Leyland Tiger 250 - 1984
57 coach seats
Still looking modern despite now being nearly 30 years old, our Tiger offers a warmer, faster option to move people about, whilst still reflecting a significant part of the London scene by way of its commuter services. The Southend to London service was born out of the rail strikes and commuters needs to get into London. It started as a smallish operation but quickly grew with up to 60 coaches on the daily run, making them a familiar sight in London’s City and West End. The success led to the purchase of some exceptional brand new coaches including six Tigers, of which this our one. Heavy road works on the A13 led to the coach commuters defecting back slowly to the trains and the eventual cessation of the service completely. Now restored back to the famous blue and yellow of those days the vehicle provides a reminder of a successful service that has come and gone.
Leyland Tiger 250 History:
Commuter services into London have always played a part in the London bus scene and none became quite as obvious as municipally run Southend Transports efforts on the X1 route in the 1980’s. Born out of industrial action on the railways and started as an alternative on strike days the service grew every day. The opportunity of cheap fares and significant savings particularly on season tickets from the local line known as ‘the misery line’ let Southend Transport take a real stake in the market.
To cope with demand vehicles were hired in from all over, and buses in any kind of livery could be seen on a daily basis, however such was the success of the service that the council decided to order new buses for the route and six Duple bodied Caribbean’s, with Leyland Tiger Chassis were duly ordered. 250 was one of this batch and entered service in July 1984 on the still massively utilised route.However, slowly but surely the train line improved and added to the fact that roadworks around the A406/A13 junction meant the service could be delayed for hours meant year by year the service started to contract. When Southend Transport was sold to Arriva plc further cut backs came and the service was a mere shadow of itself and 250 with its sisters were transferred away from Southend to pastures new in North Essex and Hertfordshire. Withdrawn by Arriva in 2004 it was acquired by Ensign and returned to the famous blue and yellow of its X1 heyday.
Date of first registration: 6 July 1984
Chassis: Leyland Tiger
Chassis number: 8400134
Body: Duple, Caribbean
Body Number: 8370/0299
Seating: 57 seats