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Buses and Coaches in and around Walton-on-Thames and Weybridge, 1891–1986 (Hardback)

Transport Photographic Books Colour Books 20th Century 19th Century Buses

By Laurie James
Imprint: Pen & Sword Transport
Pages: 208
Illustrations: 200 colour & black and white illustrations & maps
ISBN: 9781526776051
Published: 29th June 2021


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Although the Surrey towns of Walton-on-Thames and Weybridge were for many years served by the London bus network, there were also a number of small scale locally based operators running bus services, before selling out to London Transport in the 1930s.

Such companies ran coaches for private hire, contracts and pleasure outings, commencing just after the First World War.

This book seeks to newly record the history of these proprietors and put the activities of the London General Omnibus Company and later London Transport into local context.

The story starts in the 1890s with horse drawn buses linking with the local railway stations and carries the reader through the dawn of the motor era, the rise of the charabanc, entrepreneurial opportunities in the 1920s and consolidation in the 1930s, World War Two and the gradual decline of bus services from the 1960s. It culminates in a return to a de-regulated operating environment in 1986.

Capturing the story of Ben Stanley's Coaches (amongst other pioneers) by using primary source material , the book covers more than just routes and vehicles - it attempts to show how road passenger transport was influenced by local social historic and economic activity.

A range of high-quality illustrations, including some in colour, is provided in this very comprehensive volume which provides good value for the price charged.

Peter White, Journal of the Road Transport History Association - September 2021

It all makes a fascinating read about the history of bus services in a small local area.

PSV Circle - August 2021

This is a very well written and thoroughly researched work, copiously illustrated.

Andy Wood, Wessex Transport Society bi-monthly Review

About Laurie James

Laurie James has been a resident of the Walton-on-Thames area for thirty-five years and has a keen interest in the historical aspects of the bus and coach industry.

Whilst the story of major bus operators has been generally well recorded, he is keen that a proper record should be preserved for the smaller, often family run concerns.

Laurie is a committee member of the Omnibus Society's Provincial Historical Research Group and for many years has been Local Bus Service Manager in Surrey County Council's Passenger Transport Team.

He has written or co-authored seven previous bus history books.

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