We welcome you to this
unusual video presentation featuring buses operating onto the Isle of Portland
in the county of Dorset in southern England.
Portland is connected to the mainland by Chesil Beach, a major shingle
beach that stretches some 18 miles from West Bay to the Isle of Portland. It is home to the famous Portland Bill
lighthouse, a destination for the many who enjoy spectacular views of the
sea. The independent transport
videos cameras have been out and about filming two very interesting
events for your enjoyment. The ‘Port Shuttles’
– as the name suggests is a shuttle service operated by Go South Coast’s Damory
subsidiary linking the cruise ship dock at Portland Port with Weymouth’s
attractive harbour area and the ‘Buses to The Bill’ event which features a
running day of mostly preserved and some contemporary buses from local
operators running along the Dorset coast via Weymouth to Portland Bill
We begin our programme with
the ‘Port Shuttles’ featuring just two days, one in 2022, the other in 2023.
(We should point out that this service runs most days during the summer months
when the cruise ships call into Portland).
Filming takes place along Lerret Road and Portland Beach Road on
Portland and at Spring Road in Weymouth where the buses terminate.
During our 2022 filming Damory operated an
interesting fleet of buses. A fleet of
former London buses in the shape of Enviro400 double-deckers and Wright-bodied
Volvo B7TL and B9TL double-deckers smartly turned out in either Damory all over
blue or ‘morebus’ red and blue liveries but with Damory fleetnames. Added to the mix was a former ‘Vectis Blue’
Envio400 1507, now in the Damory fleet.
We also see the operations of First Hampshire, Dorset & Berkshire
with their Wessex brand in a smart two-tone green and yellow livery as well as
‘Coaster’ branded open-toppers. Moving
to our 2023 visit we see similar Damory buses augmented with the huge 8101
(HF08 TKX), a Scania N230 UD with East Lancs Olympus 86 coach-seat bodywork and
a number of Excelsior coaches.
second part of our video programme features some of the highlights from the
2022 and 2023 ‘Buses to The Bill’ event.
A most popular event in the preserved buses calendar, we start at the
Weymouth Coach Park for the 2022 event with a superb line up of Bristol
REs. With bus, dual-purpose and coach
examples in the line-up in the liveries of Bristol Omnibus, Hants & Dorset,
Eastern Counties, Royal Blue and Crosville.
Other fleets represented are London Transport, Bournemouth Corporation,
Wilts & Dorset and preserved coaches from various independents. Go South Coast also sent a representation
from their current ‘morebus’ and ‘Salisbury Reds’ fleets, the latter including
8102 (HF08 TKY), sister to 8101. Our 2023
visit to the event begins at Seldown Coach Park in Poole with a great variety
of buses including an RF, RT and RM from London Transport plus many more. At Weymouth Coach Park we join former
Bournemouth Transport (Yellow Buses) 208 (E208 GCG), a 1988 Volvo Citybus with
an Alexander H74F body for a ride to Portland Bill. We see the superb vista of Chesil Beach and
views of the sea as we make the journey to Portland Bill Lighthouse and see
some of the buses assembled at the small coach park. We return to Weymouth on board 208 and see
the final departures after a most enjoyable day. Our final location on this programme is just
a few miles to the west of Portland. At
West Bay near Bridport we see First Wessex Volvo B7TL and B9TL Wright-bodied
buses in service in their smart green and yellow livery and in Jurassic Coaster
livery in both open and closed-top form.