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Homepage. This page: Rear view of a pre-war omnibus commandeered for use by the British Army during WW2.

RASC Bus Service.

Vehicles of all shapes and sizes were requisitioned for use by the Services during WW2. Cars, coaches, motorcycles and lorries were all commandeered, many of which found their way into Army service. Mark emailed this photograph over of a double decker bus that had been pressed into service by the RASC, or Royal Army Service Corps.
While two young ladies undoubtably add a touch of glamour to proceedings, the real star of this photo is the battered old bus they're with. Some of the windows have been covered over, and it sports serial number L784529 on its rear panel. Above the serial is a legend proclaiming its new operators to be the "784 COY RASC (M) CA??? Bus Service". Perhaps records for 784 Company will shed light on where this requisitioned old bus might have served during the war?
Notes on the rear of the photo tell that the ladies were named Jackie & Fookie (...), and that the photo was taken in November 1945. They were stood with one of "... 'S' platoon's buses ...".
It would appear that old, pre-wartime, signwriting is beginning to appear under the war-finish paint applied to the bus, below the top rear window. But what did it read - "Collo......" perhaps?
(Please click the thumbnail to view full-size image.)
Royal Army Service Corps bus
Hopefully someone will be able to identify the bus' manufacturer and the coachwork. If it had been of British origin, perhaps with wartime utility bodywork, I'd have expected to see an entrance to the nearside rear corner, unless originally there was one, and it has been panelled over. Does the cross painted on the rear of the bus have significance? Mark wonders if it could have been a mobile chapel, or a church?
Thanks for sending the photo over :-)
Return to Page 16 in the photograph gallery.
There are several interesting photographs of buses in use with the Services during WW2 on the site. One is this oddball machine, in use with the RAF in Egypt. Another example is a K-Series Austin coach, in the livery of the Canal Army Bus Service, again in Egypt.

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