We're hoping to run 255 this year after its enforced rest last year, in addition to moving ahead with an upper body repaint.
Bodywork progress during 2019 - seems ages ago!
The bus has enjoyed a bit of attention recently.
Plans to return the outside appearance to something nearer the original condition are progressing well.
The top image (right) shows her when still quite young. It has the CCFL logo on the side and a normal sized advert panel.
Additionally, she sports a full set of sun shades above the windows, including the front upper deck.
The other significant difference are the roof mounted lights, which can just be seen proud of the domes.
From this and other period images, it would appear that the mudguards were also body coloured. This would change the appearance, especially from the front.
With all that in mind, and with a full set of sunshades in hand, we sought out our friendly body specialist who set about fixing them to the bodywork, using the original plans and some period images. Some of the shades had seen better days and quite a bit of tlc was required to straighten them out. The method of fixing was also determined.
Before these were fixed onto the body, the programme of side window refurbishment was completed. Now, the windows stay up and keep out the draughts and rain!
Once the shades were fixed on, they looked quite natural, although unpainted for now. We're still not sure about the roof lights, but...
The side blind above the platform, which is painted over, has never been an issue. However, due to the livery change, it was agreed that we should bring it back to life.
Images show that the original affair had set back window glass without a rubber surround. The only way to accomplish this was to ask our body specialist to construct a bespoke panel based on the original plans. You will see from the images that he has done a great job. A job for the future would be to get blind gear back in the box and working. He has been asked to look at the rear box too...
Once all this work is done we are actively looking for someone to handpaint the bodywork.
Oh - finally, the Sagres advert will remain, but will be proportioned to fit within the five central bays.
With all the work being done, we thought it would be nice to give 255 a bit of a run.
Sandtoft Transport Museum were having a celebration weekend over the bank holiday, so we thought it would be nice to visit the site. Their craftsmen were responsible for refurbishing the interior of 255 to a high standard (chosen because of the bus' resemblance to that of a tram/trolleybus interior).
We were made very welcome and we carried some of the visitors around the circuit on the bus as a treat.
The following day (Monday), we ventured across the hills (sometimes at a walking pace!) to Crich Tramway Museum, where we were admitted into the site and included as part of their display.
This is where most of the images on this page were taken.
So, before the world stopped, we took 255 to Kings Lynn to be given a quote for the repaint and some remedial work.
That never happened, but we are now awaiting a new date for this to go ahead.
This may wait until later in the year as we'd like to give her a run out and airing at some rallies during the late summer of 2021.