The Queensland Omnibus & Coach Society currently owns a fleet of 17 vehicles, with our oldest vehicle being 68 years old.
These vehicles have been accumulated over time through generous donations from bus operators and kindred groups across Queensland, to ensure their continued preservation in society. We then display and use these vehicles at numerous events throughout the year including displays, tours and shows on behalf of the club.
Below are details of the vehicles that are currently registered and regularly displayed at events.
AEC Regal III
Brisbane City Council
Delivered new to the Brisbane City Council’s Department of Transport on 2 April 1948, this historically significant vehicle entered service at a time when the council acquired 20 private bus operators each operating services into Brisbane City. Between 1947 and 1948, the Council began consolidating bus transportation in Brisbane under municipal ownership - ultimately becoming the largest operator in Queensland
which remains the case today. The rationale behind this municipal takeover was the improvement of services by operating modern, diesel-powered buses as well as the coordination of city-bound services. This vehicle was one of 12 built by Commonwealth Engineering in Sydney on British A.E.C. (Associated Equipment Company) Regal III chassis.
Route number destination boxes were swiftly retrofitted to the front and rear, as the Council introduced route
numbering for the first time from 31 October 1949. Bus 80 remained in service for almost 30 years until it was withdrawn from service in 1976, and donated to the Brisbane Tramway Museum at Ferny Grove for preservation. The bus then passed onto the club during 2000 for continued preservation.
In 2014, our club received a significant funding grant through the Queensland Government’s Jupiters Community Benefit Fund to undertake vital refurbishment repairs to the vehicle. Through the strong support received from valued club sponsor, Coachworks, Bus 80 was refurbished and repainted between July and October 2014.
Leyland Panther PSUR1-1
Brisbane City Council
This vehicle was one of 340 Leyland Panther route buses ordered by the Brisbane City Council between 1968 and 1970 as tram replacements. It was the largest order of Panthers anywhere in the world. The order was split between Brisbane body builders Athol Hedges and Denning, with this vehicle one of 205 bodied by Athol Hedges at Northgate. It was delivered new to the Toowong bus depot in November 1968, which had only been open for a year at the time. It operated for the Council on urban and school runs for two decades before temporary withdrawal from service.
What separates it from all the others of its kind is that the vehicle was fitted with a regenerative braking,
storage and propulsion system under trial by the University of Queensland in 1987. This involved the installation of pressurised accumulation tanks, which used hydraulics and nitrogen gas to convert braking power into driving power. At the same time it underwent refurbishment and was fitted with power assisted steering and high-back fabric seats.
In what would ultimately pave the way for hybrid buses, Bus 498 - nicknamed ‘Reg’ - was the only vehicle in the world at the time to successfully return to passenger service after the experimental system was implemented. It lasted until October 1989 when it was saved from sale and donated to the Brisbane Tramway Museum for preservation, given its significance as a one-of-a-kind vehicle. The vehicle then passed onto the club during 2000 for its ongoing preservation.
Leyland Panther PSUR1-1
Doyle's Bus Lines
This bus is another one of 340 Leyland Panther route buses the Brisbane City Council ordered between 1968 and 1970 as tram replacements. This vehicle was the last Panther of the Denning batch of 135, and in fact the very last of the 340 Panthers bodied by local body builders Athol Hedges and Denning. It was delivered in May 1970 and operated route services for the Council for over two decades. It was refurbished in 1985 to become a 'Manther', which included a new front header and grill design, along with installation of 'Jet Air' ventilation system.
Following its withdrawal from the Brisbane City Council in July 1993, it was sold to Kev and Beryl Doyle of Doyle's Bus Lines of Springfield (near Ipswich), who had previously operated the vehicle under lease for a few years. The Doyles used it on their route and school services for another five years until they donated it to our club on Sunday 16 August 1998, shortly before they sold their business to the Pulitano Group (Bus Queensland). This was the club's first bus obtained for preservation.
Brisbane City Council
This vehicle is the last of a batch of 98 Volvo B59s that were purchased by the Brisbane City Council between 1976 and 1978. This order was a major milestone for Volvo in Australia at the time as it was the first time they had cracked the government operator market in Australia. It is further significant for the evolution of the Brisbane City Council as it marked the end of an era for the British AEC and Leyland vehicles that had dominated the Council fleet for 30 years. This was the first time the Council had purchased non-British chassis.
