Model Bus Zone News
July 2020
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Thursday 30 July
Epsom Coaches Quality Line Optare Solo Pre-ordering Delayed
Chris Cotton has contacted me to say that he has decided to defer accepting per orders for the Epsom Quality Line Opatre Solo models from 31st July to a later date due to an unexpected delay in the commissioning process of the Corgi models.
Click to enlarge image

Update 2 August
Orders for the models are now scheduled to open in January 2021.

Visit Chris Cotton's online store at

Wednesday 29 July
Photographs of the NMCL Dundee Xplore ADL Enviro400 MMC
Four photographs of a pre-production sample of the forthcoming Dundee Xplore ADL Enviro400 MMC (UKBUS6521) that has been sent to the opertor for approval have been posted by Tony Hunter on the Yardley Wood Bus Club Facebook page.

Click to enlarge

UKBUS6521 Xplore Dundee (route 22 branding) 6695 /SK68 MBO - destinations: 22 Craigowl St Martin Avenue (front) & 22 Craigowl via City Centre (rear) - ADL Enviro400 MMC Single Door

You'll need to be a member or join the group to view postings & the other photographs of this model on this private Facebook group.

Thanks are extended to Peter Turland at the Yardley Wood Bus Club for making me aware of the photographs. He will be stocking these models when released for £43.00 plus p&p.

Tuesday 28 July
Go London Scania Omnidekka Production Photo's
Chris Cotton has received requests for more photographs showing his commissioned Britbus models during their production.
Below are a selection of such photographs showing the latest progress on the still unfinished models.
Click to enlarge Click to enlarge Click to enlarge Click to enlarge

Chris has also provided an update on sales of the models, of which 200 of each destination will be produced. There are now 89 of Clapton Nightingale Road (ES2-04A) version & 91 of the Stratford (ES2-04B) version left, Chris advises that both models are selling quickly
For further details please visit Chris Cotton's online store at

Monday 27 July
Northcord Models Press Release: UKBUS1502
This was published by Northcord Models last week the model is due to be released in Hong Kong later this week. UK release is expected in around four to six weeks time.


Alexander ALX400-bodied Dennis Trident Open-Topper
ukbus 1502 Stagecoach North West ‘White Lady’

Following the significant success in relaunching the casting of the Alexander ALX400-bodied Dennis Trident, Northcord Model Company is now releasing the second livery on the casting - ukbus 1502, a replica of an open-top ALX400-bodied Dennis Trident in the fleet of Stagecoach North West with Ribble White Lady heritage livery.

ukbus 1502 represents fleet number 17012 (S812 BWC).

17012, or TA12 originally, was part of a batch delivered new to Stagecoach East London in 1998 and these were some of the first low floor double-deckers to operate in London. 17012 – 17024 started to migrate North in 2003 when they transferred to Stagecoach North West and were allocated to Morecambe depot. None was used in service at Morecambe in dual door format until after single door conversion at Lillyhall depot and then repaint at Carlisle depot and the majority were branded for services 2/2A (later baylink 2/2A) converting the route to low floor operation at the same time. 17012 – 17016 then moved on again towards the end of 2008 where they were once again sent to Lillyhall depot for conversion but would this time lose their roofs and be repainted into a green variation of Stagecoach livery for use at Kendal depot on Lake District service 599.

This bus is fitted with a tachograph and has been used for hires in the past. To try and further expand this hire work and to make the bus fit in better, it is either used with, or as a replacement for the Routemaster. Stagecoach Cumbria & North Lancashire have painted the bus in a special livery, naming it the White Lady.

This inspiration for the White Lady comes from a number of buses Ribble, one of the precursor companies to Stagecoach CNL Lakes operation, bought in the early 1950’s. These were buses fitted with coach seats and various other embellishments, they were used on express services out of Manchester. The buses were painted in a reversal of the standard Ribble livery which used Ribble Red as a base colour. Because of the reversed livery they became known as White Ladies, even if their base colour was actually cream.

The White Lady has been designed by Ray Stenning of the Best Impressions design agency and is very much inspired by the original rather than being a slavish copy of it.

The ALX400 open-top replica features excellent detailing inside and out. This is a one-piece casting whose clean lines enhance the livery application on which all logos and lettering are clearly legible.

The interior plastic blister has been redesigned to ensure the secure positioning of the model on the plinth by following the shape of the White Lady open-top

The brand-new Alexander ALX400-bodied Dennis Trident Open Top UKBUS1502 bus models will be distributed by John Ayrey Die-Casts Limited (UK), Porte Publishing Company (Japan), 80M Bus Model Shop and Concorde Hobby Shop (HK) respectively. The UKBUS1502 model is limited to 888 pieces worldwide.

Northcord Model Company (NMC)------The World’s Miniature Bus Co.

