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AC Cars Railbus

WR railbus services map

WR Preparations

The WR were to use them on the Kemble - Cirencester (Town) and Kemble - Tetbury branches.

Official delivery dates were 79975 - Aug. '58, 79976 - Sep. '58, 79977 - Oct. '58 and 79978 - Dec. '58, all allocated to Swindon. Observations noted 79975 at Southall on 12/7/58, and then working the Kemble to Tetbury branch on 1/8/58, probably for testing or driver training.

79976 ran over the Tetbury branch on the 16th September '58 for driver training. At this time it was thought the branch would change to diesel early in December '58. It was planned to re-open Culkerton and provide two new halts. The potential for the line wasn't great, Tetbury was a small market town with under 4,000 people, and Kemble, although a very busy junction, was just a village and the main local traffic was dealt with by buses to Cirencester, Stroud and Bristol. One railbus was to be used on each of the Tetbury / Cirencester branches, the other two spares.

Noted at Swindon on 16/11/58 were W79975/6. AC Cars Railbus at Swindon

In the image W79976 appears to be on display at Swindon in this picture, in ex-works condition judging by the cleanliness of the fuel tank. Dick Hymas Collection.

On Sat 31st January 1959 a Swindon crew brought a railbus to Kemble to start the service the following Monday morning. Their return working was 5804 and one coach, which had just worked the last steam service from Tetbury. This train made an unofficial stop at the new Trouble House halt, where many passengers visited the local hostelry. The 30 min stop would no doubt have been longer had the crew change not to be made! The last steam service on the Cirencester line was Sunday 1st February.

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