The bodying of these vehicles was undertaken by Domino Hedges at Northgate, on the north side of Brisbane. Bus 827 also holds extra significance in being the first bus delivered to the newly opened Toowong Workshops on 12 July 1978. It operated out of the Toowong depot for a number of years before being transferred to Carina - where it served the eastern suburbs until June 2002 when it was retired. It was then graciously donated to the club for preservation by Brisbane City Council in July 2002.
In April 2015, our club received a partial funding grant through the Queensland Government's Community Benefit Fund for the restoration of this vehicle. The bus underwent major refurbishment at Coachworks between September and November 2015 following significant financial and in-kind support from Coachworks, Patico Automotive, QBIC, Alpha Glass and PPG Industries.
Pressed Metal Corporation (SA)
This bus is one of 307 Volvo B59s with PMCSA bodies which was built new to South Australia's State Transport Authority between 1977 and 1979, for use as urban route buses. Once disposed of by the South Australian Government, many of these units continued operational service in Queensland through used bus dealer, Geoff Philp of Bus Stop Sales. Bus 1160 was one such bus which obtained special permission from Queensland Transport to operate in the state unaltered - despite being built to Adelaide's then standard of 2.6 metres wide. The bus was sold by Bus Stop Sales to Stagecoach Australia of the Sunshine Coast during 2000, who passed it onto their successor Buslink Queensland during 2002 for use on school bus services. After serving over 25 years in revenue service, the bus was donated to the club by Buslink's Fleet Manager Shane Clements during July 2005.
Part of this vehicle's significance in that it is registered in Queensland despite being 100mm wider than the maximum allowable width for heavy vehicles.
During March and October 2015, this bus featured in the Brisbane Comedy Festival at the Brisbane Powerhouse as part of Act/React's satirical adaptation of the 1994 movie 'Speed' entitled 'Speed the Movie, the Play'.
The ubiquitous Bedford faithfully served Australian bus operators for over half a century. This vehicle is one such example which spent its entire working life operating school services in regional New South Wales and Queensland. The Bedford was built new in August 1978 for Ken Farmer of Bonalbo, south of Woodenbong (near the Queensland border), in the Northern Rivers of New South Wales. The bus was purchased to run a daily school service to Culmaran Creek (south of Bonalbo). In 1989, the bus and run were sold to Russell & Myrna Clark, who, as of 2017, remain the the current operators of the service.
During late 1994, the Clarks replaced the Bedford with a brand new Mercedes Benz school bus. The Bedford was then sold by Queensland vehicle dealer Geoff Philp to continue its life as a country school bus in the town of Kingaroy, in the South Burnett region. The bus was sold to Bruce and Marilyn Dray for use on the Hillview school run (to the north of Kingaroy). The vehicle and run then passed to Steve and Cathy Davis in 2002. The Bedford continued to ply the Hillview school run until June 2006, when it was retired from service and sold to QOCS member Fred Clark for preservation.
The Bedford was Fred’s pride and joy and was regularly displayed and operated at club rallies and other community events in South East Queensland each year. Fred untimely passed away in August 2016, with the vehicle then passing to our club in July 2017 for continued preservation.
Leyland Worldmaster CRT2-1
Kangaroo Bus Lines
This bus originally carried a Freighter Lawton body and entered service with the Municipal Transport Trust of South Australia as metropolitan route bus (965) during 1958. It was later stripped down to chassis-form only by the Hills of Wollongong, New South Wales and sold to Stan and Shirley Webster, who had just relocated from Victoria to takeover the operation of Kangaroo Line in October 1978. The Webster's sent the chassis to Domino Industries (formerly Domino Hedges) at Northgate for bodying during 1979, with a body affixed by December that year. The vehicle returned to revenue service with some new features including power assisted steering, and a two-speed differential.
As the Webster's first new vehicle at Kangaroo Line (now known as Kangaroo Bus Lines), it operated regular passenger and school services (due to its large 55 seated capacity) on the north side of Brisbane throughout Caboolture, Deception Bay, Narangba and Redcliffe from January 1980 to December 2004, until it was donated to our club for preservation.
