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Earlier this month a number of vintage buses took part in the annual charity bus service that runs from Warminster to the abandoned village of Imber on military land at Salisbury Plain. Below are a selection of photos from the event. Thanks to all of the photographers featured for granting us permission to use these photos on the site.

First journey of the day

First Berkshire RMC1510, Bath Bus Co RML2665 and Metroline LT24 on the first journey of the day towards Imber. Photo by Brian Bell

On Tinkers Track

Another view of the buses on Tinkers Track. Photo by Brian Bell

LT24 on Sack Hill

LT24 on Sack Hill. Photo by Brian Bell

Heading up the tank track at Gore Cross

Heading up the tank track at Gore Cross. Photo by Brian Bell

Bath Bus Co RML 2665 at Chitterne

Bath Bus Co RML 2665 at Chitterne. Photo by Brian Bell

Arriva London RM5 at Brazen Bottom

Arriva London RM5 at Brazen Bottom. Photo by Brian Bell

Entering the Range at Imber

LT24 at the entry to the ranges. Photo by Trevor Haynes

Crossing the ranges

LT24 crossing the Imber Ranges. Photo by Trevor Haynes

A dusty bus

LT24 (and Brian Bell) at Warminster station – already very dusty after just 2 trips over the ranges. Photo by John Scragg.

At New Zealand Farm Camp

At New Zealand Farm Camp, with First Berkshire RMC1510 at the front. Photo by Brian Bell.

First Berkshire RMC1510 at Chitterne

A dusty First Berkshire RMC1510 at Chitterne

Bath Bus Co RML2665 outside Imber

Bath Bus Co RML2665 outside Imber. Photo by Brian Bell

The last run

The last trip is traditionally operated by as many buses as possible. With LT24 and RM5 on their way back to London, the five remaining buses line up at Tinkers Track. Photo by Brian Bell

LT24 at Hampstead Heath

Back in London, LT24 at Hampstead Heath, still with Imber 23a adverts. Photo by Graham Smith

Thanks again to all the Imber photographers for granting us permission to use their photos here. For those who have yet to make the Imber trip, we heartily recommend watching out for it next year.

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There are 18 comments on this article
  1. Anonymous says:

    Just wondering why it was called 23A ? – Does that A stand for anything or have any significance ?

  2. Greg Tingey says:

    Looks like it was a beautiful day.
    I wonder how hot it got inside LT24?

  3. timbeau says:

    Apparently there used to be a route 23 between Amesbury and Warminster, skirting the military area.

    http://leondaniels.blogspot.co.uk/2010/09/by-bus-to-imber.html

  4. Michael Meilton says:

    It did not get very hot inside LT24, with a good turn of speed and the rear doors open there was quite a draft. What proved there was a good breeze was you could see it – or at least all the dust that was in it. The photos show how dusty the buses got – that was inside as well as outside! An excellent day with over £2,300 raised for Charity. The 23A route number was dreamt up as it was not too far away from the old 23 Route that, as mentioned earlier, went from Warminster to Amesbury.

  5. David G says:

    Nice view of the fields

  6. Anonymous says:

    I can’t help thinking that these London buses, particularly the new incarnation of the Routemaster make a bizarre sight in these country locations. Incidentally, I heard from a ‘conductor’ on a route 24 bus that the number 11 will be next to make the change.

  7. timbeau says:

    Anon 1837:

    The changeover is already underway – officially from yesterday, although LOTS reports one of them was out and about on Friday evening. Unlike the 24, the behemoths will be phased in one by one, but the changeover should be complete by the end of the month.

    Nos 9 and 390 next. Like taxis, they seem not to want to go south of the river.

  8. timbeau says:

    Well, that went well …….
    http://metrouk2.files.wordpress.com/2013/09/ad_116463793.jpg?w=650&h=432&crop=1
    (Sunday afternoon – eyewitness reports suggest the NB4L ran into the back of a queue of traffic, damaging two other buses and several cars)

  9. Greg Tingey says:

    There are reports that the bus may have had a serious control failure … & TfL are being extremely quiet about it.

    Wasn’t there a fuss, a few years ago, about some Dennis buses getting stuck throttles @ low-speed & causing bus-station collisions?

    IF this is a computer / fly-by-wire / controlls fault, it could be very serious indeed.

  10. Littlejohn says:

    There may be more to this serious accident than is immediately apparent (or admitted), according to the Londonist article here: http://londonist.com/2013/09/three-seriously-injured-in-new-bus-for-london-smash.php. Also click on both the ‘pictures’ and ’show’ links in the article for more photos and 2 more links.

  11. timbeau says:

    @Londonist
    “Not yet known how it came to be off route”?
    http://www.tfl.gov.uk/gettingaround/28368.aspx

  12. John Bull says:

    It’s certainly all very curious.

    I’m avoiding writing about it at the moment until more information is available, mainly to avoid adding to any speculation.

  13. stimarco says:

    @Greg Tingey:

    I remember their “Dart” model being mentioned specifically, so I suspect it was due to this:

    http://www.warrantyguide.co.uk/vehicle-recall-FF1DA29AABA1FCB600256D9C003D917B-dennis-dart-recall

    Looks like Captain Cockup paid a visit to Belfast at some point, with “hilarious” results.

    (There’s a sitcom in this…)

  14. stimarco says:

    Correction: the Darts were built in Guildford, not Belfast.

    Sorry. all that NBfL stuff got me confused. (Which, admittedly, isn’t hard to do.)

  15. Greg Tingey says:

    Well, L-R contributors/commentators were much in evidence, yesterday.
    Later today, I’ll try downloading some (not especially good) pictures & forwarding them
    Unless someoene else wants to do a quick write-up?
    [ We went Warminster – Imber – Lavington (pub) – through Tilshead – Chitterne (pub) – Imber half hour stop – Warminster. ]
    Next time, if possible Tilshead & NZ Camp will be on the agenda.

  16. LadyBracknell says:

    Eek, I thought the Imber run was going to be on the bank holiday weekend. I had intended to go, but then changed my mine. Such a pity because it looked like good weather unlike last year’s torrential downpour.

  17. Greg Tingey says:

    LB
    Superb day – except at one point it was a Borisbus or nothing.
    The air-con struggled, but I was soaking by the time I staggered out @ Imber itself …..
    The open-topper was delightful.

  18. Greg Tingey says:

    … as can bee seen from Diamond Geezer’s post and pictures
    In one of which, I appear (!)

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