Lincolnshire Road Car Company Limited, Lincoln

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History

The Company's roots lead back to the Clacton-based business of Mr. W P Allen, who, in 1922 opened an operation in Lincoln - after 1926, trading as 'Silver Queen.'   

The industry’s consolidation of the 1920s saw the business taken over by a new subsidiary of Thomas Tilling Ltd and the British Automobile Traction (B.A.T.) Group as the Lincolnshire Road Car Company in August 1928.  The south Lincolnshire operations of sister TBAT company United passed to Road Car in 1931, and the company started its habit of acquiring smaller companies – including Retford Motor Services (1928) and Skegness Motor Services (1934) – the latter bringing open sided Vulcan “toastrack” single deckers to the fleet.  The pre-war vehicle purchases represented the BAT / BET majority share, being mainly Leylands. 

In 1942, The Tillings / BAT partnership ended, and Road Car – or “Lincolnshire” as the buses were branded, became part of the Tillings Group, and was nationalised in 1948, the fleet becoming largely standardised on green Bristol / Eastern Coach Works buses and coaches – K and L types being followed by LD, FS and FLF ‘Lodekkas’, LS, MW and SC single deckers – most single deckers being purchased in coach form as well as buses – including a batch of rare SC coaches.  LH single deckers followed, and the Company was an early user of RE buses. 

A major expansion took place in 1950 when the Enterprise and Silver Dawn company, then the major operator in Scunthorpe and Gainsborough, was acquired.  

In common with much of the British bus industry, the early 1950s were the peak years for the Company and the seaside resorts it served.  At this time, the Company’s buses operated as far as Doncaster, Nottingham, Kings Lynn and Leicester.   Rural settlements – including Amber Hill, Bag Enderby, Drinsey Nook, Jerusalem, Maryland and New York - were served as well.  Express services connected the County with London, and Lincolnshire coaches played their part in the ‘Associated Motorways’ consortium, later to be a foundation of the National Express network. 

Tillings dark green gave way to National Bus Company leaf green in the early 1970s, and the standard new buses were Bristol VRs, Leyland Nationals, and quite a large fleet of Bristol LH single deckers, some of which lasted until the mid 1990s.  The Company’s last traditional ‘Lodekkas’ – and last conductors – operated in Scunthorpe in 1982. 

The Company’s Central Works at Bracebridge Heath was re-launched under the NBC as Associated Passenger Transport, who acted as breakers / dealers for a number of NBC fleets, as well as carrying out conversions and work for outside bodies (e.g. British Rail – for whom a number of buses were converted as mobile workshops) – the venture proved not to be sustainable. 

Deregulation saw competition – particularly in the South of the County, where the Holbeach and Boston operations were closed and the routes abandoned to independents.  The Company – now owned by the Stagecoach Group.

The NBC inheritance has gradually faded away, the Company’s last Bristol, VR No. 1958 (PFE 542V) being withdrawn and donated to the Lincolnshire Vintage Vehicle Society in 2001, where it joined a number of former Road Car and other buses, and has since returned to NBC green livery.   

The new Century has seen some high points, including the wider introduction of new, low floor buses, under the ‘Super Buzz’ and ‘Inter Connect’ names, and the acquisition of the bus operations of Eagre, Gainsborough in December 2001.  Many of the historic depots and bus stations have sadly been redeveloped, and the retreat from the south of the county has continued, Grantham depot closing in 2004.

New L's Operated 

bullet 20 Coaches
bullet 40 Buses
For full details click here.

Secondhand L's Operated

Fleet No Reg No In service Out Service Original Op Remarks
  BOW 163 NA NA H&D TS664 Not operated
  CVF 842 NA NA EC LL42 Not operated
  CVF 852 NA NA EC LL52 Not operated
  CVF 854 NA NA EC LL54 Not operated
2061 CVF 840 Jun 54 1956 EC LL40  
2062 CVF 845 Jun 54 1957 EC LL45  
2063 CVF 847 Jun 54 1957 EC LL47  
2064 CVF 853 Jun 54 1956 EC LL53  
2065 CVF 855 Jun 54 1956 EC LL55  
2066 CVF 856 Jun 54 1957 EC LL56  
2067 CVF 857 Jun 54 1956 EC LL57  
2068 BOW 165 Jul 54 Jan 62 H&D TS668  
2069 CVF 846 Nov 54 1957 EC LL46  
2070 CVF 850 Nov 54 1957 EC LL50  
2071 CVF 875 Nov 54 1956 EC LL75  
2072 CVF 876 Nov 54 1957 EC LL76  
2073 CVF 877 Nov 54 1956 EC LL77  
2074 CVF 880 Nov 54 1956 EC LL80  
2075 CVF 881 Nov 54 1957 EC LL81  
2076 CVF 882 Nov 54 1957 EC LL82  
2077 CVF 883 Nov 54 1957 EC LL83  
2078 CVF 884 Nov 54 1957 EC LL84  
2079 CWT 853 Jun 55 <Jun 56 WY 112  
2080 CWT 855 Jun 55 <Jun 56 WY 114  
2081 CWY 961 Jun 55 <Jul 56 WY 131  
2082 CWY 965 Jun 55 <Jul 56 WY 135  
2083 CWY 967 Jun 56 Jul 56 WY 137  
2084 CWY 969 Jun 55 <Jul 56 WY 139  
2085 CVF 860 1956 1956 EC LL60  
2086 CVF 872 1956 1956 EC LL72  

Fleetnames Used

bullet Lincolnshire

Operating Depots

bullet Boston (Closed 1980)
bullet Cleethorpes (Closed)
bullet Gainborough
bullet Goole (Closed)
bullet Grantham (Closed 2004)
bullet Grimsby
bullet Holbeach (Closed 1980s)
bullet Horncastle (Closed 1970s)
bullet Lincoln
bullet Louth
bullet Mablethorpe (Closed)
bullet Newark
bullet Retford (Closed)
bullet Scunthorpe
bullet Skegness
bullet Sleaford (Closed)

Outstations

bullet Alkborough (Closed)
bullet Brigg (Closed)
bullet Colsterworth (Closed)
bullet Messingham (Closed)
bullet Market Rasen (Opened 2004)
bullet Oakham (Closed)
bullet Walcot (Closed)