Station.

Time for a break, then Highbridge PD3 343 on the 11:33 route 3 from Southend to Shoeburyness Cambridge Hotel, the 12:05 route 3 to Benfleet Station and the 13:10 route 3 back to Southend. Not too busy, very quiet on the trip to Benfleet, reached Tarpots Corner with no passengers left on.

Finish at 14:00.

Thursday September 14th, 1967


PD2 305 when brand new, 10 years earlier
Weather heavy rain morning, showers rest of day

In by car for 05:23 start, even earlier than yesterday so clearly Barry was late again and put on another duty and didn't see him all day.
Out in Highbridge PD3 338, the 05:43 route 3 Southend to Shoeburyness Station, the 06:11 route 3A to Canvey Leigh Beck, the 07:31 route 3 back to Shoeburyness Station and the 09:11 route 3 to Southend where handed over. Included the dreaded 07:31 from Leigh Beck, 202 passengers on the trip but quite enjoyed being busy, no big rushes of passengers and everything under control. Was nearly full into Benfleet Station and full up for the Southchurch Boulevard schools.

Break, then in PD2 305, the 10:08 route 7 from Central Station to Hockley Spa, the 10:45 route 7 back to Kursaal, the 11:33 route 7 to Hockley Spa, then dead to Hockley Primary Schools (all of one minute up the road to Rayleigh) and the 12:14 route 7 from there back to Central Station and finish, home by 13:20.
Overall 450 passengers, took 17.

Friday September 15th, 1967


341 seen eight years later
Weather showers all day

In by bus for 06:18, Barry there on time today.
Out in PD2 310, the 06:38 route 7 from Central Station to Hockley Spa, the 07:15 to Pier Hill, dead to Shoebury Common, the 08:09 to Golden Cross, the 08:48 to Kursaal, the 09:18 to Golden Cross and the 09:48 to Central Station where handed over. Only the second and third trips were busy.

Break, then in highbridge PD3 341, the 11:06 route 3A from Southend to Canvey Leigh Beck, the 12:01 route 3 back to Southend. Quiet for a Leigh Beck trip, only 20 waiting at Benfleet Station.
Next 30 minutes W.A.R. then in PD2 305, the 13:48 route 9A from Central Station to Ekco Works, dead back to Central Station, then route 29B, the 14:10 from Central Station to the Westcliff General Hospital and the 14:22 back again and dead to the garage. The 29B was a three trips a day direct route to the hospital.

Saturday September 16th, 1967

Weather cloudy, some showers, fog patches in the evening.

Same duty as August 19th, in by car for an 08:50 start with Barry.

In Lowbridge PD3 315 dead to the Woodmans Arms, then a duplicate route 1 to Southend and dead to the garage, hardly any passengers.
Then picked up Bridgemaster 318 on the 10:13 route 8 from Southend to Shoeburyness Cambridge Hotel, the 10:41 route 7 to Rayleigh High Street and the 11:47 route 1 back to Southend.

Break then in 298 on route 62, Southend Central Station to Plough Hotel and back 5 times with a 17 minute stand at Central Station each time to watch the world go by. The Rochford carnival was on today so the 7s and 8s were in chaos but the 62s were leisurely.

Home by 17:30.

Pay for the week 17/0/2 which after deductions gave me 12/18/11 in hand.

Sunday September 17th, 1967

Weather cloudy but dry

In by car for a 15:30 sign-on, W.A.R., work as required.

Got lumbered at 16:30 in Lowlander 326 for the 16:43 route 8 from Central Station to Rayleigh High Street, the 17:31 route 8 back to Shoeburyness Cambridge Hotel and the 18:41 route 7 back to Central Station where handed over. Very quiet, only took 5/10/-.
Break, then nothing else.
Inspector Girling had forgotten I was still there but at 2 time pay, 15/5d per hour, I decided not to remind him until I had worked 8 hours ... 6/3/4 not to be sniffed at!

Monday September 18th, 1967

Weather rain in the morning, afternoon sunny.

