This page showcases the best images of GCT 113 from her year built (1976) to 2016.
GCT 113 passed to me for private preservation on 24 August 2017.
Images taken from 26 August 2017 to the end of that year are shown in the 2017 Gallery.
Subsequent images thereafter are shown within their own Gallery page, starting with the 2018 Gallery.
**NEWLY UPLOADED IMAGES WILL BE ADDED TO THE BOTTOM OF THE PAGE**
This is the oldest photo I have of GCT 113, wearing the blue and cream livery she was delivered in on 14 December 1976. The bus is seen here outside the GCT depot. GCT 113 lost this livery quite late on (1984); this photo can be dated to before September 1980, which is when her first re-paint took place and GCT 113 was given the short-lived blue and white livery (applied to buses painted between 1980-81).
The bus also has its original front, below the windscreen, with the cut-out displaying a Daimler badge in what was the demister inlet. You'll note Daimler badge, while inside the bus was badged as a Leyland.
This photo by Nigel Rhodes shows GCT 113 in the background, wearing her first coat of Stagecoach stripes. You'll note she also has her front fog lights in situ and orange-painted safety rails on the top deck. The photo was taken on 23 November 1994, at the end of GCT 113's first season as an open-topper.
Daimler Fleetline 103 (BJV 103L) is in the foreground and at this point it had been sold to Pleasurewood Hills (owners of Pleasure Island, for whom the overall advert promotes), though operated and maintained by GCT. One of the more obvious differences between the two vehicles is the opening top deck windows.
What seemed to be an innocuous photo of a GCT Fleetline at Riby Square in 1990 has turned out to be the only photo I've yet to find of GCT 113 wearing her only rear-end advertisement (for The Plant Shop). I was more than shocked when I was offered it from Nigel Rhodes's collection.
This is the second application of the advert, as it was originally applied in 1987 while GCT 113 wore caramel and cream livery. It was reapplied in 1989, after it had been retained when the bus received orange and white livery. It had been lost by August 1990.
While much has changed in Grimsby since GCT 113's day, this scene remains similar.
I don't believe this is one of my photos, but it could be. Following the removal of her roof during early 1994 and her repaint into Stagecoach stripes livery, GCT 113 was delicensed for six months a year, over the winter, and parked at the back of the main area of the 'Fridge' (the easternmost roofed building, so named due to the temperature therein).
The front fog lights have been removed and this took place while she was painted in the dark-blue, all-over Pleasure Island livery from April 1997 for two years, so this dates the photo between the end of 1999 to very early 2003, when GCT 113 was given Stagecoach's swoops livery.
GCT 113 always had a sheet over her upper saloon during the winter months and it is notable to see it missing in this photo.
Unwittingly, this was the last ever photo of GCT 113 I took while operational at Grimsby. I'd been allocated the bus all day towards the end of the Summer 2003 season and had returned to the depot for my meal break.
The 'day glow' destination blind recreated times past with a 'Grimsby Cleethorpes' display, as per the original ones from 1957 and this is displayed deliberately here. This is GCT 113's first application of Stagecoach swoops livery and the incorrect Stagecoach 'in Grimsby & Cleethorpes' fleet name (it should have been 'Grimsby-Cleethorpes').
By contrast, the first time that I caught up with GCT 113 after she'd been withdrawn from passenger duty at Grimsby was at the Easter 2006 bus rally, organised by the LVVS (Lincolnshire Vintage Vehicle Society) and based at the Lincolnshire Road Transport Museum in Whisby, near Lincoln.
GCT 113 looks to have been rallied in much the same condition as she was in when last operating Service 17 along Cleethorpes seafront.
Frustratingly, the assault screen remains in place. This would be removed during September 2017 while in private ownership!
GCT 113 had acquired a traditional GCT number blind and what looks to be a destination blind from a Tiger or F/G-reg Dominator, hence the black tape, obscuring other destinations that would otherwise be shown on the front.
Being compared to the 'back end of a bus' is an oft-quoted insult, though I've always been of the opinion that the 'back end' of a GCT Fleetline is quite an attractive design. Dated, I'll grant you, but nonetheless attractive.
11 years would pass before GCT 113 would again be a part of a LVVS rally - when in November 2017 it was hersecond rally in private ownership.
The second occasion that I bumped into GCT 113 was by accident. I'd headed to Stoke, to attend a Potteries Running Day in 2007.
Here GCT 113 can be seen doing what she was acquired for: being used as a promotional vehicle.
Still sporting that (now) retro white steering wheel, as synonymous with Grimsby as the bus type herself, GCT 113 had received in-house external adverts to promote the new-look network of local bus services in Barnsley.
