Prepared on Notepad by Ian Smith,

This page created 23rd June 2015.

Volvo low-floor Pathfinder: VWL1

VWL 1 at Showbus VWL 1 was the Volvo low-floor offering, taken on by London Transport in August 1995 at London General. It was in London red with low-floor /accessibility logos in the form of people-sized silhouettes along the sides of the bus. I have found little written about its performance with London General. It was used on the 201, and later on the free Tesco supermarket service at Epsom. By the time I saw it at Showbus 1998 it was looking a little sad, with its offside silhouette population cut off at the knees.

VWL 1 at Showbus 98

VWL 1 at Showbus It was returned to Volvo, then was loaned out by Duffields of Cambridge to various operators for short periods. Metropolitan Omnibus, Sovereign (at Stevenage) and Surrey Buses were in this mix. Then it went to West Midlands Transport in Walsall, where it operated for a while in dark blue livery.

It found a home with Marchants in Cheltenham Spa, and has remained in service there.

Bus histories

This history is not complete. It is being gathered as I process information gleaned from a variety of sources. Particularly useful have been:
  • LOTS, in TLB, Annual Reviews, LBM, Fleetbooks...
  •, for VIN data

VWL 1  N101 HGO  8/95    Volvo B6LE YV3R36E19SC005851, Wright U30, B36F
                 8/95 A  new to London Transport (London General)(Sutton) 
                      A  used on 201
                10/97 A  on Tesco Free Service, Epsom 
                 9/98 A  at Showbus 1998
                         returned to Volvo
                 9/99    on loan to Metropolitan Omnibus: in service on 187
                         off loan to Duffield (Cambridge)
                 3/00    on loan to Sovereign (Stevenage)
                 2/01    loaned to Surrey Buses: in service on 481 to Staines
                 3/01    Surrey Buses ceased trading
                 3/03    in service, Walsall #1955: blue
                 4/03    in service, Walsall #1955
                         bought by Marchants, Cheltenham Spa
                12/04    in service, Marchants: red, gold trim
                 6/10    in service, Marchants
                 6/12    in service, Marchants
                 3/13    in service, Marchants
                 1/14    in service, Marchants
                 5/15    in service, Marchants

Photographic References

For a key to the references see the bibliography.

VWL 1  N101 HGO LBH98 p80   10/97 A  on Tesco Free Service, Epsom 

Ian's Bus Stop Volvo index. VWL text. VWL bus history. VWL photo refs.