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29th June  2017

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Regal started stage carriage services on 2nd April 2002. One of their first two Essex County Council contract services was the one-bus 381/2 service, which was taken over from Arriva. All bar one morning journey passed back to them in August 2006. By that stage there has been considerable expansion across Essex, including nearby Waltham Abbey area services 211-3 and evening and Sunday 240/250/251. In a complete reserve of fortunes, the Autumn 2010 tenders brought Regal back to Harlow on a broad range of contract services, including the 381 and associated routes.

The early fleet consisted of elderly minibuses, but upgrades over the years now see a combination of high profile vehicles bought new and selected second hand vehicles for lower cost contract services. A new and more contemporary livery was also launched in 2010.

The quality of the operation has been the subject of much debate at times, not helped in the public domain by two de-roofings.

Vehicles from Panther Travel have been observed in operation as substitutes at times.


MAN14.240/Alexander-Dennis Enviro 200
Independents are know for occasional unusual choices of vehicle. Having purchased one MAN vehicle in 2008, a second has followed, but of a different configuration.

The contrast between new and old liveries is well illustrated by  fleet number 702 here when compared with 601 a few pictures below. (Richard Hudson). 

Alexander-Dennis Enviro 200 Dart
November 2014 arrivals were represented by relatively new and standard vehicles, looking well-presented in new colours.


Regal MX10DXO

Seen in December 2014 when fresh into service, 652 has yet to have its LED display programmed. A "381" paper is in the window, partly covered by the wiper. (R Hudson)   
    Regal YN09HZA Showing the nearside and with LED working is 650, just arrived on the 380. (R Hudson)   

Optare Tempo
Three vehicles were purchased for the Essex Pullman service 1 between Chelmsford and Canvey, for which a dedicated livery was applied. Sightings in Harlow are rare. PO2, registered YJ06WVC, was destroyed by fire in April 2016, PO1 was withdrawn in spring 2017.


Regal YJ56WVX

One of those rare outings of a Tempo to Harlow was caught here on the rural and infrequent 47 service. P01 is the vehicle shown (R Hudson). 
      Regal YJ56WVY The fleet number can clearly be seen on PO3. (R Hudson). 

Transbus Mini Pointer Dart
Also acquired new are these two low floor buses. Purchased for Chelmsford local services, for a good while they featured regularly on the Sunday 200 and 201, before those services passed back to Arriva. 602  now has LED displays fitted and carries the new red contemporary livery, whilst 601 retains conventional blinds.

Regal Busways Transbus Mini Pointer Dart 601

In picturesque rural setting, 601 shows it's original haunt, and dedicated "village link" branding. The vehicle still carries the branding today, even though it no longer works that service, and generally now looks down at heel. (Regal Busways).   
    Regal YN04PZZ The newer livery, on the other hand is a welcome upgrade, as seen on 602 whilst working the once a week 147 variant of the 47. (R Hudson)

Optare Solo Slimline 7.1m/7.8m
The vehicle that in many ways saw off the last of the very small and narrow minibuses, is now available in a rather small and narrow variety. Regal have built up a significant fleet
and these are regular performers in Harlow. Initially small 7.1m vehicles were purchased (201 to 205), but the '60' registered batch are of the longer 7.8m variety. 201/2/3 departed in November and December 2014, others seem now to be following.

Seen at Duxford 2007 is slim and short Solo 203. (R Hudson).   
    The newer version of the livery is shown on longer 207 (YJ60KBY), here performing a Sunday duty on route 4. (R Hudson).  


MAN/Wright Eclipse Meridian
Regal have a wide spread of services throughout Essex, offering a wide quality of vehicles. An example of something at the higher end of the scale are these 2 vehicles. 
Regal MAN/Wright Eclipse Meridian RG09BUS2 Fleet number 801 carried a  body-style adaptation of the traditional livery when delivered, but has since been repainted to fit current standard. (R Hudson).   

Whilst 802, seen at Duxford 2009, was delivered in the new contemporary livery. (R Hudson).   