Following the Traction Group purchase in December 2005, Stagecoach's Chesterfield depot 'moved' from the local East Midland group to the newly set-up Yorkshire one, with the log book for GCT 113 showing this taking place during April 2007.
With Stagecoach keen to work its magic on the former 'Tracky' area, a new Barnsley network was produced and GCT 113 visited the town on a number of occasions where residents and passengers could obtain new timetables and other literature pertaining to the changes.
A traditional GCT number blind continues to be in situ on the back, along with more promotional advertising for the new Barnsley network.
Service 3F (the 'F' standing for Freeman Street) was a remnant of municipal operation lasting, quite astonishingly, until 2006, when 56-reg ADL Darts were acquired. The inter-worked circular services 3F & 4/4X became LoZone 13 & 14/14A and now 3 & 4/4A.
There are precious few photos of GCT 113 wearing her only all-over advertisement livery. This is one of them that I found for sale at a bus rally a few years ago. Pleasure Island theme park paid for this livery to be applied for 2 years. Sister open-topper 103 also wore an identical version of the livery.
Seen at the Cleethorpes Pier terminus, GCT 113 is loading passengers bound for Thorpe Park. An integral part of the special livery was a great rear-end promotion for McCormack's family fun bar and restaurant located at the front of Pleasure Island and still open today. The livery was worn between April 1997 & April 1999.
Roy Marshall's great shot of GCT 113 turning right out of George Street in Grimsby town centre depicts the solitary rear-end advert that she wore from 1987 to 1990 for The Plant Shop.
This was the last livery she wore before losing her roof and acquiring Stagecoach stripes in 1994. The paint job looks fairly recent, so I'd suggest the photo was taken in 1989 contrasting with Andy Reeve-Smith's photos below (1991), that show the livery a little more worn and devoid of rear-end advert. This livery was always my favourite and reason enough to be recreated on GCT 113.
As you'll have read in the Detailed History section of the website, GCT 113 returned home during Summer 2014 offering, for the first time since she left, a two-bus open-top operation along Cleethorpes seafront.
Leyland Olympian/Northern Counties 14667 (PIW 4457 (H667 BNL)) replaced GCT 113 directly during July 2005 and the two had never previously worked together.
Frustratingly, neither bus shows a destination display and both had one fitted. The photo was taken at Sea Road in Cleethorpes on 14 June 2014 by 'memory snatcher'.
Daniel Shaw has captured this 'in service' photo of GCT 113 shortly after her first repaint into Stagecoach swoops corporate livery.
Seen here on 12 June 2003, GCT 113 is heading towards Cleethorpes Pier along Kingsway with long-time GCT and Stagecoach driver 'Bubbles' at the helm.
Note the assault screen and the fluorescent number and destination blinds. The handrails that lined the edges of the upper saloons had also been painted red, from orange.
The Disabled Discrimination Act of 1995 gave the Transport Secretary the necessary power to improve accessibility on public transport through numerous (now) commonplace means. These changes were contained in the Public Service Vehicle Accessibility Regulations (PSVAR) 2000 and included the phasing out of step-entrance buses and coaches operating registered stage-carriage services.
1 January 2017 was the cut-off point for double-deckers (single-deckers, sub-divided into two weight-determined categories, had previously needed to conform) and this sadly meant that GCT 113 would be unable to operate in passenger service on a registered bus service ever again.
(An exemption of up to 28 days a year is permitted, provided the journeys the bus is making are advertised as 'historic'.)
A number of first-generation Dennis Tridents would also fall foul of the PSVAR, despite being of low-floor stature, and to mark their passing, Stagecoach in Chesterfield ran a special Trident Farewell Day on Saturday 13 August 2016, based around the town and GCT 113 joined in, as she too would be so affected by the end of that year.
It is believed that this is the last time GCT 113 ran in passenger service.
Soon after these photos (by Steven Knight Media) were taken, the bus was repainted in readiness for Showbus, held at Donington Park for the first time.
The orange and white livery is displayed here in two shots of GCT 113 taken in 1991 by Andy Reeve-Smith at Grimsby's Freshney Place bus station. The location opened two years earlier and sadly closed rather prematurely on 6 January 2014.
From her delivery on 13 December 1976 to February 1994, GCT 113 ran with a roof and operated all double-decker routes for GCT in four different liveries.
Service 45, once operated in partnership with Lincolnshire Road Car, was the longest route the municipal undertaking ran, with the terminus being outside the (now demolished) Lock Inn on ABP property.
This livery is the most synonymous to me and the reason why GCT 113 is in this colour scheme, now in private ownership.
