Ensign Bus has decorated one of their vehicles in a special livery to celebrate their 50th Anniversary.
Ensignbus was formed in 1972, since which time it has been involved in many aspects of the bus industry. In the early days a number of small contracts were operated for people such as the Port of London Authority and Lesney the toy manufactures.
These small operations however became secondary to the role which Ensign has today made its own, that of buying and selling high quality used buses and coaches.
|Ensign have painted a Volvo B9TL with Wrightbus Gemini 2 bodywork, in a special livery to celebrate their 50th Anniversary|
Although well known for selling vehicles around the world it was not until London Transport's (LT) controversial decision to start phasing out the 'DMS' class double deck, that Ensign became perhaps the best known bus dealer in the country.
With LT insistent that the full quota of some near 2,000 vehicles be sold to one bidder, the number of interested parties was of course somewhat limited. Whilst some operators were keen to take a few vehicles no one was prepared for, or required 2,000, such buses. At the deadline for tenders to be in, it became quite clear that Ensign was the only serious contender for this mammoth task.
The DMS vehicles soon started arriving and Ensign was forced to move to larger premises at Purfleet in Essex. Here the vehicles were brought immediately following their withdrawal from LT service. On arrival they were thoroughly checked over for any faults before being 'De-Londoned' which meant that certain features that had been insisted upon for London service, and had often been unpopular, were removed.
Ensign's 15 acre yard at Purfleet was a sea of red as the DMS's started to arrive. Nearly 2,000 would pass through here with most finding new homes either in the UK or overseas.
Ensign operate a fleet of smart buses and In more recent years Ensign’s core operating area has been focused on its Essex home, with a fleet of blue and silver vehicles serving a commercial network centred on Lakeside shopping centre and serving nearby towns and villages.
Ensign also specialises in emergency rail replacement, while this summer its open top buses will again be seen on Southend seafront duties. The business is also well known for its collection of heritage coaches and buses.
Ensign Fleet List here