Pressed Metal Corporation
This vehicle is one of a minority of vehicles which spent its entire operational life in the same area - this being the Sunshine Coast of Queensland. Originally built new to Palmwoods Bus Service in the Sunshine Coast Hinterland, it later passed to Stagecoach Australia and finally to Buslink Queensland who donated it to the club after it served all 30 years of operation as a school bus during August 2011.
Pressed Metal Corporation
Proston Country Bus Service
This vehicle was originally built as a demonstrator in May 1981, until acquisition in January 1983 by St Gregory's College of Campbelltown, New South Wales for use as a school bus. While the chassis was constructed in Acacia Ridge by Denning, the body was constructed by Sydney's Pressed Metal Corporation. The bus served with St Gregory's College for over a decade until it was traded to Austral Denning in 1992. It was quickly on-sold to the Proston Country Bus Service in the South Burnett region of Queensland. Proston Country Bus Service owners Col and Noela Ardrey operated the vehicle as a school and charter bus until 2011, when it was replaced on its run by a new Daewoo. The vehicle was then held on to by the Ardreys until January 2013 when they graciously donated it to the club.
Stewart & Sons
Coast & Country Buses
As what would ultimately be their fourth-last vehicle bodied, the Stewart & Sons of Bundaberg produced this school bus for Mundubbera operators George and Barbara Linsket during November 1983. From here it went onto Glasshouse Country Coaches from 8 July 1987, who in-turn sold it to Eric and Marion Wills of Avondale (north of Bundaberg) on 18 July 1989. It had ironically and somewhat fittingly relocated to 30 kilometres north of where it had started its life as a bus in the Stewart & Sons depot.
For the next 24 years the vehicle, affectionately known as the 'Ugly Duckling', operated school services throughout the North Bundaberg area until its withdrawal from Coast & Country Buses on 5 April 2013. It was then destined to become a motorhome until it was graciously donated by Coast & Country Buses Managing Director, Marty Kuhlewein on 9 July 2013.
Fuji Heavy Industries
This vehicle was one of 79 almost-new Japanese bodied Volvo B10MA articulated buses that arrived in Australia between 1985 and 1986. These vehicles, bodied by Fuji Heavy Industries in December 1984, were part of a batch of 100 which operated railway shuttle services for the 1985 World Expo held in Tsukuba, Japan. What made these vehicles rare at the time was that articulated buses were not approved for use in Japan, due to fears of traffic congestion. After the Expo concluded in September 1985, the majority of the buses (which only had about 35,000km on the clock) were shipped to Australia - with the Brisbane City Council purchasing 22 of them - the largest of any Australian operator.
Upon arrival at the Council, this vehicle underwent modification which involved removal of its centre door, installation of two-piece windscreens, and increased seating capacity from 53 to 62 passengers. It originally entered service in March 1986 as (394) for use on CityLimited service 172 between Enoggera and Chermside, before being converted to CityXpress format in October 1987 with an increased capacity of 75 and new fleet number (984). It faithfully served the Council for another eight years until it was sold to Townsville operator Campbell's Coaches in September 1995. This vehicle was used as a school and charter bus in Townsville for almost 20 years, until it was replaced by a new articulated bus in 2014. It was retained by Campbells Coaches as a spare vehicle until its generous donation to the club on 15 November 2016.
Queensland Bus Builders
Brisbane City Council
This vehicle is one of only two Volvo B10M 'mk2' chassis fitted with bodies constructed by short-lived company Queensland Bus Builders (QBB) - who took over production of a contract with the Council from Commonwealth Engineering. The remaining vehicles bodied by QBB were on improved Volvo B10M 'mk3' chassis. Bus 185 was originally delivered new to the Carina bus depot in the eastern suburbs during May 1989. It spent almost two-decades as a faithful Carina vehicle until transfers in it last years of service saw it venture between depots on the north and south sides, before returning to Carina where it continued service until withdrawal in May 2010. This vehicle was part of a batch originally destined for Papua New Guinea that never eventuated. It was retained at the Council's Larapinta depot until being donated by the Council for preservation in February 2012 - due to its rarity. This vehicle is currently awaiting registration as a heritage vehicle under the SIVS scheme in 2019.
We also have a number of other buses in our fleet, which are currently awaiting major restoration and re-entry back into service. If you would like details of these vehicles, please Contact Us.