The Vehicles

Western’s 425 Integral’s were stunning looking machines and thoroughly deserved their “Bullets” nickname. SH108 J8WSB is seen here at Kilmarnock depot prior to delivery to Stranraer for their Belfast, Stranraer – London Citylink services. (© David Toy)

Western Scottish operated a whole host of both common and exclusive vehicle types during it’s time as part of the Scottish Bus Group.

Leyland Leopard and Seddon Pennine 7 Alexander “Y” type single deckers were very much the norm for basic bus operation, throughout the Western operating area, whilst Seddon Pennine 7 Alexander “T” types were the preferred coach for private hire and local tour work.

The express services required more robust vehicles and the Volvo B10M and Leyland Tiger chassis were bought in large numbers for these duties. On the double decker front the Daimler / Leyland Fleetline was the preferred vehicle although, following the Fleetlines demise, the Dennis Dominator and Volvo Ailsa did prove popular with Western, and later on, Clydeside Scottish.

Fleet Numbering System

Western SMT originally introduced an official fleet numbering system back in 1949 which adopted a simple numbering scheme prefixed by two letters, the first denoting the vehicle allocation and the second identifying the vehicle type. This system was continued by Western Scottish, on its creation in June 1985, and year letter codes were also added above the fleet number to indicate the age of the vehicle, e.g. “B” was 1960, “C2” was 1972 and “C9” was 1979 etc.

Western’s vehicle ‘type’ codes were as follows:

A – AEC Single deck (unitil 1964)
A – Ailsa Double Deck (from 1978)
A – Scania Coach (from 1986)
B – Bedford Single deck (until 1954)
B – Bristol Double deck
C – AEC Double deck
D – Leyland Double deck (until 1980)
D – Dennis Double deck (from 1983)
D – Dodge Minibus (from 1987)
E – Bedford Single deck (from 1970)
G – Guy Single deck
H – Hestair Duple / Plaxton 425 Integral
I – Albion Single Deck
L – Leyland Single Deck
M – MCW Coach
M – MAN powered Van Hool (1986 only)
N – Albion Double deck (until 1979)
N – Dennis Single deck (from 1983)
R – Daimler / Leyland Fleetline
S – Dennis Single deck (until 1957)
S – Seddon Single Deck (from 1975)
T – Bristol Single deck (from 1957)
T – Talbot Minibus (from 1989)
V – Volvo Single / Double deck
Y – Guy Double Deck
Z – Mercedes-Benz Minibus

Have a look at our Chassis & Bodywork Type Classifications feature for more information about how chassis and bodywork numbers were created.

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