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Ivor Norman
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Details: Very few bus company service vehicles with B-prefix registrations are known of. It is likely that some of the companies involved in the early years of bus tendering did operate such vehicles, but details were rarely published. The photo shown here was taken at Chingford Mount on 1st October 1991 and shows Ford Escort van B45MLP lettered for LeaValley. Things always get complicated when talking about the former London Country operations but here is a quick summary. London Country Bus Services (LCBS) was split into four separate companies in 1986. One was London Country North East, and this was further divided in 1989 into 'County Bus and Coach' and 'Sovereign Bus and Coach'. Vehicles with County did not carry that fleetname, being branded either as LeaValley (Hertford and Edmonton), TownLink (Harlow and Debden) or Thameside (Grays). There was a common livery of cream with green stripes. The company gained several LT bus routes, leading to the opening of a base in Edmonton, while it was eventually to become part of the Arriva empire (along with most of the other former LCBS operators). The bus behind the van is an Alexander-bodied Leyland Olympian of Capital Citybus, an operator that originated as Ensignbus with blue buses, and was sold in 1990 to Hong Kong Citybus with a new yellow livery. These operations later passed to First London and are now mainly in the hands of Go-Ahead London. Note the coloured patch on the side of the van bodywork, perhaps indicating repairs or graffiti removal.

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