In by bus for a 12:55 start, in Bridgemaster 322 on the 13:13 route 8 Central Station to Rayleigh High Street, the 14:01 route 8 to Shoeburyness Cambridge Hotel and the 15:11 route 7 back to Central Station. The second 8 was busy.
Break, then in Highbridge PD3 340 the 16:16 route 3 from Southend to Canvey Leigh Beck and the 17:21 route 3A back to Southend where handed over. Then in 342, the 18:34 route 3A to Canvey Leigh Beck and the 19:51 3A back to Southend where transferred the passengers to an OMO single decker to finish off the day's trips. Two trips to Canvey in one half shift was unusual with a fair crowd at Benfleet Station each time, otherwise not too bad.
Took 17/10/- all day.

Tuesday September 19th, 1967

Weather windy, sunny periods, bit of drizzle in the evening.

In by car for a 15:29 start, in Highbridge PD3 341, the 15:46 route 3 from Southend to Canvey Leigh Beck, the 16:51 route 3A to Shoeburyness Blackgate Road and the 18:10 3A back to Southend where handed over. Both parts of the Leigh Beck trip were busy, 300 tickets altogether. Full load at Shipwrights School, otherwise a few people but at every stop.
Then in Lowlander 325, the 18:43 route 8 Central Station to Rayleigh High Street and the 19:31 route 8 back to Southend. Quiet.

Break then second half spare until midnight but lumbered for a duty finishing at midnight - you'd usually expect to get away at least 30 minutes early if you're on spare. In PD2 297, the 21:30 route 17 from Central Station to Temple Sutton Schools, the 21:45 route 16 to Kent Elms Corner, the 22:19 route 16 back to Temple Sutton Schools, the 22:54 route 17 to the Woodcutters Arms, last through 17 of the day, the 23:35 route 17 back to Chalkwell Park and dead to the garage. Very quiet. Not sure of the point of the last 17 but I suppose it was taking the route back to the garage anyway as far as Chalkwell Park so may as well run as a service bus. It was scheduled to get there at 23:46 and the last 1 of the day was due there one minute later and the last 2 six minutes later so I suppose in theory late passengers could change and make it to the town centre. The other challenge for me would have been finding Chalkwell Park on the destination blinds.

Handed in my notice for Saturday week!

Wednesday September 20th, 1967


Lowbridge PD3 314
Weather mainly sunny but a little rain.

In by car for 15:03, with Barry on a mix of routes in Lowlander 324.
Started with the 15:28 route 9B from Central Station to Sutton Schools and the 15:45 back to Central Station. Sutton Schools was a junior/infant school maybe a quarter of a mile into the country with no other bus routes nearby. The result was 70 schoolchildren on board, most of whom were travelling just one or two stops!
Then two loops of the 29A, first out, the second in, followed by the 17:05 route 9 from Central Station to Vickers Road and the 17:19 route 9 back to Central Station, then the 17:45 route 4 from Central Station to Landwick and the 18:14 back to Central Station and finally one more (out) loop of the 29A. Apart from the two minutes of chaos of the 9B, quiet.

Then a break followed by lowbridge PD3 314 on the 20:28 route 7 from Central Station to Rayleigh High Street and the 21:17 route 1 back to Southend. Too quiet!
Then took over highbridge PD3 344, the 22:10 route 16 Central Station to Temple Sutton Schools, the 22:24 route 17 to the Woodcutters Arms (busy out of the town centre with cinema crowds) and finally the 23:05 route 17 back to Central Station and dead to the garage.

Thursday September 21st, 1967


Bridgemaster 321
Weather mainly sunny, cloudy afternoon, rain shower at 4pm

In by car for 14:09 start
Took over PD2 306, the 14:26 route 6 Central Station to Newington Avenue, the 14:46 route 6 back to Central Station, the 15:16 to Newington Avenue again and the 15:36 back to Central Station. Busy.
Then picked up Lowlander 331, the 15:58 route 7 from Central Station to Rayleigh High Street, the 16:47 route 1 to Southend. Very busy and lots of traffic so late back.

