Prominent Eastern Coach Works factory recalled during special event at the East Anglia Transport Museum in Lowestoft
PUBLISHED: 13:33 12 July 2017 | UPDATED: 13:33 12 July 2017
Poignant memories of yesteryear were evoked as more than 1,300 people descended on a popular Lowestoft attraction.
A special event at the East Anglia Transport Museum, in Carlton Colville, over the weekend was hailed a success.
Marking 30 years since a major Lowestoft employer closed, the event was held to commemorate the important role the Eastern Coach Works factory played in the town.
The ECW 30th anniversary weekend at the museum in Chapel Road saw more than 1,300 visitors attend over Saturday and Sunday.
A spokesman for the museum said: “The event saw six of the museum’s own fleet running as well as 45 visiting buses over the weekend that were all bodied by Eastern Coach Works.”
It also proved to be an “extra special” event as the last ever bus to leave the factory was re-launched.
“The ‘Lucky Last’ Leyland Olympian was purchased by the museum in 2012 when it was withdrawn from service,” the spokesman said.
“The bus arrived displaying a colourful Blackpool livery of orange and yellow. However the re-launch saw the bus converted back to how it was in 1987 – London Red with broad white central bands, adorned with large SELKENT TRAVEL logos and black skirts as well as having the nearside central doors reinstated.”
The ‘Lucky Last’ was not the only re-launch at the event as the repainted Lowestoft Corporation single Decker (No. 4) was on show. First restored in 1992, and painted by ex-ECW painters after 25 years in preservation, it was then repainted in 2016 and re-launched at the ECW weekend event.
“On the Saturday evening the event brought us a road run in which 25 ECW bodied buses travelled in convoy to Gunton Cliffs passing where the Eastern Coach Works factory once was,” the spokesman said. “With buses ranging from as old as 70 years to the youngest at 30 years it really was a great sight to see and it certainly brought out crowds of people, who were shocked to see such a spectacular sight travelling along the local streets.”
The museum thanked all who attended – both exhibitors and visitors – for helping to make the weekend a success, along with the group of hardworking volunteers.
“We would also like to thank First Eastern Counties for supplying the Park and Ride vehicles as well as the Co-Op food store on Ashburnham Way for allowing the use of their car park,” the spokesman added.
“Attention now turns to the museum’s Trolleybus Weekend event on Saturday, September 23 and Sunday, September 24 where all available vehicles from the fleet with be running.”
Visit www.eatransportmuseum.co.uk for more details.