Barry Bustler Bus Gets a Refresher

  Posted: 16.01.20 at 17:11 by The Editor

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Cardiff Transport Preservation group are helping to preserve a small bit of Welsh (Barry) bus history by refreshing the paint job on an original Bustler bus.

The previous paint had been on the bus for years and had started to flake. There was rust coming in and some rust on some of the panels.

Stagecoach in Blackwood has been tasked with helping the group bring the Bustler bus back to life.

The History of Bustler Buses and their use in Barry:

In 1936, with the purchase of White’s Motors, Western Welsh acquired much more work in the Barry and Vale area. White’s two small premises at Kendrick Road and St. Nicholas Road were deemed inadequate and steps were taken to erect a depot on a new site.

The 1950s, saw the depot allocation grow, it was deemed necessary to lease land to the east of the depot for further bus parking. The Kendrick Road garage, which contained the canteen, was to be sold therefore a new canteen and sports room was built above the Broad Street office block.

The mid-1980s saw deregulation and the introduction of BUSTLER minibuses.

Following a change of Company name to National Welsh in 1978 ‘One Man Operation’ came to Barry when 44 new duties were introduced in 1979.

This resulted in the loss of the ‘clippies,’ some of whom had over 35 years of service. 1986 saw Barry as the first depot to introduce the ‘Bustler,’ a minibus service where the drivers were on a lower rate of pay.

The year 1990 saw a downturn in company finances and redundancies were announced. Following the inevitable receivership in January 1992, various attempts at an employee buy-out for Barry Depot were made, but all failed. Other bids for the depot also failed and the doors were finally shut on Friday 7th August 1992 after 53 years of operation.

At various times following the sale of the site to the Vale of Glamorgan Council in 1993, the depot was used for the storage of steam locomotives, known as the ‘Barry Ten,’ for the Vale of Glamorgan Railway, trolleybuses for the Cardiff & South Wales Trolleybus Project and vehicles and artefacts for the Welsh Industrial & Maritime Museum. Later storage of furniture was allowed for the recycling charity, Track 2000.

Behind the scenes though, the CTPG were valiantly plugging away to secure the building for the storage and restoration of heritage buses. Their dream came to fruition in the summer of 2008.

A video created by the CTPG can be seen by clicking the video link.

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