The world of bus preservation awaits me tomorrow, when I'll be heading to Stagecoach's Stonegravels Depot in Chesterfield to collect GCT 113. I'll be ably assisted by a friend, who is acting as chauffeur and technical advisor.
So far, I've secured undercover accommodation for GCT 113; I've got new vinyls scanned and ready to go for the former livery she will wear once again; I've secured a price for her repaint; I've set up insurance and will tax the bus tomorrow while at Chesterfield. I've managed to fathom the font GCT used in its destination blinds from the mid-to-late 1980s and fellow Grimsby bus preservationist Nigel Rhodes has generously offered to lend me one of the number blinds from his preserved single-decker Daimler Fleetline, 35 (GEE 418D), so that a copy can be made.
I have an extensive timetable archive and repository from the 1980s and 1990s and this has become invaluable in getting the feel right for the bus's interior. Going through all my photos of buses in Grimsby and Cleethorpes - from the very first ones I took using my dad's camera when I was 10, to the more modern shots of yesteryear - I've spotted a number of internal signs and notices than can be reproduced to ensure the bus has a more authentic interior.
Sadly, I'm not in the slightest bit mechanically minded and I have often wondered if this really is the ideal project for me to undertake. I'm fortunate, though, to have a number of friends and acquaintences whom I can call on to assist should I need help.