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Hong Kong Bus Files
Daimler/Leyland Fleetline
 
 
Hong Kong was the biggest export market for Fleetlines. Two major operators, KMB and CMB started buying Fleetlines in the mid-1970's. All of the Hong Kong chassis were supplied as complete built-up units while the bodies were shipped out as ckd kits for local assembly.

The book is predominantly written in Chinese, however, many of the photographs have both Chinese and English captions.

I detail below the chapters, whose titles are indicated in red, in the order they appear:-

Standardisation of the Daimler Fleetline includes photos of XF1, the first vehicle ordered by London Transport, a West Midlands PMT single decker delivered in 1978, and several Scottish examples.

The Daimler Fleetline in Scotland is the only chapter written in English, by Campbell H Morrison, and details the Fleetlines of the Scottish Bus Group and both Municipal and Independent Operators in Scotland. Details of non-PSV's and Sales & Transfers form the remainder of this chapter, with the final few paragraphs mentioning the Scottish Vintage Bus Museum.

The CMB RLX1/SF1 Success Story six pages devoted to RLX1, the first Fleetline delivered to CMB in 1972, later renumbered SF1.

Jump on a Jumbo was the slogan used by CMB between decks on some of it's Long Fleetlines, the LF Class, and this chapter starts with several colour and black and white photographs of the first LFs in their red and cream livery. The latter part consists mainly of colour photographs of various LFs with differing types of bodywork and liveries.

The KMB Fleetline is covered by eight pages of text and photos, showing the BACo and Duple Metsec bodied examples delivered to KMB, and, of course, displaying the various liveries applied during their lifetime.

Hong Kong Experience features photographs of the Fleetline chassis, driving position, including instrumentation, engine etc.

DMS - From London to Hong Kong is devoted, of course, to the DMS, and covers thirteen pages, including photographs of CMB, KMB, Citybus and Argos examples.

The Second-Hand Fleetlines  starts with the early ex-Bournemouth Corporation Transport MCW bodied examples, acquired by Citybus, and in various liveries, to the ex-Tayside, West Midlands, South Yorkshire and Greater Manchester acquisitions, amongst others, by the various Hong Kong bus companies.

A KMB Fleetline Borrowed to Citybus or should it be loaned! The story, in Chinese, of the loan, in November 1992, of KMB Fleetline D1029 to Citybus, which I believe was to trial the long Fleetline on a Citybus route on Hong Kong Island.

Farewell to the Fleetlines brings us up-to-date, with photographs taken during 1999, of the Fleetlines acquired by New World First Bus. SF31 in it's purple Peak livery is among them as is SF 15, painted in full NWFB livery and carrying extra decals for it's use as a Staff Communication Bus.

A Selection of Advertising Buses is really a self-explanatory chapter, which includes twenty-five colour photos of various all-over liveries, including Marlboro, Canon, Caltex and Toshiba.

The Second Generation China Double Deck Bus I can only assume relates to buses subsequently sold on to China, as in this particular chapter, the photographs only have Chinese captions!

Appendix 1 - Advertisements contains photos of the various Daimler Fleetline adverts, all of which, as you would expect, written in English.

Appendix 2 - The Daimler Catalogue contains photographs of Daimler Fleetline literature, again in English.

Appendix 3 - China Motor Bus Annual Report covering 1975/76, the front of which is taken up by a photograph of the front of LF107, in it's red and cream livery.

 
COMMENTS

Whilst it is a shame that most of the text is in Chinese, the large number of quality colour photographs enable the likes of me, who cannot read Chinese, to follow most of the stories. 

A very useful addition to the bookcase of any Hong Kong bus or Fleetline enthusiast, and I would like to personally thank Mr. Danny Chan for providing me with this sample for review.

 
Back cover of book
 Title :  Hong Kong Bus Files - Daimler/Leyland Fleetline
 Author :  Danny C Y Chan
 Published by :  Northcord International Limited
 Year of publication :  18th April 2001
 ISBN :  962-920-033-3
 Size :   240mm x 175mm
 Pages :   130
 Price :  HK$ 160
 UK£ ?
 

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This page last updated Sunday, 6th May 2001
 
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