Break, then in Highbridge PD3 343, the 18:13 route 3A Southend to Shoeburyness, the 18:41 route 3 back to Southend and car to garage, as the 10 minute frequency during the day reduced to 20 minutes in the evening. Quiet.
Then in Bridgemaster 321, the 19:30 route 1 Southend to Rayleigh High Street and the 20:16 route 7 back to Southend. The 1 was busy out of Southend but the 7 was very quiet.
Finish, took 12/10/- all day and home by 21:30

Friday September 22nd, 1967

Weather mainly sunny, dry.

Got a lift in for a 12:15 start.
First half was spare and was unlumbered (a technical term!)
Second half was in PD2 298, short route 7s, the 16:16 Southend to Kursaal, the 16:33 to Hockley Spa, the 17:15 to Kursaal, the 18:03 to Hockley Spa, the 18:45 to Kursaal and the 19:33 back to Central Station and dead to the garage. Both trips to Spa were full up out of Southend and last trip to towards Kursaal was nearly full with football traffic.

Then signed up for 4 hours spare overtime. Only one trip in Highbridge PD3 342 on a football special, route 7 from Priory Park to Golden Cross then dead to the garage. A full load from Priory Park, a rare visit by a Highbridge PD3 to Rochford and Golden Cross (much further along the route and it would have been stuck under a railway bridge).

Short of crews, only 2 drivers and 3 conductors left in the garage.
Released at 23:15 and caught the last 3 home.


Saturday September 23rd, 1967

Weather rain showers, windy

In by car for a 15:40 start.
In Lowbridge PD3 316, the 15:56 route 7 Southend to Shoeburyness Cambridge Hotel, the 16:26 route 8 to Rayleigh High Street, the 17:32 route 1 to Southend Victoria Circus, the 18:15 route 1 back to Rayleigh and the 19:01 route 8 to Southend where handed over. Busy, especially the 8 out of Southend where we were full up.

Break, then more of the same, in Lowlander 332 the 20:58 route 7 Southend Central Station to Rayleigh High Street, the 21:47 route 1 to Southend, the 22:30 route 1 back to Rayleigh and the 23:16 route 7 to Southend, the last 7 of the day reaching Southend just before midnight, and finished.
Very quiet except for the route 1 out from Southend.

Pay for the week 21/16/5 which after deductions (including 2/8d for shorts) gave me 16/6/2 in hand.

Sunday September 24th, 1967

Weather rain showers and sunny periods

In by car for 08:55, took Highbridge PD3 341 from the garage on route 29, the 09:15 Southend to Eastwood Belgrave Road, the 09:41 to Pier Hill, the 10:11 to Eastwood Belgrave Road, the 10:41 to Pier Hill, the 11:11 to Eastwood Belgrave Road and the 11:41 back to Southend where handed over. Very quiet, only 80 passengers.

Break, then in Lowlander 326, the 12:58 route 7 from Central Station to Rayleigh High Street, the 13:46 route 7 to Shoeburyness Cambridge Hotel, the 14:56 route 8 to Rayleigh High Street and the 16:01 route 8 back to Southend and handed over. Also quiet.

Took total of 10 all day, 200 passengers.



Monday September 25th, 1967


Maybe 10 years later, a Southend Fleetline waits at the Anchor, South Fambridge. The first Fleetlines arrived in 1971.
Weather dry, some sun, rain in the evening

In by car in a record time 5mins 19secs, via the Seafront and Southchurch Avenue. Not going to better that.

Due to start at 05:39 but thanks to the record breaking journey got there at 05:38 and they were so short of conductors that immediately put on a duty that had started twenty minutes before, and should have just been pulling away from Central Station.

So slightly late but not really a problem at that time of day, in Lowlander 327 dead from the garage to Central Station, the 05:38 route 7 to Hockley Spa, the 06:12 route 8 back to Central Station and handed over.
Then back to the garage to pick up PD2 297, dead to Central Station, the 07:18 route 7 to Hockley Spa, dead to South Fambridge Anchor, and the 08:03 route 7B to Pier Hill (a twice a day route).

