Express & Star

Man reunited with beautiful retro Wolverhampton bus he helped save 50 years ago

It was a memorable day for all involved as a man celebrated his birthday by seeing the bus he helped to save.

John Platt gets ready to ride the bus with Martin Fisher

The Aldridge Transport Museum was the setting for a reunion between John Platt from Doncaster and a 1954 Blue Guy bus, originally built in Wolverhampton, and run in Armthorpe in South Yorkshire when Mr Platt was younger.

Museum trustees chairman Martin Fisher met Mr Platt, who was celebrating his 80th birthday, at the museum on Thursday to reunite him with the bus that Mr Platt had saved in the 1970s when it had been taken out of service.

Mr Fisher said: "I was contacted by Keith Platt, who told me about his brother John, who had worked for a company in Armthorpe, near Doncaster where the bus, which was built in Wolverhampton, had been running for a few years.

The visit to Aldridge Transport Museum was an 80th birthday treat for John Platt

"It had started out as a Guy demonstrator, running in the factory, then Blue Line had bought it and run it for a few years, then after it was taken out of service, they took all the seats out and were using it as a shed when they were finished with it.

"John Platt said he bought it because it was an unusual-looking vehicle and he liked it very much, but had sold it on some years later and hadn't seen it for many years, but kept talking about it, so they asked if he could come and see it as we had it and we said yes and invited him down to see it."

Mr Fisher said he and other members of the museum had taken Mr Platt out for a ride in the bus, which had been a lovely experience as he had told them a lot about the history of the bus and the state it had been in when he first bought it.

He said: "We learned quite a bit about the state it was in, with none of the seats inside, and how, when it was in service, it ran from Doncaster to Armthorpe every Saturday night, so if you were cleaning it, it could be profitable as people at that time of night were dropping money.

Martin Fisher said he and the other trustees learned a lot from John Platt about the history of the bus

"The real connection for us was that it was built in Wolverhampton by Guy and it ran in various parts of the country, so it was great to be able to link to the past, plus he complimented us on the shade of blue we used to repaint the bus, which was great for us.

"It gives us a lot of pride in a way as we can show people the work we do to keep these buses alive and it helps us through extra publicity, meaning we can bring more people into the museum.

"We also got a lovely email from Keith which said how much his brother enjoyed his visit and how he talked about nothing else on the way home, so it was nice to do that for him."