Prepared on Notepad by Ian Smith,

This page created 11th April 2012.

Optare Excels: Tillingbourne, Safeguard


Tillingbourne

Tillingbourne liked Optare buses. In July 2000 the company borrowed the well-travelled Optare demonstrator R98HUA, which it used for a month or two. Then in September they bought another of the Optare demonstrators, P446SWX, which had spent some time with Harris Bus. This one they reregistered with a TIL mark.

Two new Excel2s arrived before the end of 2000, in October and December. They were dressed in Tillingbourne's dark blue and yellow.

But they were not to work for Tillingbourne for long. In March 2001 the company went into administration. The ex-demonstrator was sold via a dealer to Andybus of Malmesbury. The two new buses, after a period in store for the administrators, were bought by Safeguard of Guildford.

Safeguard 11.0m XL sketch

Safeguard

Safeguard repainted the two ex-Tillingbourne buses in its traditional style maroon and red livery - and kept them. They seem to have been well regarded, as they - plus another - were regular rally and Showbus attendees for the company for the next few years.

Safeguard even bought another in 2003, which seems to have been as well-liked as the other two.


Bus Histories

These histories are incomplete. They are being assembled as I garner information from a variety of sources. Particularly useful have been:
  • LOTS for accurate data: TLB, LBM, Annual Reviews
  • "London Bus Handbook", Capital Transport
  • buslistsontheweb.co.uk for VIN data


      R98 HUA   1/98    Optare Excel2 L1150, Optare 9212
                1/98    new to Optare, Crossgates: demonstrator   
                1/98    on loan to East Yorkshire Motor Services: blue/silver
                */98    on loan to MK Metro: blue/silver
                */98    on loan to Eastbourne
                7/98    on loan to Blackpool Transport 
               12/98    on loan to Warrington: blue/silver
                1/99    hired by Choice Travel, Walsall: blue/silver
                5/99    on loan to Ipswich: blue/silver 
                7/00    hired by Tillingbourne: white
                9/00    still on hire 
                7/01    delicensed

      P446 SWX  3/97    Optare Excel L1000, Optare 9072, B32F 
                3/97    new to Optare, Crossgates: demonstrator 
                2/98    loaned by Blackpool Transport
                3/98    returned to Optare 
                        loaned to Harris Bus: red, grey, white (like London United)
               12/98    used on 384
                2/99    used on 383 
               12/99    returned off-hire 
                9/00    acquired by Tillingbourne, Cranleigh
      TIL 6877 12/00    reregistered
                3/01    Tillingbourne into administration 
                4/01    sold to Bob Vale 
             by 7/01    bought by Andybus, Yate: orange/white
      P429 AHR 10/05    reregistered
               12/05    bought by Classic Buses, Annfield Plain #7803
                4/07    Classic Buses, Annfield Plain #7803
                1/08    Classic Buses, Annfield Plain
                8/08    acquired by Burtons of Haverhill
                6/09    Network Colchester
               10/09    bought by A.Barham, Harlow
                3/10    acquired by Thompson's, Christchurch: white
                8/10    Thompson's
                6/11    Thompsons
                3/12    bought by Filer's, Ilfracombe
                7/12    in service, Filers: white $
      JFZ 8261  1/13    reregistered
                7/13    in service, Filers: white, blue skirt $ 
                        bought by EOS London
                1/15    in service on 66 to Waltham Cross: white, blue skirt $
 761            2/15    numbered, EOS
                2/15    in service on 66: white, blue skirt $
                3/15    in service on HC1 to Harlow College $
                6/15    in service on 66 $
 
307   X307 CBT 10/00    Optare Excel2 L1100, Optare 9509, B39F
               10/00    new to Tillingbourne, Cranleigh
                3/01    Tillingbourne into administration
                4/01    into store by Somerbus at Stanton Wick
               10/01    bought by Safeguard, Guildford: maroon/cream
                */02    at Southsea Rally
                9/02    at Showbus 2002
                4/03    at Cobham Museum Open Day
                8/06    in service, Safeguard
                9/06    in service, Safeguard
                1/09    in service, Safeguard
                2/09    in service, Safeguard
                3/09    in service, Safeguard
                6/09    in service, Safeguard
               11/09    in service, Safeguard
                4/10    in service, Safeguard
                1/15    at H&D Eastleigh for DDA mods
                4/15    at Cobham Bus Gathering, Brooklands

308   X308 CBT 12/00    Optare Excel2 L1100, Optare 9510, B39F
               12/00    new to Tillingbourne, Cranleigh
                3/01    Tillingbourne into administration
                4/01    into store by Somerbus at Stanton Wick
               10/01    bought by Safeguard, Guildford: maroon/cream
                9/05    at Showbus 2005
                9/06    in service, Safeguard
                7/08    in service, Safeguard
                9/08    at Showbus 2008
                1/09    in service, Safeguard
                6/09    in service, Safeguard
                7/10    in service, Safeguard
                */15    at H&D Eastleigh for DDA mods
 
      YJ03 UMM  4/03    Optare Excel L1150, Optare 180595, B41F   
                4/03    new to Safeguard, Guildford 
                */03    at Southsea Rally
                9/03    at Showbus 2003
                9/04    at Showbus 2004
                6/06    in service, Safeguard
                9/06    in service, Safeguard
                3/10    in service, Safeguard
 

Photographic references


A key to the references is in the bibliography.

Tillingbourne
308     X308 CBT  TLB437 p41 12/00    on 21 to Guildford, Dorking

Bus Stop XL Index. Tillingbourne. histories. photo refs.