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The London Leylands (Kindle)

The Last Years of RTL and RTW Operation in London

Transport History London Trams and Buses

By Jim Blake
Imprint: Pen & Sword Transport
File Size: 104.0 MB (.mobi)
Pages: 165
ISBN: 9781473861435
eBook Released: 3rd April 2018

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LONDON'S FAMOUS RT-TYPE BUSES were an iconic symbol of our Capital city in the 1950s, before being superseded by the Routemasters. Most were built between 1947 and 1954 to replace worn-out pre-war and wartime buses, as well as our remaining trams. More than 7,000 were built in all and although London Transport favoured A.E.C. chassis, which the first batches of RTs had, so pressing was the need for new buses that not enough could be supplied by that manufacturer to match demand. Therefore Leyland Motors were contracted to adapt their Leyland "Titan" PD2 chassis to fit bodies that, for the most part, were identical with those on RTs. The result was the 1,631-strong RTL class, together with the 500 RTWs, which had bodies also built by Leyland to the same general design, were built between 1948 and 1954. Always in a minority compared to the 4,825-strong RT class, these Leyland buses had a character all of their own, perhaps personified by their louder engine note. They also had a reputation for being heavier on their steering than the RTs, making them unpopular with staff, and therefore general withdrawal of them commenced in 1958, taking almost ten years to complete (in November 1968), whereas the RTs soldiered on until April 1979. During the RTL and RTW class buses' final years, Jim Blake was out and about photographing them throughout London. A selection of his photographs of them, most previously unpublished, is presented here. Nearly fifty years after their demise from London's streets, the RTLs and RTWs still have a firm following amongst bus enthusiasts and preservationists alike, and it is to them that this book is dedicated!

Comprehensive photographic coverage.

Buses, July 2018 – reviewed by Alan Millar

This is a very detailed and informative book, of much interest to London Transport enthusiasts and others.

PSV Circle
 Jim Blake

About Jim Blake

Jim Blake was born at the end of 1947, and he soon developed a passionate interest in railways, buses and trolleybuses. In 1965, he bought a colour cine-camera, with which he captured what is now very rare footage of long-lost buses, trolleybuses and steam locomotives. These transport photographs have been published in various books and magazines. Jim also started the North London Transport Society and, in conjunction with the group, he has compiled and published a number of books on the subject since 1977, featuring many of the 100,000 or so transport photographs he has taken over the years.

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