This page created 10th January 2001, using Notepad, by Ian Smith.

The 3Q3s: Country Area double-deckers, Q4-Q5

In 1934 the Country Area of London Transport was still doing much its own thing, such as pursuing its own variations in vehicle policy somewhat independent of Chiswick. That year they ordered lowbridge STLs - with forward entrances and doors - with bodies by Weymann, and also two double-decker Qs - also with centre entrances and doors. They were intended for Green Line use, and were delivered in green livery with black bands with Green Line as well as London Transport fleetnames.


Chassis: AEC Q, 15ft 10in wheelbase, AEC A167 petrol engine, D129 gearbox
Body: Weymann, 26ft 0in, H28/28C.

3Q3, Country Area Apart from the obviously different siting of the doorway, there were plenty of small differences between these and the front-entrance Central buses. The lower saloon windows were mounted much lower, and the middle of the three mouldings was gone. A line of ventilation louvres appeared above the lower deck windows. The front windows were correspondingly deeper, and the AEC triangle badge was absent.
The window spacings were somewhat mixed, caused by the siting of the doorway and engine.
Seating was something of a dog's breakfast in the lowwer saloon. There were sideways-facing seats behind the nearside front wheels, and also in the rear corners, in addition to a long bench on the offside between the drivers cab and the stairway.
The power-operated sliding doors slid back into glazed recesses, forcing the adjacent seats sideways into the gangways. The forwards-facing seats over the wheel arches were raised much higher than the rest. Upstairs was much better, with ample space for the 28 seats. There was a single seat opposite the top of the stairs, and a five-seater across the back, plus eleven pairs. All the seats were well-trimmed with possible Green Line use in mind.

Into service

However, the powers-that-be decided that the two buses (BPG 507 and BPJ224) were unsuitable for Green Line use, and after the removal of the Green Line lettering they went to work at Leatherhead on the 406, between Redhill and Kingston, where they were joined by forward-entrance Country STLS.

Country Area records were taken over by Chiswick in 1935, and the two buses acquired their fleetnumbers: Q4 and Q5.

In May 1937 they were joined by Q2 and Q3 from the Central Area.

In July 1938 all four moved to Hertford (HG) for use on the 310.

That lasted for a year, then all five Q double-deckers were moved to Grays (GY) for the 372.

Dates Route No Route Garage
August 1934406 Redhill - Reigate - Epsom - Tolworth - Kingston StnLH
July 1938 310 Enfield - Waltham Cross - Broxbourne - Ware - Hertford North StnHG
July 1939 372 Grays - PurfleetGY

The war saw the retirement of all five into store at various places.


The pair were sold in March 1946 to Lancashire Motor Traders in Salford, who found homes for both of them.

Q4 was bought by G.H.Ennifer of Doncaster for his Blue Ensign bus company, and was put into service on their route between Doncaster and Rossington in blue and cream livery with a false AEC radiator on the front. They later fitted it with a diesel engine. It appeared without the false radiator, but with horizontal aluminium mouldings forming a broad inverted vee on the front. It lasted in service until 1951.

Q5 went to Brown of Garelochhead, along with Q188. It too was fitted with a fake AEC grille. By 1950 it had been retired, and was in use as a caravan.

bus histories photographic references.

Bus Stop Q index. 2Q2 3Q3 4Q4