Break, then second half of the duty I'd taken over was spare and wasn't lumbered.
Missed 2 Leigh Becks and a Rayleigh High Street on the duty I should have had and got an extra 20 minutes pay at rest day rates !

Tuesday September 26th, 1967


PD2 288, seen three years later, on a 62
Weather warm, moist, sunny afternoon and evening

In by bus for 0646 sign on. Barry was late but as we left the garage and drove round the ring road, he was walking in so he took over and the spare driver returned to the garage.

In PD2 295 on a mix of routes, the 07:06 route 28 from Southend to Hamstel Road, the 07:17 back to Chalkwell Schools, both quiet, then the 07:45 route 69 from there to the Ekco Works arriving 10 minutes later, reasonably busy, (one of only two 69s a day unless there was a home football match at Roots Hall).
Dead from there to Shoeburyness Cambridge Hotel, then the 08:10 route 3 back from there to Southend arriving at 08:29, another quiet trip.
Now switched to short route 7s, Central Station to Golden Cross, to Kursaal, to Golden Cross and back to Southend where handed over. Some busy.
Then picked up Highbridge PD3 344 on route 29, Southend to Pier Hill, to Eastwood Belgrade Road and back to Southend where handed over. Busy.

At last a break, then took over PD2 292, three round trips on the 29A, in then out then in, reasonably busy, dead to Eastwood Belgrave Road, then route 23 to Leigh Station, to Belgrave Road, to Leigh Station and to Elm Hotel where handed over. The route 23 was one of the very few where a handover was not within walking distance of the garage and the duty included details of the bus we should catch back but an SCT Bus on a private hire came along heading back to the garage so we were able to cadge a lift.

End of main duty, now some overtime.
In PD2 288, the 16:13 route 7 Kursaal to Ashingdon Schools, back to Central Station, suprisingly quiet, then a 6 duplicate to Hamstel Road, moderately busy, dead back to Victoria Circus and two loops of 29A, out then in, deadly quiet.

Home just after 7pm, in time for Z Cars on the TV, 610 passengers all day, took 20.

Wednesday September 27th, 1967

Weather showers early and late, otherwise sunny

In by bus for an 07:10 start, quite a late one for a morning shift. In Lowlander 323, the 07:30 route 1 from Victoria Circus to Rayleigh High Street (fairly busy), the 08:16 route 7 to Shoeburyness Cambridge Hotel (very busy, 100+ passengers and took 7), the 09:26 route 8 back to Rayleigh High Street (very busy again with Rayleigh Market, nearly 100 passengers), the 10:31 route 8 back to Shoeburyness Cambridge Hotel (busy again especially down to the sea front, nearly another 100 passengers) and the 11:41 route 7 back to Central Station with a bus change to 314 en-route, where handed over. The window between the cab and the saloon on 323 was missing so was actually able to talk to Terry. Total of 18 in the first half.

Break, then more of the same, in Lowlander 324 the 12:56 route 7 from Southend to Shoeburyness Cambridge Hotel (very busy again, 60+ passengers), then a quiet route 8 back, the 13:26 to Central Station where handed over.
Then picked up Highbridge PD3 336, the 14:03 route 29 down to Pier Hill, the 14:11 to Eastwood Belgrave Road, the 14:41 to Pier Hill, the 15:11 to Eastwood Belgrave Road and the 15:41 back to Southend where handed over. All was quiet except for the last trip where picked up at Westcliff High School (the girls part, the boys had a later finishing time around 4 to keep them apart except of course it was a Wednesday when they finished at four thirty) and also from the end of Hospital Visiting.

Caught a route 3 home - another student conductor was struggling a bit with the full load so helped him out by doing the bells until Thorpe Bay Station.

