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Midland Red Around Birmingham.

farmerdave

master brummie
P1020998.JPG P1020999.JPG This Midland Red bus was seen last Thursday running short bus trips within the Black Country Living Museum near Tipton. Dave.
 

Radiorails

master brummie
Thank you for posting that more than interesting picture Farmer Dave. I wonder if that bus goes outside the museum grounds and onto public roads? I have a picture which says it has done so in the past.

Post amended to reflect new information correcting the incorrect detail posted.
The reference I used was partially incorrect.
 
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Brummygirl66

master brummie
Can anyone help me with finding pictures of the buses that ran just over the border in Smethwick such as the 221, 220, 233, 229, 214, 215, and the bus my husband caught to school the 212. I've searched in a lot of different websites but can't really find anything. Any help would be great, thanks.
 

Radiorails

master brummie
There is a book by the well known transport writer, David Harvey, with lots of pics and info about West Bromwich Corporation buses. I am not sure the time period you speak of Brummiegirl, however as I travelled rarely on West Brom buses I am not that familiar with their routes. Hopefully someone with more info will also respond.
Most WB bus routes had single or double figures, the three figure ones were Midland Red numbers which WB ran a joint service on some of them. 220 was WB to Bearwood, 221 seems also to be a WB to Bearwood but presumably by different roads and ending up in a different part. I don't know about the other routes you mention. Of interest 252 was always a single deck route until 1967 when a lower than usual double deck buses were bought. This was due to a canal aqueduct bridge in Wednesbury. I believe the WMPTE renumbered some of the routes.
The West Brom area, together with most of the other large municipal buses operations in the West Midlands became the WMPTE in 1979.
I hope that gives you something to go one. Keep searching, you never know what might turn up. ;)
 

DavidGrain

master brummie
220 Joint MR & WBCT Bearwood to West Brom via Smethwick
221 Joint MR & WBCT Bearwood to West Brom via Warley and West Smethwick (my bus home from school)
252 Joint MR & WBCT Shireland Road (connecting with BCT 5A/7 to West Brom & Carters Green. This should have been 222 but MR buses did not carry 3 of any numbers which was why, before roller number blinds, there was no 111, 222 or 333 etc.
233 MR Bearwood to Oldbury via Warley and Causeway Green
229 MR Bearwood to Blackheath via Warley, Rood End and Oldbury (My first job, 229 to work and home except on Friday I went home on 233 as we left work 15 minutes earlier)
214 MR Warley to Smethwick Cape Hill via Bearwood Always single deck
215 I don't recall this one
124 MR Birmingham to Langley via Bearwood and Warley
224 MR Bearwood to Warley. Purely a shortworking, I think just peak periods only
There was also
211 MR Bearwood to Oldbury via Brandhall Estate

Bearwood to Warley must have been one of the most busiest areas for bus operations
 

Radiorails

master brummie
That puts a lot more flesh on the bones David. Living south of the city meant that the Black Country wasn't a place I visited often and when I did it was usually Dudley.
Regarding the 111, 222 etc of Midland Red it always, to me, that the metal stencils were one of the quaint practices of the company - along with the bell cords rather than the electric push buttons of the BCT. :D
 

Brummygirl66

master brummie
There is a book by the well known transport writer, David Harvey, with lots of pics and info about West Bromwich Corporation buses. I am not sure the time period you speak of Brummiegirl, however as I travelled rarely on West Brom buses I am not that familiar with their routes. Hopefully someone with more info will also respond.
Most WB bus routes had single or double figures, the three figure ones were Midland Red numbers which WB ran a joint service on some of them. 220 was WB to Bearwood, 221 seems also to be a WB to Bearwood but presumably by different roads and ending up in a different part. I don't know about the other routes you mention. Of interest 252 was always a single deck route until 1967 when a lower than usual double deck buses were bought. This was due to a canal aqueduct bridge in Wednesbury. I believe the WMPTE renumbered some of the routes.
The West Brom area, together with most of the other large municipal buses operations in the West Midlands became the WMPTE in 1979.
I hope that gives you something to go one. Keep searching, you never know what might turn up. ;)

I'm really looking early '70's as I know the buses changed around 1974? to become WMPTE, the 229/233 I never travelled on as Midland Red, but the Smethwick services I remember from when I was a little girl. Thank you for mentioning that book, I'll certainly have a look for it after Christmas.
 

