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Until late 2001 we believed that we were looking after the only known example of a single deck Guy BTX 6 wheeled trolleybus, our Hastings No 45 of 1929. We had always listened to rumours with some scepticism, so when we were told of a definite sighting of another example we were sufficiently intrigued to go and have a look. We saw an almost complete Guy BTX six wheeler that had been converted to the front of a bungalow.
click picture for a better view
The back was almost perfect, the front had the raked windscreen removed and had been repanelled complete with leaded lights
inside, looking towards the drivers cab where the steering gear has been removed ( and laid below the vehicle).
The cab had a door cut through the centre section and had been made into a kitchen. The remains of the partition had been covered with fibre board
removal of the board showed, on the left the information
"DOGS 1D ANY DISTANCE, BUT ARE NOT ALLOWED UPON THE SEATS"
The right hand side says
"PLEASE TENDER EXACT FARE WHENEVER POSSIBLE"
And the proof - on the right hand side, painted over, was the fare chart, or rather layers of fare charts, which revealed
"Service No. 10
Hastings Station to Ore
Via Fishmarket and Old London Road."
detail of one of the roof ventilators
a shot from the back looking forward, the diffs, diff housings, halfshafts, link prop, prop shaft and of course the traction motor are of course missing.
the steering wheel, shaft and box are resting underneath the vehicle.
According to the M&D and East Kent's list of about 1980 a Guy BTX single decker was recorded, in 1969, in Essex. No fleet number or registration was given - is this the one?
Many thanks to John Bishop of the Eastbourne Historic Vehicles Club via Tim Young for starting me off on this trail
7th January 2002 - Brian Maguire of the National Trolleybus Museum at Sandtoft confirmed that after rubbing off some paint the fleet Number 57 was revealed. No 57, registration DY5584 was delivered new to Hastings in June 1929, sold to Derby in July 1942 and decommissioned by them in 1945, sold, with Derby's other ex-Hastings vehicles in June 1946 to J.B.Huxley of Wrexham as a caravan - no explanation about how it came to be in Essex!
8th March 2013 - Since its discovery in Essex in 2001, the identity of this trolleybus has always been something of an enigma. Initially it was thought to be No.57 (DY 5584), based on the partial outline of a fleet number found under several coats of paint on the rear panel. Positive identification has been impossible in the absence of any visible chassis number on the steel underframe. Recent research has concentrated on the ownership of the trolleybus at its two locations in Essex between 1949 and 2001, and archive sources indicate that its owner throughout that entire period was most probably the original purchaser of No. 46 (DY 5459) from Hastings Tramways in May 1949.
This trolleybus is now in the care of The Trolleybus Museum at Sandtoft (www.sandtoft.org) and although definitive proof is still elusive, our best conclusion is to identify it as ex-Hastings No.46.
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