It’s already one week since our Isle of Man 🇮🇲 adventure, where does the time go!? ...
Here is my summary of what we got up to over the weekend, I hope it is an interesting read! ...
After collecting 441 from the depot, picking up passengers in Morley on the way, the journey to the port of Heysham started.
We sailed Thursday 26/07 on the 1415 departure from Heysham to Douglas, the boat was “Ben-My-Chree” of the IOM Steam Packet Company. The sailing was very pleasant and the experience of conveying the bus by ferry was a first and very expensive one for me!
On arrival at Douglas we were very kindly met by our friend from the Isle of Man transport dept, who gave us some information about the weekend and suitable parking locations for 441, which was left at the ferry terminal on Thursday evening.
Thursday night we took a tram ride to Laxey for some refreshment and socialising with friends who had already arrived on the island.
On Friday after breakfast we took 441 (via the TT course) to a place close to Jurby, where Douglas 50 is kept in store.
We were introduced to the owner of Brian’s first ever bus and it was an absolute pleasure to see the Regent in the metal at last!.
The operation to remove the bus from its resting place of many years was a great challenge for the recovery driver but he managed it in the end and we followed 50 to the Jurby transport museum where we all mucked in to wash the years of dirt off the body.
After spending some time at Jurby, we decided to take 441 to Laxey coach park, spending a leisurely afternoon with friends in Laxey, before heading home to Douglas for tea and a great evening was had by all! ...
The Saturday saw 441 taking in all corners of the island as we used the bus to provide transport for our friends to explore Ramsey, Peel and finally Port Erin.
Unfortunately, during the first leg of our tour, we were involved in an accident where a tree branch came down in front of the bus and smashed the nearside windscreen.
Thankfully nobody was injured and there was no body damage to 441. The bus was able to continue in traffic without issue.
The day ended in Port Erin, with refreshments and great company, before retiring to Douglas in the evening.
Sunday saw us heading to Jurby transport museum, for the big event of the weekend, the spectacle of Mercedes 441, one of Brian’s last Buses, being posed alongside his first ever bus DMN650, the first time this has happened and very appropriate in the 50th anniversary of the former Black Prince bus company.
The way to Jurby was via the mountain road, a gruelling climb into low cloud and we were running with a Bus Vannin double decker, as we duplicated the 19X service bus, driven by our host for the weekend Richard Cranmer!.
The museum at Jurby was really superb and the sight of 441 posed alongside 50 made the whole trip worthwhile, despite the awful weather on this day!.
We also had the great opportunity for Dave to recreate that famous black and white pic of his dad proudly posing with his newly purchased preservation project back in 1968!.
After a great day in the museum, we headed back via the mountain road, enjoying our final meal in Douglas before taking the 0845 ferry on the Monday morning.
The return trip was fine, with both ferry crossings smooth and pleasant.
441 currently resides at the depot in Selby, awaiting a new piece of glass!.
Many thanks to Dave Crowther for driving the bus during the weekend, we all had a really great time! ...