The front fog lights have been refitted, which were lost under Stagecoach tenure. The front indicators, both on the sides and front have been replaced for more modern versions and the wing mirrors became the black oval type even under GCT tenure. The rear light clusters have also now been replaced for more modern examples.
By 1991 GCT 113 had lost her rear-end advert for The Plant Shop. The orange livery was only worn from 1989 to 1994.
This is my favourite photo of GCT 113. During August 2003, while returning empty to the depot for my meal break, I diverted via Grimsby Docks to try and create an iconic photo in which GCT 113 would feature.
Grimsby's docks were once the largest in the world, and at the time they purported to be the largest in Europe (Grimsby was known as 'Europe's Food Town'), yet as time passed by and manufacturing developed, much of the dockyards had been abandoned.
The photo was taken on Wharncliffe Road North one Saturday lunchtime with the Grimsby Dock Tower in the background.
Tram lines are still evident (as they are to this very day, according to Google Street View) and this area of the docks is still used today. Other, more derelict areas, resemble Bulgaria at the turn of the 20th Century, though are sadly less photogenic.
During 2003, buses regularly operated onto Grimsby Docks - peak time extensions to Service 5 (5X), the first two Cleethorpes-bound journeys on Service 3F (3A) and Ross Youngs paid for Service 21 to call, linking its factory with the Willows and the route of Service 45 to Immingham and then to South Killingholme.
Today the sight of public transport on Grimsby Docks is non-existent. Security has also been heightened here.
The non-political caramel and cream livery is displayed here in a photo from The Bus Gallery. This livery was introduced from 1981. Coincidentally, the photo depicts GCT 113 at the Sea Road bus stop, adjacent to Cleethorpes Pier - the bus stop that was also the terminus for Service 17, a route that she would operate for many years to come.
Taken in April 1988, the caramel and cream livery was on its way out and the following year GCT 113 would receive orange and white livery. For many, the caramel and cream livery will always be their least favourite, chosen purely because it showed up dirt the least.
The last time I caught up with GCT 113 before I bought her was at Donington Park during September 2016, the new 'home' of Showbus.
She had recently been repainted and had the panels covering the former fog lights removed (ironically something I resurrected during December 2017). The black steering wheel almost camouflages the analogue tachograph.
Other than modern equivalents of indicator and side light clusters, GCT 113 is almost identical to how she looked during her orange and white livery days (minus its roof, of course).
This great 'at work' shot of GCT 113 taken by Tony Wilson depicts the bus returning to Cleethorpes Pier along Kingsway with Cleethorpes Leisure Centre in the distance.
I would date this photo as being taken in the year 2000 owing to the removal of the metal clip board from the dashboard (as can be seen here) and the small green vinyl by the emergency door button, promoting the bus's green fuel credentials. The driver's shirt is white, not blue and this will be the bus's second application of Stagecoach stripes livery.
I've often thought that this livery, with its horizontal lines, suited her well.
In 2009 GCT 113 attended the Meadowhall Bus Rally, located in the former coach park (that doubled up as a Helipad!) and was one of the vehicles that ran short circular trips from the site to the Sheffield Bus Museum. (Photo: Nigel Rhodes)
It was at this event that GCT 113 was reunited with GCT 35 (GEE 418D) & GCT 57 (NAT 766A (TJV 100)), though sadly time wasn't made for the vehicles to pose together.
Certainly, GCT 113's time at Chesterfield saw her visit places she would never have done had she continued to operate along Cleethorpes seafront!
This is the first photo I managed to take that recreates times past at Stallingborough Roundabout, a location between Immingham Docks and Cleethorpes High Street on Service 45, one of the long-standing GCT routes. It was taken on 12 December 2016.
Service 45 effectively saw off the Grimsby & Immingham Electric Tramway and was incredibly popular with dockworkers travelling between Grimsby's Riby Square and Immingham Docks. So much so that a special token (known as a 'button') was issued that offered a return fare between these two points.
GCT 113 operated Service 45 on countless locations over the years, except, of course, with her roof on!
Taken on 12 December 2017 this is the last photo taken of GCT 113 in Stagecoach's corporate 'swoops' livery that was first applied in 2003.
It was taken at the Immingham paint shop as I handed her over for the first repaint, which would see an error made by my paint rep (whom I'd trusted to get the correct paint colours since he was the individual who supplied the exact same paint to GCT in the 1980s) that would result in the bus wearing the prototype orange not the shade ultimately adopted.
This photo was also taken shortly before GCT 113 was taken on an unauthorised 'jolly' covering 72 unauthorised miles; I have images of this from CCTV cameras on the factory opposite.