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Forum: Vehicles
Topic: LT Owned 1000-1999

Differences between 1456MR and 1457MR
Wed 01/02/06, 11:47
12 Replies
As you may have seen from Neil Fraser's comments against the picture of ''1457MR'' on this site, there is some confusion over the later identities of the two Militant master breakdown tenders. I have looked at several pictures and, apart from the different offside mirrors, I noticed that at least one of the pair had its headboard lettering changed to 'LTB Urgent' at some point. Could anyone who has pictures of these vehicles please check which Militant carried this?

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Militants again - LTB URGENT headboard - updated
Sun 22/04/07, 19:06
I have recently come across a set of pictures of 1456MR doing a demonstration of the art of towing a Routemaster. Interestingly the bus is RML2691 which is the one sold to Gala Cosmetics in 1972. These appear to have been taken at Stonebridge Garage and I reckon it was when the RML was new in 1967. 1456MR would have been with LT around a year at that stage so I take it that it is in as converted condition which is thus of interest. To get to the point among other slight livery variations it carries a white headboard with the red LTB URGENT lettering that I thought it only carried in preservation. It also has a very shiny silver painted chassis, trade plate 493GF and no mention of a garage on the driver's door. So now we know, and I apologise for prattling on about Militants AGAIN! (Andy Lambert - get yer paintbrush out). NOTE: I've just noticed 1456MR has only ONE mirror on each side in this view.

Note: Reply edited by Damon Cross, 25/04/07, 21:14.

Millys again
Tue 27/03/07, 22:50
Cheers to Andy for posting the info about the Brooklands Milly. There are some interesting pics on his site. This may be wishful thinking but it would be really nice to get the two vehicles together one day.... Tom.

The Mirrors have it
Tue 27/03/07, 22:03
Hi all. I can confirm that since I have owned Milly (1984) she has only had the one mirror and unless anyone ‘Knows’ otherwise it is the method I have always used. I was also confused by the pictures of 57 wearing Millys number plates for awhile!

The main difference of course is that 1457RM is a 4x4 1456RM is a 6x6. You may also like to know that Milly now has her own website and you can see more pictures at

Regards Andy Lambert
Note: Reply edited by Tom Young, 27/03/07, 22:44. Made web addresses into links.

Mon 25/09/06, 14:46
I paid a visit to 1457MR on Saturday and can confirm it has the chassis number 0859078. I also stuck my head underneath to confirm it has a plain beam axle at the front and is thus a humble 6x4.

Thu 07/09/06, 21:37
I've just found two recent shots of my favourite Milly's on the excellent AEC fotopic site. Go to and enjoy.

Yet more Militant Mularky
Mon 28/08/06, 20:42
A trip to Brooklands today to find and photograph XGP389W which we think is 1456MR and the chassis has the number 0860039 stamped on it which most definitely makes this 1456MR as that is 1456's chassis number as stated in that fine old reference book SUP15 - the original version that old folk like me bought new. I would conclude that XGP389W was carried briefly by 1457MR before transfer to 1456MR for some unknown reason. With regard to LTB URGENT, I don't believe that the Millys ever carried this in LT service, only in preservation but I'm open to correction. As far as I can tell the Millys only ever carried the full LONDON TRANSPORT URGENT in black and white while in LT service.

More Militant Mularky
Thu 23/02/06, 23:58
I've just spent a few hours studying old copies of LOTS's ''The London Bus'' and tracked the demise of the Millys from LT. 1456 shows as de-licensed and sent to Stonebridge (SE) garage in September 1980 due to a ''cracked chassis''. By December the status became ''Withdrawn'' and in May 1981 it shows as ''sold for preservation''. 1457 is shown as de-licensed in November 1982 and sent to the closed Turnham Green garage. By March of 1983 the status became ''withdrawn''. In April of 1983 it reads ''now preserved and registered XGP389W''. YES, 1457MR registered as XGP389W which is now carried by 1456MR. One final detail difference to add is that ''TOWING'' signs are definitely different and 1457's is mounted noticeably lower down.
Note: Reply edited by Damon Cross, 23/02/06, 23:58.

Mon 20/02/06, 20:34
You could look at the chassis number. One was O859 and the other O860. Should be on the front chassis member to the n/s of the radiator. There could be a military number on a plate - but these could be changed! John Harrington

Militant Muddles - the clues
Sun 19/02/06, 11:09
Having studied many photos of 1456MR and 1457MR I have drawn the conclusion that the sure way to tell them apart is the mirrors. The photo that started the confusion has to be 1457MR with 1456's number plate. I just don't know why it has the wrong number plate. Both the vehicles carried the red on white LTB URGENT headboard in preservation but I haven't seen any evidence of this being carried in LT days! Both have been repainted in LT red in preservation. 1456 ran around for a time repainted but with most of the yellow and black bits in plain yellow (except the jib on the end of the crane). I think it went brown before this ever got finished. 1457 seems to have run around with its roof in primer for a while and several photos are in circulation in this condition, including the photo of it carrying XGP389W. 1457MR was finally fully repainted and had all the black and yellow bits done too. Close inspection of this vehicle at North Weald about 10 years ago showed all the LT lettering was still visible under the paintwork. Another clue is the mounting of the number plates. 1457 seems to have it firmly attached in the space where LT had the reversible ''TOWING'' sign. 1456 carries it mounted above this slot on a plate that seems to slot in. Thus the vehicle at Thamesmead is 1457MR. The vehicle illustrated in the book Wreck and Recovery is 1457MR also. The only one ever seen in the brown livery is 1456MR. And of course 1457MR has TWO mirrors on the drivers side, 1456MR has just the one. Next time I come across either vehicle I will photograph them both in detail. Anyone out there in position to get them both to Wisley in April??? that would be a treat!
Note: Reply edited by Damon Cross, 19/02/06, 12:12.

Note: Reply edited by Damon Cross, 19/02/06, 12:13.

Note: Reply edited by Damon Cross, 19/02/06, 12:18.

Sun 19/02/06, 08:23
There is another photo at although this does not clarify the position (or does it?)