Outing to Alton Bus Rally and Mid-Hants Railway
20 July 2014
Over 30 members and friends boarded a 1966 Bristol Greyhound coach and a 1958 Bristol bus for this outing on a fine summer day. There was a break for coffee at the Holiday Inn near Stonehenge before continuing the journey to Alton. Our two vehicles joined the display of around 150 buses and coaches on the rally site at Anstey Park. There were also classic cars, lorries, vans and motorcycles. Preserved buses also operated on free services from the site to Alton railway station and a number of other destinations.
Most of our group went on to Alton railway station to board the next service to Alresford, a journey of around 35 minutes. The train was hauled by former Southern Railway locomotive no. 850 Lord Nelson. Lunch was fitted in on the train or at Alresford. Some of us then retraced our steps to have time to look around the bus rally. Others decided to break their journey on the railway and look around one of the intermediate stations. The lines locomotive works is at Ropley and Medstead and Four Marks has a claim to be the highest station in southern England.
Setting off for home it took some time to get away from the congestion at the exit from the bus rally site but after a drive of about 45 minutes we had a break at Stockbridge. Everyone then enjoyed a cream tea at Lillies Tearoom before completing the trip back to Wells. Our grateful thanks to Mike of the Bristol Omnibus Vehicle Collection for providing transport and to our drivers, Roger and Malcolm.