Leyland Cub - C4 - BXD628
A beautiful mid-1930's coach
A unique vehicle from a bygone age. Painstakingly restored by us to concourse standard over a four year period C4 is a truly unique vehicle that is now available to hire. Finished in the condition it would have been delivered in back in the 1930’s the vehicle exudes the elegance and slower pace of life of the 1930’s.
With the acquisition of many small operators when the new London Transport was formed in 1933 left the new Board running a plethora of small buses, many aged and others at best very non standard. Small buses of 20 seats or left were required but what to buy for this use was the problem facing LT. Amongst this collection was a Leyland Cub, which presumably got better reviews than many of the other vehicles now in the fleet as a new chassis was purchased to be bodied by London Transport to its own design and became C1.
They obviously liked the new vehicle as an order for 74 more was placed for the country area in 1935 which took the numbers C2-75 with the already owned vehicle tagging on at the end and getting the fleet number C76. The following year a further 22 were added for the ‘red’ Central Area becoming C77-98. The final batch of Cubs were unusually half decks to allow for luggage to be stored under the raised deck and were used for the nocturnal Inter Station service that linked up London’s main train termini.
The vehicles be it, Central, Country or Interstation all gave good service in hard times. The war saw some of the country vehicles operate in the central area and the Interstations move on to war work transporting acts for the entertainment organisation ENSA around the country. By 1950 plans were however being drawn up to replace this successful batch and 1953 would see them displaced by another small London bus class the GS.
For more on this class why not visit Ian's Bus Stop
Cub C4 History:
C4 is the earliest survivor of the Cub batches coming from the initial order for the Country Area. Due to bus building demands London Transport was unable to build the bodies themselves so the work was contracted out to Short Bros of Rochester, more famous for building their flying boats such as the Sunderland. Entering service at Addlestone Garage in April 1935, C4 was destined to have a very stable London life. Moving in June 1938 to Chelsham she would remain at this garage working on the routes 464, 453, 465 and 485 for the rest of her working life until finally being withdrawn in October 1953.
Sold to a fruit picking farm in 1955 she worked moving staff around until withdrawal following a mechanical issue. Sold to the dealer Voakes of Billinghurst she deteriorated with many of her sisters in the yard until saved. Passing through a number of owners along the way she was eventually acquired by Ensign in 2007. Following a major restoration taking nearly four years, the vehicle eventually ran again at the Ensignbus 2012 running day.