On the Buses … 1951 (part 3)

On the Buses … 1951 (part 3)


The Festival of Britain was a national exhibition held throughout the United Kingdom in the summer of 1951. It was organised by the government to give the British people a feeling of recovery in the aftermath of war and to promote the British contribution to science, technology, industrial design, architecture and the arts.  

So what’s with the picture of a London bus hanging precariously in mid-air then ? Well … in 1950 four London double-decker buses went on a European tour to publicise the oncoming Festival Of Britain in 1951. All four buses went into normal public service on return to London and each carried a “GB” plate at the rear and special plaques on each deck commemorating the tour and with information of the tour. 


London transport RT 3070 being craned onboard a ship in 1950 along with sister vehicles RT 1692, RT 1702 and RT 3114 . 

 The following two items are short pathe news reels covering these four buses on their European tour.

And to wind this post up nicely, here is another short film called Britain Portrayed Abroad – Journey by a London Bus in 1950!  It is very British. Very 1950s. It was intended to be screened abroad. It is deadly serious. Listen and watch. I really think you should. Listen out for the ‘thoughtless man’. It is wonderful.


12 responses to “On the Buses … 1951 (part 3)

  1. We just love our buses!

  2. Fascinating. extraordinarily patronising by today’s standards, those old public service films.

  3. You always have such interesting hystorical stories for us. I always loved those London buses. I was so impressed when I sat in one for the first time in my life when I was 15.

  4. carefully prepared timetables – buses on time, cheerful conductors, kind passenger, children forming a queue, four miles for 5d. Brilliant!!!, – love e the busy busy music!

  5. Reblogged this on Barrow Blogs: and commented:
    You just have to watch the video – sit back and listen!! Brilliant

  6. As an American, it’s hard for me to get over those buses driving on the “wrong” side of the road.

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