EDitorial ± 22-Sep-2003

Get On The Bus

Ken Kesey, him what wrote One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest (now a Penguin Classic, kids), would have been proud of me & the boy on Saturday, for we were very much on the bus. Not any old bus, mind you, but ADX1, "the first motorbus purchased by Ipswich Corporation in 1950". I can tell you're impressed out there in web-land.

ADX1 from 1950, an AEC Regent III model, bus-fans: sponsored by local hardware merchants Martin and Newby

There should have been two dads and six kids on the top deck; shame that a coincidental party at Kidz Kingdom had taken out 75% of our own party. We'd somehow contrived to arrive two minutes late at the Suffolk Record Office the previous week, only to watch our intended means of transport rattle past, leaving us high & dry. This time we made sure we were on time.

How do I get off the bus?!
— Stump, Buffalo (on C86 and A Fierce Pancake)

Our marvellous freebie trip was courtesy of Archive Awareness Month, or so our equally free balloons said. On board, up top, at the front, we were issued with original 3d tickets from the friendly and talkative conductor as we sallied through the town, eventually ending up where the bus lives: the Ipswich Transport Museum.

For your own safety and security, of course

Hadn't made it to the ITM previously, but will most certainly be going back. It's crammed with bikes, cars and trams, all with some connection to the town. Highlights for me during our short visit were:

  • reading about Cocksedge, the engineering firm where my dad used to work
  • learning about the dock railway, of which very little is left
  • chatting to the guy in charge about the Freston Brothers; he was then able, at a moment's notice, to dig out a handful of photos of my distant relatives

Nerd-ish? Perhaps. But, as they say, if this is the sort of thing you like, then you'll like this sort of thing. And you can't fault the enthusiasm or knowledge of the people – volunteers! – who run the place. Coming up on Sunday 5th October 2003 is "Come And Ride On Our Buses" Day, so get yourself down there and get on the bus!

Be seeing you!