FRD187 - BXA452B

Back in 1994, through friends, I got involved with the 'Stagecoach Fife Bus Club', which started both as a social organisation running bus trips and the like for Stagecoach Fife staff and anyone else interested enough to join it, and also with the long-term aim of preserving a particular bus then in service with the company (another story for another webpage!). However while on a trip to a bus rally at Gateshead in 1994, some of us (not me) were approached by someone belonging to Tyne & Wear CND with an offer of an former Alexanders Fife bus for sale. It was not long before we took a couple more trips back to the Newcastle area to inspect it, and since it was in good mechanical order, several of us (including me!) and the bus club itself all clubbed together to buy it. And now (a mere 14 years later!),, I have got around to setting up some webpages to tell the story of my first foray into bus preservation...


First Impressions

When we first saw it, FRD187 was stored behind bars in a bleak concrete building providing rented storage. Here are some vsnaps from our first two trips to see it in FRD187 At Newcastle.


All The Way Home

When we had inspected FRD187 it seemed serviceable, and the transaction to buy it went OK, but Newcastle isn't exactly next-door to Fife so there were a lot of miles to cover to get it home! Find out about FRD187s' Return To Fife!


Learning Curve

While some of us (including myself) had previous railway preservation experience, bus restoration was a new departure for just about all of us. And despite being mechanically sound, FRD 187 was in need of a lot of restoration! Find out how we got on in Initial Restoration At Cowdenbeath.

 


The Last Authentic Alexanders Fife Repaint?

After having done much internal restoration to FRD187 in parallel with repairing & priming the bodywork we could have attempted a repaint into a version of Alexanders Fife livery ourselves. However we found some people who were far better qualified to do this... Read the story of FRD187s' Repaint At Aberhill!

 


Back To The Grind!

Getting FRD187 repainted was not nearly the end of the restoration story, as the internal restoration wasn't finished. So the next part of the story is therefore Further Restoration At Cowdenbeath.

 


Mothballed!

There is a break in the story at this point. I stopped going to Cowdenbeath on Sundays in the autumn of 1996 (the reasons were personal, and now quite irrelevant), and not long after (cutting a long story short), FRD187 ended up stored at the Lathalmond Bus Museum. This was very disappointing, as we had had high hopes of getting it through an MOT soon and taking it to bus rallies, but instead my immediate friends and I became somewhat detached from FRD187 and turned instead to our many other preservation projects. Years went by, and FRD187 ended up in the museum display shed at Lathalmond due to the excellence of it's paintwork, where it was (I gather) not used or moved much. However the story resumes in 2005, as an unexpected chance came to get it out of storage...

 


On The Road Again (Sort Of)!

When the chance to get FRD187 out of storage, we wasted no time in arranging it. However FRD187 was not able to travel under it's own power this time as the brakes were not working. So we enlisted the help of a fellow-preservationist who owned a Recovery Vehicle similar to my own, and the Move To Methil was on!

 


The Last Lap.

By the time FRD187 was moved to Methil in 2005, we were far more experienced than we had been a decade or so earlier. Just as well really, as the paintwork needed some remedial work, the inside needed much cleaning and some repainting, and, worst of all, the brakes were not working. So we got straight to work on the Final Restoration At Methil.

 


MOT Time?

By early 2007, we felt we had got FRD187 roadworthy and booked it for an MOT at Perth. And it failed! However these days we don't give up that easily and simply fixed the one remaining problem. So we ended up going To Perth & Back, Twice!

 


FRD187 Let Loose.

Many of the better pictures of FRD187 I have taken since we first got it through an MOT in 2007 can be found in J-Files - Rallies & Events, but I do take a lot of pictures at other times, and a selection of the best of these can be found in the The FRD187 Galleries!


Click Here To Return To The J-Files


Disclaimer

These pages are owned and maintained by Jeffray Wotherspoon. The storage space for these pages is provided by the University Of Stirling, but it is in no way responsible for the contents of these pages. Please email me at jeff.wotherspoon@stir.ac.uk if you have any questions, comments, problems etc.