Last week saw the Merseyside Bus Club's annual holiday take place - this year in and around Essex, the holiday included numerous depot visits one of which was to the Ensignbus complex in Purfleet which is covered in this post by our regular correspondent David Bell who joined the group for that day of the tour, the clubs main vehicle for the holiday was Stagecoach's Eastern Counties liveried Bristol FLF JAH 553D which dates from 1966, various other vehicles were also used during the week including Ensign's ex-East Kent Royal Tiger FFN 451.
This post contains a small selection of what was seen at the Ensignbus depot, including vehicles from their own service fleet, extensive sales stock and heritage fleet - enjoy!
We'll start this post with a photo showing a couple of Ensigns service buses, pictured here is a pair of Dennis Tridents including ex Stagecoach London Alexander bodied LX04 FXS and East Lancs bodied PX55 AHG, the latter of the two is part of a batch of three new to Cumbria County Council and operated by Stagecoach in Cumbria, they were withdrawn and sold to Ensign in late 2012, two of course passed to our local operator Norfolk Green whilst Ensign retained this one (c) David Bell.
A vintage vehicle now, seen here undergoing preparations for a wedding hire is Leyland PD2 KTJ 204C, this smart vehicle was new to Lancaster City Transport in 1965 and features a front sliding door (c) David Bell.
The Ensign sales fleet is currently host to a large number of ex Western Greyhound vehicles following the Cornish independents sad demise earlier this year, seen here is one of the vehicle types most associated with the WG fleet, a Plaxton bodied Mercedes Benz Vario, this later example which carries registration WK56 SET is fitted with a wheel chair lift (c) David Bell.
Another Western Greyhound vehicle seen here is Alexander ALX400 bodied Dennis Trident Y522 NHK which was new to Stagecoach London and joined the WG fleet after their devastating depot fire in May 2013 (c) David Bell.
Back to the Ensign fleet now for this shot of three unrestored vehicles, from left to right are 'Breakdown Tender' ex London Transport Park Royal bodied AEC Regent dating from 1934, in the middle is one of the many MCW Metrobuses previously operated by Ensign - F292 NHJ was new to London Transport in 1989. On the right is Leyland Titan PD2 XMD 47A which was new to Trent in 1957 and latterly operated for The Big Bus Company on London Sightseeing tours (c) David Bell.
Seen here is ex Ensignbus and before that ADL demonstrator Alexander Dennis Enviro 400 SN56 AWW, this vehicle has recently reappeared at Ensign having spent a few years operating in the North with Helms/Aintree Coachlines (c) David Bell.
Back to a vintage bus for our last photo, used to carry the bus club members to their next port of call after the Ensign depot visit was this ex East Kent Leyland Royal Tiger FFN 451, this bus dates from 1951 and when new was used on regular trips across the English Channel to France, it has been part of heritage fleet for the last two years (c) David Bell.
Many thanks to David Bell for the photographs included in this post, to find out more about Ensignbus visit their website.