Coventry Corporation Transport Society

100 Years of Buses in Coventry

Planning the Event

The poster above advertised the event.  It was the result of a lot of discussions, thoughts and hard work by those involved in organising 100 Years On the Buses.  The first suggestion was made by Chris Williamson on November 12 2013, so the whole thing came together in a very short space of time, thanks mainly to the hard work and perseverance of Clint Hancox.  On 21 November, Roger Burdett announced that he would be running an original route re-creation on the anniversary of the original start date, if possible.  Two days later, John McSparron indicated that the anniversary would be on March 30, 2014.  On November 26, Roger declared that he would organise a running day on March 30th, trying to recreate the original route.  The following day, Steve Knight offered to assist with PR.

By December 12, Clint Hancox was in discussions with the Coventry City Council about an event on March 30 based on White Street Car Park.  As well as stalls, it was envisaged that buses would be run out from the event on four routes, probably Jubilee Crescent, Jardine Crescent, Ball Hill/ Wyken and Cheylesmore.  Roger Burdette would be organising buses and routes with Clint doing the rest.  He very much hoped to have support from CWK205 Forum and CCT Society members with marshalling, etc.  Roger envisaged all buses originating with Coventry, Midland Red, WMPTE or other Midlands Municipal authorities.  He already had avaiable CCT 244, 333 and 334; EX Nuneaton Midland Red 5905, and 2 Fleetlines already promised.  The event would be different to the 2012 event with more concentration on route recreation.

Later the same evening, Clint Hancox announced that the hundred year Coventry Transport Motor Bus would take place on March 30 2014.  He promised a great family day out.  Apart from the brilliant bus runs, the stalls would include photographs, books, models, and memorabilia.  Also there would be things for sale on the day for this event which would be a limited addition.  A kids tent was planned plus awards and certificates in addition to a CWK205 table, run as a swap shop table, free to anyone who would like to swap.  Clint was asking for Marshals and volunteers to help out.

On December 29 Clint announced that beautiful certificates would be presented at the event to comemmerate Coventry Transport by honouring people in the Coventry bus world.  The certificates would be a limited addition handed out by a special guest.

On December 30 Clint Hancox listed several stalls that had already been booked, including model bus and bus book stalls.  He also pointed out that the event would be free to the public.  Some of the proceeds would be used to raise money for air ambulance to help keep the service running.  He had arranged a meeting with Coventry City Council on the January 13 2014 at and invted people to get in touch with him if they would like to attend.

On January 4 2014 Clint Hancox announced that he was waiting for permission of the Lord mMayor of Coventry to use the Coventry crest and his signature on the five classes of certificates.  The certificates will be presented between 13:00 and 14:00 at the event.  He also announced that bus drivers uniforms would be displayed on mannequins and anyone would be able to borrow them and pose in front of a bus.  He also suggested that the title for the event shoud be 100 Years On the Buses to appeal to the wider general public and a new generation of people.

On January 8 2014, Clint Hancox had a meeting with Centro and they very kindly gave permission to drive the event buses through Pool Meadow bus station from the newly created entry by the fire station, thus recreating the Pool Meadow of the post-war era.

On January 13 2014 Clint Hancox had a meeting with the Coventry City Council safety team at the Council House.  There were concerns about White Street Coach Park relating to the ring road (which the team were already aware of) but two application forms had been submitted, one for White Street Coach Park and the other for Millennium Place.  For White Street Coach Park, the whole event would be similar to most bus events, but the second option, Millennium Place, is open space and there could be buses on display plus stalls.  The buses going out on the tours around coventry would be parked in the coach bays opposite the fire station, on the same side as Millennium Place.  It was planned that the buses would leave the coach bays through Pool Meadow's new exit.  Buses returning into town would park up beside the museum.  The meeting went really well and was thought to be a big plus for the event. Clint had also arranged a meeting with National Express on Thursday of that week.

On January 16 2014 Clint Hancox's meeting with National Express went very well and he had a very positive response form Sharon Challis-Brown.

On January 22 2014 Clint Hancox announced that Coventry City Council had granted permission for the event to take place in Millennium Place.  The stands that had been booked to date were the Air Ambulance stall, a Bus and Train book stall, a model bus sale stall, a photograph stall, the CWK 205 stall, a CCT Society stall, a swap shop stall, a 124-scale bus display stall, a Coventry Transport stall, a Midland Red stall, an MBF stall and a Kiddies Corner staffed by professionals such as school teachers.  He called for volunteer marshals and volunteers to help out with everything else.  He also announced that there would be posters available on the CWK 205 website and asked for people to copy them and put them in local shops.

By the following day, the Lord Mayor of Coventry confirmed he would attend and make a speech.  He would also be signing award certificates and presenting them.  Other special guests would also be attending and a bus would be taking tours around the city centre.  At about 2pm there would be a special trip taking the Lord Mayor and VIPs plus members of the media.  The bus would be a Coventry Transport Daimler CVG6 with both driver and conductor.  Anyone interested in taking that trip was urged to pre-book because the number of seats would be limited.

On January 24 it was announced that the certificates would be presented on behalf of the CCT Society and the following day Clint made it known that he was negotiating to use the big screen TV in Millennium Place for the event.  He also floated the possibility of a bus tug-o-war in the coach park.

On January 26 Clint announced the Memory Board, which would be very important for the event.  This would be a set of display boards and everyone was urged to write stories about Coventry Transport.  A lot of people that have been employed by Coventry Transport have amazing stories.  Indeed, people have met, married and worked together and have some womderful experiences of working on the buses.  The Memory Board will be on display at the event and will be presented to the City Archives plus the rest of the event day.  He also announced the idea of "Where do we go from here?", the idea being to let people know about the various bus museums and websites.

On January 29 Clint announced that the "On the Buses" fan club had added the event poster to their website.  He also reminded everyone that it was the twentieth anniversary of the new Pool Meadow and the fortieth Anniversary of the transfer of Coventry Corporation Transport to WMPTE.

The above extracts from the CWK205 forum show the amount of work, inspiration and organisation that went into making the event a success.  A big Thank You and Well Done to all concerned.