London Trolleybus No.1 on its last day run in Kings Road, Kingston

From: "Alan Stokes" <alanst@redhotant.com>

Last day run in Kings Road, Kingston
Click on picture [350] for an enlarged version
 
King's Road, Kingston
Click on picture [300] for an enlarged version
 
King's Road, Kingston [May 2006]
Click on picture [P300] for an enlarged version

No.1 in Kings Road, Kingston, in fact a few hundred yards in the direction the trolleybus in picture 300 is travelling. The nearest landmark to Picture 350 is St Agatha's Roman Catholic Church. The trolleybus is heading down Kings Road, approaching the church, on the way back to Kingston on the Kingston 'Loop'.

Oh, the times I travelled that way, on the 602 home from School. I got on at The Dittons and travelled over half the route, getting off at the next stop, but one, from where Photo 350 is taken. If it wasn't for houses, now on the site of Kingston Barracks, I could virtually see the spot where the picture is taken, from my back window!

From: "Roger Loat" <roloat@talktalk.net>

Just come across your wonderful site with loads of pictures of the Diddler.

I have a question you may be able to answer. It would be of interest to know exactly what the phase out period of the Diddler was. I remember it took some weeks - maybe months to change over to Q1s.

I was at infant's school then and my dad, being a baker, closed the shop on Wednesday afternoons and always met me from school for a bus ride! We would catch a 601 from Third Cross Road [I went to Trafalgar Infants] and go to Tolworth [up top in the front of course]. We would visit the chickens by the station and return to Kingston on a 'GREEN' [excitement!] 406 RT then by 601 back to home near the Nelson.

When the change-over started I would keep my dad hanging around for hours waiting for a gleaming new Q1 but as the Diddlers got fewer I kept him waiting for one of them instead. Looking back I don't think he minded.

On the sad 8th May 62, I followed No1 round the whole circuit on my BSA Golden Flash - I may appear in some of your shots in my blue jumper - I notice a head and shoulders in one of the pictures on your site. Sadly, this was about 3 weeks before my 21st birthday when I got an 8mm cine camera. How I wish I had it for that day! I made do with a very cheap tin 2.25" square format tin box which I loaded with colour film and got a few reasonable shots.

One other question. The first load of Q1s were HYM xxx and the next batch LYH xxx if I recall correctly and my mates and I wanted some way to tell them apart. In the end the only difference we could find was on the rear platform of the HYMs the class was written Q1 and on the LYHs it was written Q.1 - So that is what we called them; Q1s and Q dot 1s - was there any difference between them?

Incidentally, when I saw the A1 at Covent Garden it was displayed with 667 blinds - a route that to my knowledge it never operated [That was C1 domain] unless for a one off emergency cover or something, the people at the museum were very off hand when I 'forcefully' pointed this out to them. I don't know if they ever changed it.

Thanks again for the site and the memories. If you can help with those dates I would be very grateful.
Best wishes, Roger.

From: "Tim Harrison" <timharrison444@hotmail.com>

I adore the pictures on the trolleybus website - especially the ones around Kings Road, Kingston, where I grew up. I was born in 1957, and my earliest memories include going into Kingston town centre from the Kings Road/Park Road crossroads on the trolleybus.

I always insisted we sit in the front seat at the top, so I could 'drive'. As it was just my mother, my sister and I, it was - my mother insisted - the man's responsibility to pay the conductor. So I'd wait for his arrival on the top deck and would politely request 'A four and two twos please'... handing over the eight pence in my grubby hand, and being given the tickets to look after.

I'm currently researching the history of the long-demolished Toby Jug pub in Tolworth, which - until the bulldozers moved in back in 2002 - was a bus terminus as well as being a famous A3 road pub and music venue, where acts such as Led Zeppelin, David Bowie, Free and The Yardbirds played. I wonder do you, or any of your site visitors, have any images of the pub or the buses that stopped outside it?

Also, if I do eventually get my researches printed, might it be possible to use the superb image of the Duke of Cambridge pub at Shannon Corner, New Malden - a 'sister' Charrington pub to the Toby Jug, also built on the Kingston By-Pass, also with a function room?

Best wishes, and well done on such an Alzheimer's-busting memory-triggering website. You'll never know how much it's appreciated.
Tim Harrison

From: "Hugh Taylor" <isleworthdepot@trolleybus.net>

A few 'Diddlers' had been withdrawn prior to the arrival of the first batch of Q1s. Although some had been delivered in January and February 1948, the official date of entry into service of the Q1s was 1st June 1948 - the changeover was rapid and the last 'Diddlers' ran in late September 1948.

It was interesting to read about the Q1s and the Q.1s. This would have been corrected on overhaul and latterly they were all detailed Q1 on the rear platform wall. Regarding 'Diddlers' on the 667. It did happen occasionally and I have blinds to that effect see attachment.

Hugh Taylor
Author and Preservationist