Days of a lighter shade of pale green on our buses

CONDUCTING A conductor supervising a turning in Titchfield Square, 1957
CONDUCTING A conductor supervising a turning in Titchfield Square, 1957
jpns-22-07-17 retro July 2017

Adventure park - These boys were digging holes to install one of the constructions which will be built in the adventure playground at Arundel Street, Portsmouth (0739-2)

THIS WEEK IN 1976: Landport children to make their own adventure playground

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People who have lived in the Gosport and Fareham area for a few decades will recall the days when there were three bus companies sporting various shades of green.

They were Provincial, in dark green colours, which plied mostly along the main road and served Rowner and Bridgemary.

UNCHANGING A bus heading along Common Lane, Titchfield, which hasnt changed much over the years, 1967

UNCHANGING A bus heading along Common Lane, Titchfield, which hasnt changed much over the years, 1967

Then came Southdown wearing a much lighter apple green and cream livery. Its buses came into Fareham from Portsmouth and Warsash.

Finally there was Hants & Dorset which had a large garage set back off the road in the centre of Fareham. Its buses were a different shade of green altogether – lighter than Provincial, but darker than Southdown.

If you remember all of those, a new book published by the Provincial Society, a local transport heritage charity, will take you down memory lane.

Local transport historian, Fred York has written about his recollections and shared 100 of his own black and white photographs in a book to be launched at this year’s Provincial rally at Stokes Bay this Sunday.

ROUTE Hartlands Road, Fareham. A bus passes houses where the current bus station stands, 1965

ROUTE Hartlands Road, Fareham. A bus passes houses where the current bus station stands, 1965

Fred reminds us what the area was like in the late 1950s up to 1979 when the roads were quieter and there were several green buses on our streets.

The fitting title of his book is A Different Shade of Green. It has been produced this year to mark the centenary of Hants & Dorset.

All of the companies have long disappeared, but our memories live on. Take a dip into his book and it won’t be long before you are trying to remember what you were doing or what buildings are in the same place now.

Rear open platforms on double deckers are a thing of the past but the picture on the right, taken in 1957, shows a conductor watching out as his bus reverses in Titchfield Square – common practice in the past.

These and many other pictures feature in the book and have local historical significance for anyone who loves the Solent region.

The book is available, at £10, from the Provincial Society at provincialsociety.org.uk. Sunday’s rally is from 10am until 5pm.