Brighton Trolleybuses - Memories and Preservation

Brighton trolleybus at Clapham Museum - 7 May 1961
At Clapham Museum - 7 May 1961
Picture from Geoff Bannister

From: "Bob Howells" <>

Have you any idea where CPM 61 now resides and is it in restored condition and accessible to view?

From: "John Wignall" <>

Having just looked at your site, I can only say Keep up the good work! Being a Brighton exile for over forty years [oops, giving my age away] and now living in the midlands, the memories came flooding back. I last saw BH&D CPM 61 at Carlton Colville - it was in a sorry condition. I only hope that by now it has been restored to its former glory.

From: "Martin Nimmo" <>

BH&D trolleybus CPM 61 was, until a few years ago, on loan to the East Anglia Transport Museum at Carlton Colville. This vehicle is part of the Science Museum's collection, having originally been presented to the Museum of British Transport at Clapham.

The Science Museum's bus collection is kept at the National Museum of Science and Industry's site at NMSI Wroughton, Red Barn Gate, Wroughton, Wiltshire, SN4 9NS. The site is accessible four miles south of Swindon [M4 jct 15 or 16, or Thamesdown bus 49 from Swindon Bus Station]. According to information published in the March 2007 issue of "Buses" magazine, the site offers free tours at 10.30 and 12,30 on the first and third Wednesdays of each month from March onwards. However. it is not clear that the trolleybus may always be on view - the site extends to six hangars! Telephone 01793 846200 or email for more information.

To my knowledge, although in operable condition, little restoration work has been done since it was prepared for presentation by BH&D back in 1959. It certainly operated on the Teesside, though I may be incorrect in this assumption.

From: "Len Liechti" <>

Just to say I enjoyed your picture gallery of Brighton trolleybuses today - nice one. Happened on the site whilst Googling to see whether Middleton Press have finally got round to doing Brighton Trolleybuses yet - they have, and about time too. I was starting to think I'd have to write the thing myself when I retire!

Although resident in Bath almost 40 years now, I was born in Brighton in 1949 and grew up in Prince's Crescent just off Ditchling Road, and therefore had more than a passing familiarity with the 26/26A services. I remember vividly how they used to whizz up the steep bit between Open Market and St Saviour's even with eight standing. I also occasionally used the 44 from The Level to Seven Dials for visits to the Children's Hospital in lower Dyke Road. I seem to remember that the 44 had no turning circle at Black Rock and had to dewire and reverse under battery power into a side turning - is that correct?

I was at school with Merv Stedman who had a major input into the "No Trolleys to Aquarium" video, and who was always a bus nut even in those halcyon teenage days. Are you acquainted with him? Please mention my name to him if you are.

Did a stint as conductor in what they'd now call my "gap year" 1967/8 - almost mandatory for students in the late sixties when BH&D had continual staff shortages. Trolleys were long gone by then, of course, but I did work KSWs and FSFs on route 5/5B and occasionally open-top Lodekkas on sea-front 17. Happy Days.

Still visit Brighton on occasion and can't get used to a bus-less Old Steine. Sic transit gloria mundi. Did connect about ten years ago with a preservation group who kept a KSW at Conway Street. It turned out to be one of the old Whitehawk 5s I used to work on.

Visited the Sandtoft Museum last summer whilst touring the northeast - brought a few memories back, I can tell you. Nice little outfit - could do with a bigger site but they have certainly made the best of what they've got. Friendly bunch too. One of them coerced me into doing twenty miles around the locality on a 1938 fixed-wheel bicycle with a saddle carved out of oak [(well, that hard]. I can still feel the stiffness in my buttocks. I'm currently working with another old Brightonian who is only in his twenties, and had to explain to him exactly what a trolleybus was. These youngsters don't know what they've missed.

From: "Julian Saul" <>

As an old Brightonian born in 1946 I remember the trolleybuses very well. We lived at Cliff road, Black Rock and we used them often, until we moved abroad in 1958. I also bought the Video "No Trolleys to Aquarium" from East Anglia Transport Museum. I have a couple of very nice Corgi Brighton trolleybuses. I have seen very few pictures on the number 44 route.

From: "Peter Turvey" <>

The Brighton trolleybus, our inventory number 1997-460, is currently in L4 hangar. As your site states it is not always on public view, so anyone wanting to see it should contact us before visiting.

We have also recently changed our name to Science Museum Swindon and are developing a new website although our old websites [ and] are still active.

Peter Turvey, Head of Knowledge Management, Science Museum Swindon, Wroughton Swindon SN4 9LT. Tel: 01793 846205