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Our Vintage Routemaster Buses

The story that never gets old

In 2014 we purchased our first Routemaster Bus that had started its life in the 1960’s, serving passengers in London.  

We quickly set to work on the bus conversion, installing a fully functional kitchen onboard. One year later, in 2015, we began our Afternoon Tea Bus Tours in Edinburgh, and the following year we expanded into Glasgow. 

The Routemaster buses were introduced by London Transport in 1956 and carried passengers around the city until  they were decommissioned in 2005. Their purpose was to replace London’s trolleybuses. They have long been considered the quintessential symbol of British transport and continue to appear in tourist paraphernalia to this day. 

Perhaps they owe their success to their innovative design. In the 1940’s the Routemaster build team were given a brief to produce a lighter vehicle that would consume less fuel and be more efficient to run. As a result the buses were made from lightweight aluminium, and the team used specialist techniques developed in aircraft production from World War II to install power steering, a fully automatic gearbox and power-hydraulic brakes. 

The open ‘jump on and off’ platform meant minimal boarding time and optimal security under the watchful eye of the bus conductor. Albeit the passengers were exposed to the elements! 

A variety of Routemaster models were built. Our first bus, the JJD 549D began service in 1966 servicing passengers in Hackney and Aldenham. In 2005 after being decommissioned it became a hospitality bus until 2014, when we became its proud owners. We named the bus ‘Bradley’ after our son. 

We currently have a fleet of four Routemasters and one Leyland Titan.  Each bus is a different model and we’ve bestowed names on each (of course…..). They’re part of the family now. You might spot a recurring theme in the naming process. Tells you a bit about us: 

JJD 407D or Rosie after our much missed first Labradoodle

CUV 278C or Nancy after our beloved mum

TCK 847 or Maisie after our crazy 2nd Labradoodle

JJD 482C aka Rory after our 3rd Labradoodle 

The moment you step on-board our vintage Routemaster you’ll instantly step back in time to the grace and charm of Britain’s Swinging Sixties’. To a world full of freedom, hope and promise, where anything and everything was possible. 

We look forward to welcoming you aboard!