XUS 575S - Leyland Atlantean AN68A/1R

 

Vehicle Details:

Registration Number:    XUS 575S
Chassis Type:   Leyland Atlantean AN68A/1R
Chassis Number:    7700878
Body Type And Seating:    Alexander AL H45/33F (originally)
Body Number:     AL59/3775/104
Date New:    19 October 1977
Original Operator (Fleet Number):    Greater Glasgow PTE (LA1204)
     

Vehicle Information:

 

This vehicle was new as Greater Glasgow PTE LA1204, entering service from Larkfield depot in October 1977. It was part of the last batch of Atlanteans before the improved high-drive cab position was introduced (LA1251 up), and at this stage the attractive, but inherently weak, panoramic-windowed bodywork style was continued as the major body defects had not really come to light. GGPTE became Strathclyde PTE in December 1980, and the bus moved to Gartcraig garage in September 1982, then to Knightswood in December that year, to Ibrox the following August, back to Gartcraig in May 1984, then to Parkhead at the end of August 1986.

Strathclyde Buses Ltd. took over services at deregulation in October 1986, but LA1204 remained at Parkhead. It moved to the GCT low cost unit in September 1996 (officially renumbered GLA1204) for just one month before October withdrawal, although it remained in the reserve fleet until 19½ years old, being sold in April 1997.

Most Atlanteans withdrawn by FirstBus-owned SBL at this time were scrapped, but LA1204 was sold to Glasgow City Council, for whom it was fitted out as an exhibition centre, receiving an overall yellow paint scheme (including vinyls on the windows), and lettering for the Council's 'Fit For Life' campaign.

After five years based at the cleansing depot at Polmadie, mostly in the open air, the bus was donated to the Glasgow Bus Museum in November 2002. As the GBM charity was wound up, the bus was privately purchased in January 2004 and is still stored at Bridgeton Bus Garage, now under the control of the Glasgow Vintage Vehicle Trust.

Full restoration work to the outside of the bus and repairs to the vehicle structure are now under way, with the ultimate aim of restoring at least the exterior of the bus to Strathclyde Buses orange and black livery. After its work as an exhibition centre, restoration of the interior will be a major challenge to be considered in the future.

 

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