BaMMOT

Bank holiday weekend – no plans, and we try to avoid going out on the Monday – but Sunday was fine and clear – a good day for photography? We decided on a new destination (but, again, one I’d been aware of for some time) – the Transport Museum at Wythall, just south of Birmingham, home of BaMMOT – the Birmingham and Midland Motor Omnibus Trust. (By a curious coincidence, the first clue in today’s Guardian crossword was “Large volume one may take to work (7)”. Yes, you’ve got it!)

I’m not sure what I’d expected – something akin to some of the smaller railway preservation schemes perhaps, with lots of rotting old vehicles strewn around? Quite the opposite – this is a fine collection of well-restored, clean and shiny vehicles (apart from a few clearly undergoing restoration in the workshops). As a student in Birmingham in the early 70s, those old Guy half-cabs were a distinctive feature of city life – as were the slightly odd-looking Midland Red vehicles used on the longer routes. And here they all were again – wonderful! And not just to look at – regular bus rides are available throughout the day. We took a great trip in old JOJ 976, dating from 1953, out of the museum to Maypole in the south Birmingham suburbs, almost ten miles round trip – for just £1.50 each! A bit more than the 6p and 8p fares we used to pay, but excellent value for a little bit of nostalgia (and yes, we had the front seats at the top…)

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