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Midland Red Bus Routes

Radiorails

master brummie
Around 1981, The 'Friendly Midland Red' as many knew and loved it, with de-regulation, was broken up into five parts. Midland Red, North, South, East, West and Express. These companies have undergone further name changes since. Behind the Leyland National bus is one of the notorious Ford Transit 'bread van' buses first introduced on Devon General after that company was privatised. Hard to believe that these uncomfortable, crowded and highly sprung vehicles travelled longer distances, not just local estate to town runs. It was a great relief to most bus users when they disappeared and 'real' buses re-appeared.
 

Heartland

master brummie
The use of these smaller vehicles did become common at one time- the said vehicle was on the 93 service...100801.jpg
 

Radiorails

master brummie
Post #22 shows a Midi-bus. They were fine for local services. But the 'bread van', nicely shown in Post #23, was grim for older passengers and anyone carrying more than one bag of shopping!
Believe it, or not, I have followed a fully loaded 'bread van' (the last one at night, probably full of revellers) at 60 mph.!!
 

nickcc101

master brummie
Had similar "bread vans" here in Cornwall when I worked for First Devon and Cornwall' as it was. They were certainly flying machines compared to other Mercedes midibuses in the fleet but it was a bit like driving a very noisy shed on wheels.
 

DavidGrain

master brummie
Leicester was one of the places I visited on a Midland Red 5 shilling Child's Day Anywhere ticket long before the the NBC era shown in the video clip above. If I remember correctly there were three bus stations in Leicester which I managed to visit.
 

Bradbury

New Member
I have been racking my brains trying to remember the BMMO routes from Sutton to Birmingham and Sutton Surburban services. I remember S67, S76 to Six Ways from the Beggars bush via Court Lane & Goosemoore Lane respectively, same bus everyhalf hour alternate journeys and the S73 which ran down Chester Road to the Yenton, then went to Boldmere, came back and went back to either New Oscott or Parson & Clerk. The 107, 109 & 113 were old friends as they all went through New Oscott. 110, 112 were for Lichfield and Tamworth, not quite sure which was which and the X99 in the single deck red roofed GHAs was also a regular school holiday trip. S73 to the Yenton and then the X99, but coming back as the S73, S76 and S67 finished at 8.00 pm, sometimes meant a journey on to either six ways for the 11 and 5a or Aston Cross for the 3x Tram and the 5a. I wonder how many 13 to 15 year olds with nothing to do in August would do that now? However point of enquiry what were the destinations for the 101 to 106, 108. was there a 111? and thro to 117 (I travelled 118 & 119 regularly). E'en as I make this pitiful plea, I know that someone has what I do not have in my Midland Onibus collection the route details. People writing about the Midland Red never put rote details in the books.
Bob
You missed the S61 from Digbeth to Gibbons road, via Mere Green, Sutton Coldfield. 15mins past the hour. Number changed in 1966 and became the 103 to Roughly, an extra 7 stops to the Roughly terminal at Slade road and Weeford road.
 

silverwheels2

New Member
I have been racking my brains trying to remember the BMMO routes from Sutton to Birmingham and Sutton Surburban services. I remember S67, S76 to Six Ways from the Beggars bush via Court Lane & Goosemoore Lane respectively, same bus everyhalf hour alternate journeys and the S73 which ran down Chester Road to the Yenton, then went to Boldmere, came back and went back to either New Oscott or Parson & Clerk. The 107, 109 & 113 were old friends as they all went through New Oscott. 110, 112 were for Lichfield and Tamworth, not quite sure which was which and the X99 in the single deck red roofed GHAs was also a regular school holiday trip. S73 to the Yenton and then the X99, but coming back as the S73, S76 and S67 finished at 8.00 pm, sometimes meant a journey on to either six ways for the 11 and 5a or Aston Cross for the 3x Tram and the 5a. I wonder how many 13 to 15 year olds with nothing to do in August would do that now? However point of enquiry what were the destinations for the 101 to 106, 108. was there a 111? and thro to 117 (I travelled 118 & 119 regularly). E'en as I make this pitiful plea, I know that someone has what I do not have in my Midland Onibus collection the route details. People writing about the Midland Red never put rote details in the books.
Bob
 