Brummygirl66

master brummie
220 Joint MR & WBCT Bearwood to West Brom via Smethwick
221 Joint MR & WBCT Bearwood to West Brom via Warley and West Smethwick (my bus home from school)
252 Joint MR & WBCT Shireland Road (connecting with BCT 5A/7 to West Brom & Carters Green. This should have been 222 but MR buses did not carry 3 of any numbers which was why, before roller number blinds, there was no 111, 222 or 333 etc.
233 MR Bearwood to Oldbury via Warley and Causeway Green
229 MR Bearwood to Blackheath via Warley, Rood End and Oldbury (My first job, 229 to work and home except on Friday I went home on 233 as we left work 15 minutes earlier)
214 MR Warley to Smethwick Cape Hill via Bearwood Always single deck
215 I don't recall this one
124 MR Birmingham to Langley via Bearwood and Warley
224 MR Bearwood to Warley. Purely a shortworking, I think just peak periods only
There was also
211 MR Bearwood to Oldbury via Brandhall Estate

Bearwood to Warley must have been one of the most busiest areas for bus operations

The 229, 233 and 221 were my school buses when I went to Bristnall Hall, I'm guessing you were from Bearwood as well! The 214 we would catch home from the Cape and when I lived in Smethwick, my nan and I would meet my mom off the 252 when she worked at Baines on the Cape. Thank you for the route details, it really seems as if as you say, Bearwood and Warley were especially well off for bus routes.

I should add that when I was catching the 221, 229 and 233 they were WMPTE buses and became the 128, 129 and 448 in about 1980/81
 

badpenny

Deleted Upon Request
I seem to remember that Midland Red buses used to have their home garage in small letters on the route blind...
 

Radiorails

master brummie
I seem to remember that Midland Red buses used to have their home garage in small letters on the route blind...
Apparently so, it was at the extreme left hand side of the blind. This was a post war feature as was the double blind named A and B, plus a three track route number, (letters in the first column on some cases). This up to date and usually very informative and readable destination box was trialled with some of the wartime bus rebuilds and featured on all new buses after 1946. It made a welcome change from the peculiar sloping names seen in the photo below,
upload_2017-12-16_18-58-47.png

The bus here was new in 1936 and lasted until 1954.
 
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Radiorails

master brummie
The X92 route was to Kidderminster and on summer week-ends and bank holidays went as far as Llandrindnod Wells. The bus itself was new in 1965 and withdrawn 1980. It still exists and can be seen at Wythall Museum.
 

DavidGrain

master brummie
I seem to remember that Midland Red buses used to have their home garage in small letters on the route blind...

If you look at the photo of a 159 bus leaving the Bus Station (posted by Stitcher post #134) you will see little letters on the left of the blind which show the home garage. I have tried enlarging the picture and I think it shows SH which was Sheepcote Street garage, It could have been DH for Digbeth)

Sticher's photo of a no.9 bus (post #131). The present no. 9 route from Birmingham to Stourbridge was a combination of BCT no. 9 City Centre to Quinton and Midland Red 130 Birmingham to Stourbridge although the route has changed as the 130 went via Mucklow Hill whereas the present route is via Spies Lane and Manor Lane.
 

Radiorails

master brummie
I meant to make comment about posts 134 and 136.
THA 153 (4155) was new in July 1954 and withdrawn in December 1967, I was one of a batch of 100 buses.
BHA 399C (5399) new in July 1965 withdrawn in March 1980. The bus still exists at Wythall.
 
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