The Merseyside Transport Trust

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INFORMATION

Fleet number:
A267

Registration:
VKB 900
 
Chassis:
AEC Regent V D3RV267
 
Body: 
MCW Orion
 
Layout:
H33/29R
 
New:
September 1957
 
Current Status:
Restored and in use

A267(1)
A267(2)
A267(3)

In James Street, in the 1960s, then at South Castle Street in the 1970s and at Woolton on our Running Day in 2007.

A267 was delivered in September 1957 and was allocated on delivery to Speke Garage, which had only just opened. It was one of 125 MCCW bodied AEC Regent V D3RVs delivered to Liverpool Corporation between 1956 and 1959. They all had AEC A218 9.6 litre engines and synchromesh gearboxes, and engine bonnet, grille and built up nearside wing, incorporating the sidelight, which was to Liverpool's own specification. The bodywork was a four-bay version of Metro Cammell's 'Orion' body which had a seating capacity of 62, this being achieved by having a rearward facing bench seat for five at the front of the lower saloon.

Thirty of these vehicles, A203-A232, were delivered with MCCW body frames, the panelling and general finishing being completed by the Corporation's own workforce at Edge Lane Works. A221 and A228-A232 were finished in anodized aluminium (similar to our preseved A40) which was left unpainted except for green relief around the side windows and a green waist band. Due to other commitments at Edge lane works ,the last of the Liverpool-finished examples did not enter service until late 1959.

A267 continued to be allocated to Speke until 1964 when it was delicensed and underwent its first major overhaul and repaint. Once completed it returned to service in January 1965, allocated now to Walton.

It passed to the M.P.T.E in December 1969, remaining at Walton until its second overhaul in May 1972. After a short spell at Green Lane (Stanley Bus Park) between November 1974 and February 1976, it returned to Walton for its final few months in operation. A267 was finally withdrawn on 1st July 1976, claiming the title of being the last Liverpool Corporation AEC in service. After withdrawal in 1976, it was donated to the Mersey & Calder B.P.G. for preservation.

After a cosmetic repaint back to the original style two band livery it was rallied extensively throughout the country visiting Dunbar, Weymouth and Brighton amongst many others. It was exhibited at the Steamport Railway Museum in Southport for a number of years, followed by a period at the successful 'Large Object Store', a Merseyside County Council funded museum in Liverpool.

When the museum closed in 1990, A267 was inspected with the view of returning it to M.O.T. standard but it was discovered that the king pins were badly worn. New ones were manufactured and fitted and work commenced on restoring the bodywork. The badly flaking paint (applied on its last overhaul in 1972) on the interior ceilings was painstakingly stripped back to bare metal and repainted. Extensive body rot was discovered in the Met-Cam bodywork, which resulted in repairs to the front bulkhead and the replacement of the rear body cross-member and the rear bulkhead along with the platform bearers.

Dry rot in the lower saloon floor saw that being totally replaced, taking the opportunity to replace the badly corroded rear bench seat well. Finally a large proportion of the exterior panelwork was also replaced. Once the bodywork was completed, the bus was prepared and finally painted back into its original darker shade of green with two cream bands.

Whilst checking the rear brakes, it was discovered that the nearside half shaft had twisted and further investigation found that the differential bearings had come adrift from their mountings. A replacement differential was obtained from North's, the handy dealer at Sherburn-in-Elmet in Yorkshire, but it was found to be out of a later Regent V and and therefore not interchangeable. With the mechanical department burning the midnight oil, both old and replacement differentials were stripped and a good one made out of the two.

With only a few days before the target of the 1998 AEC Rally at Nottingham remaining A267 was submitted for its first M.O.T. In over 16 years which it passed with flying colours. The day came and A267 made its way to the AEC Rally in the company of E1, the group's other Regent V, the first time either vehicle had been to a rally for many years - you wait for ages and two came along together! Both vehicles performed faultlessly and created a lot of interest. ,A267 also attended a number of other rallies during 1998.

After a couple of years of inactivity, 2003 saw A267 get a replacement engine, this time an ex-Ministry 11.3 litre unit, and was MOT tested again at the beginning of June 2003. A267 continues to be MOT tested each year and attends many MTT events.