The National Bus Company - The Middle Years

The National Bus Company - The Middle Years

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The National Bus Company - The Middle Years
by Stephen Dowle

The National Bus Company was the creation of the 1968 Transport Act, which merged the bus operations of the Tilling Group and the British Electric Traction Company. In 1970 it was enlarged to include the former country area of London Transport, and the new state-owned company thus provided most of the bus services in England and Wales outside major cities and large towns. Deregulation and privatisation in 1986 led to its dissolution.

The National Bus Company: The Middle Years gives a portrait of the company in its mature years and covers an interesting period when the industry was in steep decline. It was a time of virtually full employment and driver-only operation was rapidly being introduced to alleviate a shortage of staff and to reduce costs. A corporate identity had been established and, although measures had been put in place to standardise the fleet, the company’s subsidiaries still operated an interesting variety of older vehicles serving out their final years. The author, who worked for an NBC subsidiary from shortly after the company’s inception until after its demise, presents here a selection from his personal collection of photographs.