To commemorate this year’s 60th anniversary of the RF class, we have commissioned a limited edition EFE model of a red Central Area RF, no 505, operating from Kingston Garage (K), as a two man crewed vehicle on Route 215, destination Ripley via Street Cobham, displaying adverts for Country Bus Rover Tickets on the roof panels of the bodywork.
This vehicle was from the batch of RF502-538 that were modified from April 1959 to enable their use as driver only operation buses (OPO), in the Central Bus Area. This involved the fitting of platform doors and a luggage rack just inside the saloon, (resulting in the loss of 2 seats), a new hinged drivers cab window and a reversing light.
However once the conversion of these vehicles had been completed, agreement with the Trade Union could not be reached for their use as OPO buses and consequently, they were de-licensed and placed in store at Grays garage.
This lasted for a period of a month or so, before the batch of vehicles re-entered service as crewed vehicles, with the platform doors bolted in the open position, at Norbiton (NB) and Uxbridge (UX) garages, enabling the replacement of TD type single deck buses.
Agreement was finally made with the Trades Union for the conversion of Central Area routes to OPO in 1964 and on the 18th November that year routes 201 from Norbiton, 206 from Fulwell (FW), 216 from Kingston and 250 from Romford (NS) were converted to one man operation. This enabled the RFs from Kingston to be allocated to other single deck two man crewed routes (this time with the doors operational !) worked from that garage and our model of RF505 shows one such working that took place in 1965 on route 215, prior to OPO conversion in January 1966.
The model is limited to 360 pieces and only a small stock are now available, via mail order, priced at £27 to Members and £30 to non-Members. P&P is £3.75 for the first model and £2.50 for each additional model thereafter.
To enquire about availability, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.