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Corgi 1:76 AEC Double Decker Bus: Stevensons, Yellow

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Corgi 1:76 AEC Double Decker Bus: Stevensons, Yellow

Corgi 1:76 AEC Double Decker Bus: Stevensons, Yellow

Diecast metal with plastic parts

The AEC Regent III RT was one of the variants of the AEC Regent III. It was a double-decker bus produced jointly between AEC and London Transport. It was the standard red London bus during the 1950s and continued to outnumber the better known Routemaster throughout the 1960s.

The prototype (London Transport RT 1) was built in 1938 with an AEC 8.8-litre engine (a stopgap measure until the new 9.6-litre was available) and air-operated pre-selective gearbox. Finding a satisfactory British substitute for the German air compressor, bought from Bosch, was to cause problems for AEC, once war broke out. A prototype chassis was placed into service, disguised as an old vehicle. It carried a secondhand open-staircase body previously carried on Leyland Titan (fleet number TD 111), dating from 1931. Thus bodied, RT 1 entered service in July 1938 as ST 1140, even though it was nothing like a standard ST vehicle. It continued in service until December 1938.

While the chassis was on trial, a new body was constructed at London Transport's Chiswick Works. Its four-bay body resembled that of the Roe Leeds City Pullman body exhibited at the 1937 Commercial Motor Show, though the overall impression of modern design and the features included marked a big step forward. This body replaced the old one on RT 1 and the bus re-entered service in 1939.

On 11 September 1926, John Stevenson commenced operating a bus service from Uttoxeter to Burton-upon-Trent. In 1971, the business passed to John's son George, who was shortly joined by his son David. In 1977, the fleet comprised 40 buses.

In 1983, George sold his 50% share of the business to Julian Peddle. On 1 October 1985, Stevensons merged its bus operations with that of East Staffordshire District Council, with Stevenson and Peddle owning 51% and the council 49%. In 1987, Stevensons took a shareholding in Midland Fox including the Swadlincote depot.

In February 1992, Stevensons acquired a shareholding in Rhonda Buses. This was sold to Stagecoach South Wales in November 1993. In June 1994, the business was purchased by British Bus and today is part of Arriva Midlands. At this point Stevensons owned 270 buses and were the largest independent bus operator in the United Kingdom.



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