We're very proud of 399ETB, our 'new' 1958 Duple Vega bodied Bedford SB3. Now its home and settled, we've sent in the cameras and can bring you a 'virtual tour' of this stunning coach.
Delivered yesterday to Eastons Vintage Coach Hire was 399ETB, an immaculate 1958 Duple Vega bodied Bedford SB3.
This stunning motor coach was delivered to our Stratton Strawless depot yesterday morning by Norfolk Recovery, who delicately transported 399ETB all the way from the beautiful North Yorkshire Moors.
New in 1958, 399ETB spent much of its life on the Shetland Isles with various operators. It was not until 1989 that it left the Shetland Isles, moving to Beestlye of Manchester until 1992 and Hurst Coaches of Wigan until 2002.
It then passed to the careful care of Coastal and Country Coaches in Whitby, North Yorkshire, where for fourteen years it was common-sight in the peaceful fisherman's town operating scenic vintage coach tours to film set locations from the popular TV series 'Heartbeat'.
Shortly after announcing the news on our Facebook Page yesterday evening, Reg Vardy got in touch to show us his photograph of the coach seen in what was known as the village of Aidensfield on television.
399ETB is planned to be available almost imminently for vintage coach hire for proms, weddings, days out and special events soon.
Last week was a busy one for Bessie, our 1951 Albion Victor vintage coach, with three days out exploring Norfolk.
On Wednesday, Bessie was in the City Centre for a wedding at Norwich Castle.
On Friday Bessie explored the Eastern side of our region on our Fairhaven and East Ruston vintage day excursion, which was almost a full coach.
After a scrub down and thorough clean, Bessie was sent out again on Saturday for another wedding ferrying passengers between Little Ellingham and Hingham.
Eastons Holidays tour and excursion driver Joe spent yesterday in the garage working his carpentry magic on our 1957 Duple Vega vintage coach RSJ422. Much of the wooden frame work underneath the bodywork panels were deteriorated so have been fully replaced and painted with preserving wood paint.
The exterior body panels will soon be put back in place, with some replacement parts being hand made by Derek.
It's been a busy two days in the garage at Eastons, with work continuing on restoring 1957 Duple Vega bodied Bedford SBG RSJ422 ready for weddings and events coming soon.
Robert has been at work in the rear luggage boot to release parts of the structure which have caused one interior floor panel to rise up and crack. Once this is done the floor will be reconstructed over this panel.
Kieran spent the afternoon revitalising the floors, and what a result we have. The panels are in an excellent condition and require very little further work after cleaning.
The first set of seats were delicately cleaned today and put back in place temporarily. We are currently looking into sending the vehicle away to be re-moquetted in a similar style to Bessie, our 1952 Albion Victor.
Work coming soon includes cleaning the heating system and relaying and polishing metal parts of the interior, plus completing the work at the rear of the coach and bringing RSJ422 mechanically up to scratch.
With the sun shining bright over Bessie, we had an excellent day at the Norfolk Brides Wensum Valley Wedding Show today.
Around forty exhibitors from every corner of the wedding industry you could imagine made an appearance, including some tasty Crepes from Christophe's Crepes! We spoke to so many lovely brides and grooms to be who took a real interesting into using Bessie at their wedding.
Keep an eye here on our website and on Facebook for updates of future shows we will be visiting!
A quick update today to share some of the latest news from the restoration of our 1957 Duple Vista bodied Bedford. We are working hard on bringing it 'up to scratch', Ben and Derek have completed mechanical work on brakes and gears and Corbett and Robert have been hard at work on the inside to get the window mechanisms working and renovate the interior panels. We will soon start work on the exterior and seating and hope to be sending it off for repaint into a darker shade of cream and a vibrant shade of red.
Following this, it will become a fully flourished member of the Eastons Vintage Coach Hire fleet and be available for wedding and events hire across Norfolk.
Eastons Vintage Coach Hire, Norfolk, will be making an appearance at the brand new Wensum Valley Wedding Fair, organised by Norfolk Brides on March 13th. We will be bringing along our 1952 Albion Victor on show outside for you to have a look around and have a "pop up shop" inside full of photographs and information which you may need. We look forward to seeing you there!
Norfolk Brides are a local wedding directory who successfully organise wedding fairs and events across the county for five years, and say to be "confident that we will put on a show to remember to our visitors".