Sunday 26 July
Go London Omnidekka Progress & Another Commission
Chris Cotton has now finalised the box design for his forthcoming Britbus Go London Models. The box colours match those found on the models, he's also added the RRP price of £60 to the box after discovering a seller was listing the models on eBay for £80. This seller has now had their model orders canceled.
Click to enlarge image

The models are available to order directly from Chris via his online store, where payments can be accepted by PayPal or cheque.

There are also details & a design sheet for another pair of commissioned models which are currently in development. The Corgi OOC models will feature Optare Solo YJ09 MHX in Epsom Coaches Quality Line livery with a choice of either Ham or Morden destinations for route K5.
Click to enlarge image
Chris will start accepting orders for these models in January 2021, they have provisional price of £24 & are currently expected to be released in 2021.

Work is in the early stages on a highly detailed Jotus Resin Specialist Optare Versa model in Go North East livery which will have three route options: 67 – QE Hospital, 28 – Chester – le – St or 78 – Consett.
Another Corgi model being planned is the National Express Caetano Levante coach FJ12 FXZ, it will carry the special rear Welsh Dragon livery. This and the Brighton & Hove Albion allover livery Scania Omnidekka, mentioned in an earlier post, are both scheduled for release next year.

Visit Chris Cotton's online store for full details at

Monday 20 July & Updated 23 July
Another Corgi Model Coach Release
In addition to the models mentioned in my post last Monday (13th) John Ayrey Diecasts has indicated that the following model has also been re-issued by Corgi. This model like the Only Fools & Horses Plaxton Panorama Coach released last week is based on the 1/76th scale OOC tooling.

CC42419 The Beatles Magical Mystery Tour (Fox's of Hayes) - Plaxton Panorama Bedford VAL Coach (This is a re-issue of CC42418 with revised windowed card box)

Update 23 July
This model does have re-designed packaging which is similar to that used for the recently released Only Fools & Horses Plaxton coach model CC02741, the new packaging doesn't appear to include the plastic OOC style display case which is currently illustrated on the Corgi website and was used for the previous CC42418 version issued in 2018.

There is also another earlier issue of this model which is packaged in a large card & blister style box and seems to have been produced for The Beatles Association in 2008. The Corgi product code for this version is BT78210 and currently there are several listed on eBay.

Friday 17 July & Updated 19 July
Go London Britbus Scania Omnidekka Release Rescheduled
Chris Cotton has requested a late revision to his commissioned Scania Omnidekka models and has also decided that the factory should redo the yellow stripe following the original application appearing too pale.
Chris advises that due to the changes the release of his Go London models ES2-04A/B has now been rescheduled for late August.

Update 19th July
Chris has sent the latest photographs from the factory and says...

I have just got this picture from the factory with the new yellow paint put onto one model for me to check. I am now happy with it to be used on the finished models.

The second picture shows the first of the logos applied to the model, please note the lower bumper will be painted grey as they wanted me to check that I am happy with the application.

For further details please visit Chris Cotton's online store at

Friday 17 July
Three New Corgi Beatles Routemasters
Corgi has announced a further three 1/64th scale Routemaster buses for 'The Beatles' collection.

These, like the three previous models released earlier this year, will each have a livery featuring one of the bands classic songs.
In addition to the buses there are also three further taxi models for the same collection.
The Routemasters are all scheduled for release in Winter 2020/21 and have an RRP of £19.99.

CC82339 The Beatles - London Bus - 'Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band'

CC82340 The Beatles - London Bus - 'Revolver'

CC82341 The Beatles - London Bus - 'Let It Be'

Further details of all the models in Corgi's 'The Beatles' range can be found at

Thursday 16 July
Two UK Northcord Model Releases
The following Northcord models have now been released in the UK.

Thanks are extended to Peter Turland at for informing me of these somewhat unexpected releases.

UKBUS1501 (Stagecoach London) - Open Top Alexander ALX400 Dennis Trident

UKBUS6519 Stagecoach Oxford Gold - ADL Enviro400 MMC

Thursday 16 July
Rapido West Midlands Fleetline Progress
The latest newsletter from Rapido Trains contains an update on the progress of their second 1/76th scale UK bus model the West Midlands Leyland Fleetline.

There are photographs showing the first engineering prototype of the models.

Here's the extract from the newsletter, click the thumbnails to view larger versions.

First engineering prototype of our WMPTE Fleetline.
This photo was taken on my HO scale layout.
We really need a proper Brummy 4mm layout...
Phil Parker, are you listening???

First West Midlands Fleetline Photos!

"Hey! Why is there a British bus in your newsletter?" I'll tell you why... Because


The offside details are just as nice.
We're missing two panel lines on the front. They will be added before production.?

