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Bedford OB History
By 1951 when production of the famous Bedford OB ended, over 16,000 had been built, just over half being exported. Many UK chassis were fitted with 25 to 29 seat coach bodies by Duple of Hendon and were a common site all over the country. Their reliability and ease of maintenance ensured long life and many examples survived into preservation, some still today earning their keep as PSVs.
History of this vehicle :
SJ 1340 was one of the last OB’s to be built. It was new to Gordon Brothers, Lamlash, Isle of Arran, with 29 seat Duple ‘vista’ coach body. In 1961, Gordon Brothers was taken over by A C Lennox & Sons, Whiting Bay, Arran and the bus continued to be used on a daily basis, along with another Lennox OB. In 1981, Lennox was taken over by Arran Transport and Trading Co. ltd of Brodick, Arran. The bus was used for a short period on local services but, in 1983 it was transported to Birmingham, in the care of Bill Stainforth, to have some restoration work undertaken. However that arrangement fell out of favour and in 1991 the bus was transported back to sit in a shed in Brodrick. In 1994 the bus was transferred to the ownership of Arran Transport Ltd, on the acquisition of Arran Transport and Trading Co. Ltd. By Stagecoach. By 1999, it had been sitting for several years in a storage yard just off the pier head in Brodrick, unprotected from the elements and subjected to a significant amount of vandalism. In April 2000, following the welcome support of local author and transport enthusiast, Berni Mitchell – Luker and with the generous agreement of Bob Haddow of Arran Transport, the bus was acquired for preservation. In May 2000 it was extricated, with some considerable difficulty, from the back of the yard in Brodrick and placed on a caravan transporter for the journey to The Scottish Vintage Bus Museum. The bus had been acquired primarily to prevent it from suffering further weather and vandalism deterioration. It spent many years moving between workshops and storage sheds, with remedial work being undertaken in between other restoration projects. In 2016, the bus was moved into the main museum workshop where timber framing and other bodywork repairs were completed.