Volvo B7TL/Wright Eclipse Gemini
April 2017 saw the arrival of 2 former London General double decksers. Of these, LF52ZSD has been seen in service still wearing London livery and without working destination equipment.
Regal Volvo B7TL/Wright Eclipse Gemini LF52ZSD Once weekly rural service 147 plays host to a vehicle which almost certainly has plenty of seats to spare.  (R Hudson).   



Dennis Trident/Alexander ALX400
Arriving in early 2012, the body shape of these vehicles, combined with the contemporary red Regal livery, make for a striking and modern appearance. Operation on the Chelmsford to Epping services is not unusual. Three examples were purchased in total, but 1301 (X298NNO) and 1303 (X387NNO) both suffered low-bridge accidents. Further additions have replaced them. Although 1302 carries fleet livery, T697KPU is plain red and 1304 is plain blue!

1302 is seen here on the infrequent route 390 heading for Upshire. (R. Hudson).   
    Regal X263NNO Waiting to take up service on the 47, 1304 stands without fleet name or livery, blinds or a recent wash!  (R. Hudson). 


Dennis Trident/Plaxton President
The most recent double deck type to enter service were 4 former Metroline buses of this type, converted to single door. 1401 suffered a relatively minor low-bridge incident in May 2016 and so we are not certain whether or not it has returned or will return to service. Two other examples have left.

Regal Busways Dennis Dart SLF/Plaxton Pointer II 611 (X211ONH)

Perhaps an unlikely visitor to the rural 390 service, this President has taken over where previously equally unlikely double deckers left off. (R Hidson).   

Dennis Dart SLF/Plaxton Pointer II
The longer and now more standard version of the Dart SLF is represented in the Regal fleet, the first entrant being 611.

Note that the "02" registered vehicles are badged Transbus/Alexander Pointer and originated with Armchair before that fleet was absorbed into the Metroline main operation.

Regal Busways Dennis Dart SLF/Plaxton Pointer II 611 (X211ONH)

611 entered service in a silver livery, which it carried for some time, this was followed by traditional fleet livery, but it has now gained a contemporary front with side advertising for Braintree Freeport.  (R. Hudson).   
    Regal Busways Dennis Dart SLF/Plaxton Pointer II R510SJM The new livery shows just what a transformational step forward has been achieved, as shown by R510SJM. W136WGT carries the same livery. (R. Hudson)
    Regal KP02PVD White is carried by the two former Armchair and Metroline vehicles. (R. Hudson)

Dennis/Plaxton Mini Pointer Dart
The shorter version of this vehicle from the Dennis era is illustrated below. 614 and 615 operated with Trustybus for a time, on loan. Both retain Metroline livery. The 52-registered examples are summer 2015 arrivals, once of Western Greyhound.

The blind display on 614 might seem to some passengers to be carrying a general apology, perhaps for the appearance of the vehicle! 615 looks the same but with a dark red front bumper. (R. Hudson).
    Regal NA52AWF The colours of NA52AWF, here, and also of NA52AWM are of the demised Western Greyhound. (R. Hudson).


Mercedes-Benz 0814D / Plaxton Cheetah
More of a mini-coach, this vehicle sees occasional bus service operation.

Regal YN06RVP

The wide variety of vehicle shapes, sizes and colours which appear on the 47 is exemplified once again here by this one-off in the Regal fleet. (R Hudson) 

DAF SB4000 / Van Hool Alizee T9
These vehicles have seen some service on rural routes in Harlow, most notably immediately following the withdrawal of non-DDA vehicles.

Regal YJ03PGZ

The appearance of coaches on rural services is illustrated by PGZ waiting to take up service on the 47 here at Harlow Bus Station. (R Hudson) 
    Regal YJ03PKK PKK is seen leaving the bus station with the programmed dot-matrix display is use, also on the 47. (R Hudson) 

Neoplan Tourliner
Regal introduced route X10, the effective replacement for the Olympian 741, utiising this class of vehicle. MX10DFK was been observed to be the regular performer. Unfortunately the service did not last too long.

Regal MX10DFK

Seen laying over at the bus station and with an X10 label in the windscreen is MX10DFK (R Hudson) .

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