The 1980s are back with a bang! The West Midlands Fleetline is an iconic bus design used from the 1970s to the late 1990s in and around Brummigum – voted most amazing city on the planet by the guy I passed on Bristol Road in Edgbaston last November. This is the first model anyone has ever made of the West Midlands Fleetline. And before you get you knickers in a twist, we are also doing the later (more common) headlight arrangement:

Here's the more common, later style headlight arrangement.

And that's all we're going to tell you for now. We'll properly announce the bus, with liveries, product numbers and pricing in the next couple of months. We are open to destination, livery and bus number suggestions! Stay tuned...

You can view the full newsletter with larger photographs HERE.

Tuesday 14 July
Go London Britbus Scania Omnidekka New Website
Chris Cotton now has a website where you can place orders for his upcoming commissioned Go London Dockland Buses Scania Omnidekka models ES2-04A & ES2-04B. Paypal & cheques payments are available.

Anyone who has previously contacted Chris by email to place a order does not need to re-order via the site.

There are also details on the site of two further models which Chris is currently working on.
The first is Epsom Coaches Optare Solo YJ09 MHX in TFL red livery. This will depict the bus on route K5 with options of either Ham or Morden destinations and is "coming soon".

A further Scania Omndekka is the second model which is planned for next year.
This will feature Brighton & Hove's 665 (YN55 NFD) in the special "Albion in the Community" livery for Brighton & Hove Albion FC.

Chris is also seeking help with regards to Go North East Optare Versa 8323 (NK11 FXF), and is looking for vehicle photographs & paint colour codes.

The secure site can be found at

Monday 13 July
Corgi OOC Model Releases This Week
Ace Model Buses have informed me that the following OOC models are expected to be released to model retailers this week.

OM46315A London Transport (Boulogne all over livery / 88 Acton Green) - AEC Routemaster Double Deck Bus

OM46315B London Transport (Boulogne all over livery / 88 Mitcham Cricketers) - AEC Routemaster Double Deck Bus

have further advised that Corgi's Only Fools & Horses Plaxton Panaorama coach will also be released at the same time. This item uses on the existing OOC tooling.

CC02741 Pecy's Luxury Travel, Peckham (Only Fools & Horses 'The Jolly Boys Outing') - Plaxton Panorama Coach

Monday 13 July
Brekina 1/87th Scale Routemasters
Photographs of some early production models have been published by Brekina. The two 1/87th (HO Scale) Routemaster models below are now expected to be released in September. The commissioned open top version for is also expected around the same time.

The Green Line version is based on the same tooling as the red one so comes up a little short of correctly depicting the twin headlights & platform doors found on the RMC version of the Routemaster. (The RMC1432 number applied is also incorrect as 1432 was an RM!) I guess it probably should have been 1482.

Close up of Green Line version

N61100 London Transport Red with gold band RM652 (Heritage Route 15 Tower Hill) - AEC Routemaster RM Bus

N61101 London Transport Green Line RMC1432 (Route 721 London Aldgate) - AEC Routemaster RM Bus

Wednesday 8 July
New Corgi OOC Models Announced
Corgi are producing a Bristol FS Lodekka model to mark Hornby's Centenary. There are two versions of the model which is based on the OOC tooling with either 20 Binns Road or 64 Westwood destinations. The models are limited editions although there no indication to the actual quantities of each. The model are due to be released in the Autumn & have an RRP of £38.99.

CC40801A Hornby Centenary (Binns Road 20) - Bristol FS Lodekka Bus (1/76 scale)

CC40801B Hornby Centenary (Westwood 64) - Bristol FS Lodekka Bus (1/76 scale)

There's also a competition to mark the event with prizes of £100 to spend on the Corgi Online Store.
Further details about the models & competition can be found on the Corgi website.

Wednesday 8 July
Next Oxford Diecast Omnibus Range Release
There's one Omnibus range model in the next batch of Oxford Diecast releases which should with model retailers in the next few days.

76BI005 Thornes of Bubwith - Beadle Integral Coach (1/76 scale)

Saturday 4 July
TiNY Kits Update June/July
Douglas Nicholson has sent a an update on the latest TiNY kits availability and details of two recently announced future kits.
Reservations are advised for upcoming kits as the quantities produced are based closely on reservations received.
A full list of all the currently available kits and the ten other future kits currently in development can be found on the TiNY kits page along with full contact details.

Latest Kit Releases
View all the currently available TiNY kits HERE

CIE, ex GNR(I) AEC RG IV - PRV B45F Very Limited Availabilty

NEW – GNR(I) AEC RG IV - PRV B45R Very Limited Availabilty
Newly Announced Future Kits
View all of the future planned TiNY kits HERE

NEW – CIE SS Bedford VAS School Bus Reserve now

NEW – CIE SS Bedford SB School Bus Reserve now

Friday 3 July
Northcord Models Press Release: UKBUS6519
THe following press release has been issued by Northcord Models in relation to the release of this model in Hong Kong, the UK release is expected during August.

