Leyland Leopard PSU3/3R
Arrived at THV
New to bus operator and bus builder Alexander's Midland unit who underwent conversion work into recovery vehicle.
Alexander Y-type bodied Leyland Leopard PSU3/3R AMS295B was new as a service bus to W. Alexander & Sons Ltd in 1964.
It was purchased for the company's Midland operations based in Falkirk where it was numbered MPE29. Like many operators around during the 1960s, Alexander invested heavily into the Leyland Leopards, especially on the Y-type bodywork given the fact that they built them themselves from the bus and coach build side of the business. Alexander also carried out the work to convert it into a recovery vehicle in 1981, which has aided to its long survival due to its uniqueness.
Midland was one of three operating units of the W. Alexander & Sons company, with the other two being Fife (Kirkcaldy) and Northern (Aberdeen). As part of a rebranding exercise within the Scottish Transport Group in 1978, fleet names Fife Scottish, Midland Scottish and Northern Scottish were adopted, the names anticipating the 1985 group reorganisation, in which boundaries were realigned and the three companies became four: Fife Scottish Omnibuses Ltd, Midland Scottish Omnibuses Ltd, Northern Scottish Omnibuses Ltd and Strathtay Scottish Omnibuses Ltd. MPE29 passed into the Kelvin Scottish Omnibus Ltd division, which was formed from parts of the original Midland unit and Central SMT (later the short-lived Central Scottish Omnibuses Ltd). On transfer to the newly-named company, it adopted the fleet number S970.
After being withdrawn from Kelvin Scottish, it was sold to a Fife-based preservation group, before passing to its previous private owner who housed it at Stagecoach East Scotland's Aberhill depot. It has now been purchased by one of our THV members with it being anticipated to be restored into a special THV ancillary livery, which will be based on the former local Tyne & Wear PTE identity. This will also involve carrying out interior restoration into a PTE style.