Wednesday, 2 November 2016

Impressive But Controversial (2)

How Dare You Mention Bus Spotters!
That dilemma rears its ugly head again in this booklet, the current guide to the Isle of Wight Bus and Coach Museum (on sale at £4.50). The firm that designed the brochure has managed to do so in a way with makes buses interesting even to the layman! (Shock horror - can that be possible?)

Here's half the eight-panel index:-
Even fbb admires the PR skill in describing a tired and tatty bus garage as a "brilliant building"! The Trustees have, however, donew a magnificent job in turning the tiredness ...
... into something much more acceptable.
But there it is ... the dreaded word!
Each bus is pictured with a chatty cheery heading, a full colour photograph and a brief history unencumbered with technobabble. 
Note that the header "blob" is in the style of a tax disc (remember when we had them?)

Here are a selection of headings with the bus attached.


DENNIS DART - 817 (G526 VYE)
And here is the same bus painted for the "Heathrow Direct" service running from hotels to the airport.
In 1995, a new route called Airbus Direct was launched. This linked Heathrow to nearby hotels, operating on request to a hotel on any reasonable route using 16 early Dennis Darts displaced from other routes. The "Airbus" services were sold en bloc to National Express in February 2000. Airbus Direct was rebranded Hotelink and later Dot2Dot, but was sold to Corot plc in early 2009 and finally withdrawn later in the year.

BRISTOL K5G – 908 (YWG 109)

BRISTOL K – 721 (EDL 657)

And we mustn't forget fbb's favourite! It's a favourite because he used to own it; and an additional delight because it might be the only VR still running that has a stair gate. This was a sliding frame which could be pulled across the stairs when in "one man" operation to shut off the top deck.

BRISTOL VRT – 628 (SDL 638J)
And Joseph? All fbb's buses and coaches had Biblical names. This one was Zaphenath Panea, the name given by the Pharoah to Joseph because the Egyptians could not pronounce his Hebrew name!

But you can see that some dyed-in-the-wool bus enthusiasts might consider such light hearted descriptions of their prides and joys might be deemed too trivial; but what a spiffing way to encourage youngsters of all ages to take an interest. Here's a page about "famous buses" in general ...
... and part of a double spread giving a history of the humble bus from stage coach to double articulated. Very neat and very informative.
The Guide Book is packed with other stuff and is, overall, a joyous production, 

But fbb did proffer a tiny criticism about inadequate labelling of exhibits, notably the Inspectors' and Enquiry Office displays.
Such is the power of the internet and of this blog that, according to Museum Treasurer and our Isle of Wight Correspondent, a small and dedicated team from the museum worked through the night on Saturday last to rectify the problem. As the fbb's sped happily back to East Deron the new sign was being unveiled in a short but poignant ceremony.
Here, museum and Southern Vectis grandees look on as the new sign is revealed.
Of course it was pure co-incidence! But fbb does wonder, as the office was for all inspectors not just one, whether the apostrophe is in the wrong place.

But, seriously folks! fbb must offer his grateful thanks to all the museum people who made his two visits so enjoyable; and to the countless unsung volunteers who have, indeed, done such a good job.

"You've all done very well!"

Talking of signs, it's back to the wonders of electronics tomorrow.

 Next technology blog : Thursday 3rd November 

1 comment:

  1. Museums and collections can't survive on enthusiasts alone so good to see an initiative to broaden the appeal to families and holiday makers.