ADL Enviro400 MMC
ukbus 6519 Stagecoach Oxford Gold

Following the significant success in launching the brand new casting of the Alexander Dennis Enviro400 MMC model in the liveries of National Express West Midlands, Stagecoach in Oxfordshire, Bluestar, Stagecoach West Scotland and Southern Vectis, Northcord Model Company is now releasing the ninth livery on the 10.9 metre long, single-door casting – ukbus 6519 in the livery of Stagecoach Oxford with full Gold branding for the famous route 7.

ukbus 6519 represents fleet number 10786 (SN66 VZH) that has 10.9 metre, single door bodywork and was new to Stagecoach in Oxfordshire in 2017. 10786 carries a full Gold branded livery for route 7, showing the destination to Woodstock. The special, comprehensive livery and branding are 100% reproduced onto the ukbus 6519 model. The stand-out features of the branding are : “stagecoach gold” on all sides; “we use Contactless” on the nearside, and “connecting local towns & villages with Oxford” on both sides.

Further additional details carried by the model include the free wifi, and contactless logos at the front, offside and the rear; and, a USB charging logo at the offside and the rear too.

Stagecoach Gold is a luxury bus sub-brand used by various Stagecoach bus subsidiaries in the United Kingdom. Stagecoach Gold (originally Goldline) was launched in 2007 and was designed to attract more middle-class passengers to choose bus travel as a method of transport as well as to reward passengers on some busy and popular routes. Gold routes have a luxury specification whose buses have stitched leather seats, metallic paint, special flooring and free WiFi.

In 2015, all brand-new Stagecoach Gold vehicles came equipped with USB charging facilities underneath every seat which enabled passengers to charge their mobile devices whilst onboard.

In the following year, Stagecoach took the delivery of the first Stagecoach Gold branded Alexander Dennis Enviro400 MMC and Enviro200 MMC vehicles. The liveries on the new buses remained the same as the previous model however Stagecoach slightly modified the interior with new wood effect flooring and updated the upholstery with new style leather seats that incorporate a cream coloured headrest.

The Alexander Dennis Enviro400 MMC ukbus 6519 is a one-piece casting whose clean lines accentuate the square, gasket-mounted windows and the livery application on which all logos and lettering are clearly legible. Another main feature on the ukbus 6519 model is its single tree protector at the front. The front dome on the model is significant, with curved windscreens on both upper deck and lower deck.

Northcord Model Company is also creating new design standards within the interior of both saloons. These features, inside the compartments, will represent the real, outstanding layout of the Enviro400 MMC, such as the extensive portrayal of handrails on upper deck and lower deck, etc.

The brand new 10.9 metre Enviro400 MMC bus models will be distributed by John Ayrey Die-Casts Limited (UK), Porte Publishing Company (Japan), 80M Bus Model Shop and Concorde Hobby Shop (HK) respectively. The UKBUS6519 model is limited to 1008 pieces worldwide.

NMC is aware of production issues that had affected some models of the ukbus6516 batch, and of the complaints that have been raised by some individuals on discussion boards. NMC has worked with its contracted manufacturing facility to try and overcome the issues that affected degradation of the decal and the model coming loose from its retaining lugs during transit. To this end we have insisted that the manufacturing staff apply a polythene sheet between the model roof and the plastic blister (as was common in the CMNL era) and that the tabs at the ends of the acrylic lid are FIRMLY attached to the underside of the plinth.

Northcord Model Company (NMC)------The World’s Miniature Bus Co.

Thursday 2 July
Build The Routemaster Back Issues
Ace Model buses have a few back issues of the Hatchette Build the Routemaster partwork magazine & parts available.

Melvyn Grosberg at Ace Model Buses is building one of these large 1/12th scale models and the photograph below shows the progress of the his model after issue 117.

The back issues can be found on the site.

Melvyn has been taking photographs as he assembles his model & if anyone comes across a problem during the construction of their model, he would be happy to provide advice & photographs, just drop him a email via the contact address shown on his website.
Information kindly supplied by

Wednesday 1 July
New Home Pages For Site Hubs
New screen responsive home pages have been added to all the site hub/home pages expect The Model Bus site.

The new design should mean you will be able to view the previously clipped content that was on the right hand side of the page on mobile & tablets. My next project will be to alter the navigation buttons so these collapse into hamburger button menu on smaller screens when not needed.

Unfortunately if your using the Internet Explorer browser you'll likely see some issues with incorrectly sized pictures on these pages. I've yet to find a work around for this IE specific problem.

I've tested the new pages on a large number of popular browsers:- Brave, Google Chrome, Firefox, Opera, Opera GX & Microsoft Edge(old version & latest vesion).
If you experience any issues in other browsers or any of the above, please let me know.

 June 2020  Model Bus Zone News Index August 2020