Thursday September 28th, 1967


304 two years earlier
Weather sunny and hot

In bus for an 07:32 start, another late start for a morning shift which while you didn't have to get up so early, you were pitched straight into the rush hour rather than one or two peaceful early morning journeys.
To take it worse in one of the Weymann lightweight bodied PD2s, 304, dead to Golden Cross, the 08:03 route 7 to Pier Hill, moderately busy, dead to Newington Avenue, the 08:36 route 6 to Kent Elms Corner (three bells on the trip from Newington Avenue into Southend despite still showing route 7 on the front, didn't seem to put the passengers off), the 09:14 route 6A to Newington Avenue, the 09:56 route 6A back to Kent Elms Corner and the 10:34 route 6 back to Central Station where handed over. The last trips were quiet but lots of pensioners. Finally to make up the varied half shift, in Highbridge PD3 334 on the 11:13 route 3A from Southend to Shoeburyness Hotel and the 11:45 route 3A back to Southend where handed over.

Break, then 20 minutes WAR - played snooker. Then in PD2 295 on route 7, the 13:18 Central Station to Kursaal, the 13:33 to Hockley Spa, the 14:15 to Kursaal, the 15:03 to Hockley Spa and dead to Hockley Primary School and the 15:45 back to Southend where handed over. Very quiet apart from the last trip with seemingly 100s of schoolkids.

Home by 5.

Friday September 29th, 1967


The sign all downstairs offside pssengers saw to remind them on lowbridge buses like 296 to watch out for the sunken gangway upstairs when they stood up
Weather wet, heavy showers

In by car for an 05:53 start, out in Lowlander 332, the 06:13 route 8 from Central Station to Rayleigh High Street, the 07:01 route 8 back to Shoeburyness Cambridge Hotel, the 08:11 route 7 to Rayleigh High Street and the 09:17 route 1 back to Southend. The 8s were quiet but the 7 very busy with over 150 tickets and 60 plus school passes, the 1 was not too bad.

Break, then in PD2 296 on short route 7s, the 10:36 Victoria Circus to Kursaal, the 10:48 to Golden Cross, the 11:18 to Kursaal, the 11:48 to Golden Cross, the 12:18 to Kursaal, the 12:48 to Golden Cross and finally the 13:18 back to Southend. Busy out of Southend each time.

Took 19/10/- overall, home by 2.

Saturday September 30th 1967


Lowlander 328 in the 1970s, while on hire to Alder Valley
Weather mainly sunny

In by bus for an 07:03 start, my last day.

Start with some route 3s, in Highbridge PD3 338, out from the garage, then the 07:23 route 3 from Victoria Circus to Shoeburyness (quiet), the 07:51 route 3 to Canvey Leigh Beck (very busy 150 odd tickets), the 09:21 route 3A back to Shoeburyness (very busy again, another 150 odd tickets), and the 10:41 route 3A back to Southend. There were traffic jams on the final trip and we handed over 10 minutes late.

Break then a final Rayleigh round, in Lowlander 328, the 12:00 route 1 from Victoria Circus to Rayleigh High Street and the 12:46 route 7 back to Southend Victoria Circus due at 13:28. We took the 1 over 5 minutes late and were 10 minutes behind by the time we reached Rayleigh. On the return 7, Barry decided in honour of my last day to take it nice and steady so we reached Southend still 10 minutes late. We were full up from Rochford onwards and I took 7 on the one trip. One old lady complimented me on the smooth ride as she got off at Victoria Circus. Probably a good job she got off there because the crew taking over were distinctly unhappy about taking over 10 minutes late and the new driver was one of the more aggressive so the passengers were in for a rough ride as he tried to make up time.

Walked to the garage, then dead to Central Station for two return trips on route 62, the 13:55 to Westcliff Plough, the 14:10 back to Central Station, a 17 minute wait, then the 14:40 to Westcliff Plough, the 14:55 back to Central Station. Quiet, hardly any passengers. Despite being my final trip, didn't make a note of which bus it was. Took 27 all day, 750 passengers. Home by 4pm.

Pay for the week 23/7/10 (I worked every day) which after deductions (including 2/8d for shorts) gave me 17/4/6 in hand.

Monday October 2nd 1967

The final act .... to the garage in the afternoon to hand my uniform in and then to the Civic Centre to pick up my wages.