silverwheels2

New Member
You missed the S61 from Digbeth to Gibbons road, via Mere Green, Sutton Coldfield. 15mins past the hour. Number changed in 101 and became the 103 to Roughly, an extra 7 stops to the Roughly terminal at Slade road and Weeford road.
silverwheels2. bus route 104 Cannock to New Street via Norton Canes, Brownhills, A452 to Hardwick Arms, then Streetly Stn Streetly Lane to Four Oaks, Sutton Coldfield. We would then travel directly to Bham behind the 110 from Tamworth. Yenton sixways Erdington Aston past HP Sauce factory ABC Studios?? into Bull Ring bus station. I last drove this route in 1965.Forgot to mention where the cigarette packets were on the road.!!!!!
You missed the S61 from Digbeth to Gibbons road, via Mere Green, Sutton Coldfield. 15mins past the hour. Number changed in 1966 and became the 103 to Roughly, an extra 7 stops to the Roughly terminal at Slade road and Weeford road.
 

Radiorails

master brummie
They look late 1920's early 1930's to me, but I can't give a closer date. Someone will I am sure.
The 'motor' services was an older style of advertising description. In the later nineteen thirties and post WW2 the Red did not use the word motor as far as I know in adverts.
 

DavidGrain

master brummie
I agree with Alan (Radiorails) that they are definitely pre WWII. They could even date to the period immediately after WWI because under the 1914 agreement with Birmingham Corporation when the Midland Red transferred its services in Birmingham to the Corporation, the numbers below 100 were reserved for the Corporation and above 100 for the Midland Red.

I do not recognise any of these route numbers. For example I have always known the Bewdley service as 133 and 127 as Birmingham to Oldbury via Tat Bank.

One Midland Red route number which still exists after more than 100 years is the no. 9, Birmingham to Bearwood, then to Quinton and now extended to Stourbridge taking over Midland Red route 130.
 

perry commoner

master brummie
As a youngster living close to the 107 route, I recall a BMMO double decker bus type with a front sweeping bodywork from the upstairs windows to above the driver cab window. Presumably one of BMMO designs dating from the 1930s. I have always kept my eye open for a pic of this type but so far without success.
 

RobT

Acemeccanoman
Here are some more Route Guide Nos from the same period
456 & 457 Leicester to Welford
500 Leicester to Ashby and Burton
504 Loughborough, Shepshed & Coalville
503 & 526 Nuneaton and Licester via Market Bosworth
525 Nuneaton, Hinkley, Barwell, Shilton, Leicester

All are for MIDLAND "RED" MOTOR SERVICES

All are marked on rear
Chief Traffic Offices:
Bearwood, Birmingham
Telephone 3300 Midland
O.C.Power Traffic Manager
 

RobT

Acemeccanoman
As a youngster living close to the 107 route, I recall a BMMO double decker bus type with a front sweeping bodywork from the upstairs windows to above the driver cab window. Presumably one of BMMO designs dating from the 1930s. I have always kept my eye open for a pic of this type but so far without success.
Is it this one an SOS "DD"?

Photos below courtesy of BMMO marketing & publicity
 

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DavidGrain

master brummie
These were were later classified as REDD (Rear Entrance Double-Decker) and FEDD (Front entrance Double Decker). Later FEDDs had a flatter front than the one shown in the photo posted by RobT.

I think that there were only 50 REDDs built and I don't think I ever saw one. When I was little the FEDDs were the standard double deckers on my local routes although there were rear entrance wartime buses including the Guy Arabs on the Wolverhampton Road 125 service and then the D5s came along. The D5Bs were the first with the platform doors at the rear.
 

Radiorails

master brummie
I saw many of these ugly looking vehicles. Despite their acknowledged experimentation and progressive developments Midland Red did possess some quite quaint looking vehicles pre WW2.
There were two similar batches of fifty buses that were double deck, the first were HA 8001 - HA 8050 (1370 - 1419*) based on a prototype HA 7329 (1319) of 1931. They were spilt between four body builders delivered 1932/33 and were rear entrance. They survived until 1948 - 50. Eight were built for the Potteries Motor Traction.
The second fifty, HA 9401 - HA 9450 (1536 - 1585) of 1934. The prototype was HA 9400 (1446), These were front entrance.
They lasted until 1848 - 1953. * Fleet numbers allocated during WW2
 
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