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Press Coverage

Here you will find any news reports or magazine articles on the charity

Notts TV

Vintage restored buses to make a come back in Notts

by Laura Clarke – Sep 11, 2015

A new vehicle heritage centre will be opening in Hucknall this weekend transforming the 1936 period bus garage into a bus museum. The garage will open to the public for the first time this weekend when around 15 buses will be put on display. 

The former 1936 bus garage is hoping to be turned into a working bus museum as a community based project run by a group of local volunteers. The group formed in 1999 and in 2010 was awarded its charity status.

Simon Lowings, a trustee at the Nottingham Heritage Vehicle Charity believes that the centre is giving something back to the local community. 

He said: “This weekend is all about raising awareness for the Heritage Centre and trying to get more people to come and volunteer.” Mr Lowings is excited for the opening event and for the people of Nottingham to get a taste of history. He said: ” We’re a charity and we have had preserved buses for over twenty years as a collective amongst ourselves.”

These buses have never really been accessible to the public and it’s amazing to hear so many stories of how people used to use the buses. It’s all about the social history of the area, not just the buses. Without public transport there’s a lot of interaction that doesn’t happen.”

The buses are being brought to the Heritage Centre from across the country with Nottingham City Transport donating the ‘Bendy Bus’.

David Nightingale, one of the volunteers at the Heritage Centre, believes it’s a place where people can come and see a wide range of buses and bring back many memories.

He said: “The bendy bus is a great example of the history we have on offer here. It’s great for people of all ages. Personally, I’ve always had a habit of liking buses – I think they are great!”

The so called ‘Bendy Buses’ were introduced in the 2000s on high capacity routes throughout the city. Now, the last working example in Nottinghamshire is being kept at the Heritage Centre for the public to come and see. 

Nottingham Heritage Vehicles Charity are also hoping to gain Heritage Lottery funding to help restore the garage to turn it into a working museum. The old garage built in the 1930’s needs repairs to the roof which could cost up to £20,000. 

Mr Lowings said: “We envisage that we will achieve this over the next three to four years with a lot of hard graft and with the help of trustees.”

The open day event will take place this weekend (12th and 13th of September) from 10am till 4pm. It will be held at the Old Bus Depot, Portland Road, Hucknall and it is a free event.

To watch a full report on the buses tune into Notts TV News at 5.30pm.

Hucknall Dispatch

New Bus Museum

by Tim Cunningham – Friday, September 18, 2015

A new bus museum welcomed more then 600 visitors when it opened its doors for the first time in Hucknall. 

The project, run entirely by Volunteers of Nottingham Heritage Vehicles Charity, has leased the former disused Trent Motor Traction bus garage on Portland Road, with the aim of turning it into a leading transport museum. The free open days allowed visitors to learn about the charity’s future plans, which include bus trips in vintage vehicles to Papplewick and Linby. Simon Lowings, a charity trustee, said: “We hope to attract as many members of the coach community as possible to come along and join in.”

“It’s not all about restoring old vehicles, it is hoped to use an area of the premises to explain the development of transport locally and its role in everyday life, to tell the story of those working in the industry locally and to provide a centre where locals can learn new skills in an enjoyable environment – or simply pop in for a cup of tea and a chat.”

It is early days, with the premises requiring major upgrading before accredited museum status is obtained and regular open days can develop.” “As fundraising develops the charity intends developing part of the premises into a tea room for open days, alongside creating meeting rooms that may be available for local groups to use.”

“The progress of the project is very much influenced by the extent to which the community gets behind it, so as such provides a great opportunity to put something back into Hucknall.”

Over the weekend, Simon and fellow trustees enrolled more than 35 new members. Neighbouring firms Terratruck and Ezy Fit Tyres offered free car parking over the weekend and Central Waste provided a skip for rubbish. Dating from 1936, the premises operated as a bus garage until January 2011, becoming a storage facility for surplus vehicles from that point. 

With Art Deco features, unusual styles of brickwork and unspoilt period internal fittings, the charity says the interior really “is like stepping back in time”. Simon, of Valley View, Mansfield, said: “We want to restore the premises to their former glory, alongside the vehicles. “We’re appealing to local tradespeople to offer a little of their time and expertise in moving the project forward. 

If the community gets behind the project then Hucknall will have something to be proud of. “We want to thank everyone who attended last weekend and look forward to meeting more of you next time.” Founded in 1999, the group became a charity in 2010, gaining charity status in 2014. The collection ranges from 1950s rear platform double deckers up to a relatively modern Nottingham Bendy Bus. For details, email – another open door event is planned around the end of October. 

Hucknall Nub News

Hucknall’s very own transport museum run by Nottingham Heritage Vehicle Charity to host free entry open days this weekend

by Tom Surgery – 15th Sep, 2021

A transport museum based in Hucknall will open its doors to customers this weekend for the first time since the Coronavirus pandemic struck. 

Nottingham Heritage Vehicles Charity, based in the former Trentbarton depot on Portland Road, will be open 10am-4pm this weekend (Saturday 18 September and Sunday 19 September).

The depot which has stood since 1936, is one of only a few surviving Art Deco bus garages in the country.

The charity agreed a 21-year lease in the depot in 2015 and since last year they have carried extensive renovation work out on the outbuildings which had been derelict. This has seen the crumbling block transformed into offices and function rooms, giving the organisation far more space. 

Entry to each open day is free but there will be an opportunity to make a monetary donation to the charity. 

Speaking exclusively to Hucknall Nub New, Simon Lowings, CEO of Nottingham Heritage Vehicles Charity said: “we’re hoping for an awful lot of visitors this weekend. A lot more engagement, hopefully a lot more volunteers coming onboard, we’d like to think we’ve got something to offer everybody: we have all age groups involved now.

I’m hoping that people will come out and visit us and realise that there is something quite special here to look at, hopefully some will want to be involved. We should be able to get four of five different vehicles out on Saturday and Sunday. There will be free bus rides on those, no charge for bus rides at all obviously but donations are encouraged.”

“We’re trying to get as many displays done as we can in the building. There’s a cracking model railway layout to look at inside the shed. We’re also putting on good displays in the shed, there’s a catering facility, we’ve got a new bus bookshop and a railway bookshop that’s opening and a new Diecast model shop and cafeteria area. If we get the opportunity, there’ll be a photo gallery. It’s certainly, in our opinion, one of the better transport museums in the Midlands.”

Mr Lowings founded Nottingham Heritage Vehicles Charity along with his father in 1999 with just two vehicles. The charity currently has 21 vehicles on the museum site, with a further 14 at their compound in Bestwood. They document the history of Britain’s buses, with vehicles representative of the early 1900s right through to the only surviving Nottingham Bendybus from 2002.

However, the group are looking for more volunteers as they currently only have a few people who are able to regularly help.

Mr Lowings added: “There are new skills to be learnt, a lot of the old boys pass on skills that they know as well, so everybody’s learning off everybody else but it’s a nice environment; we have a laugh.”

“It’s going really really well, the older members are really chuffed because a lot of them have retired sort of 10, 15 years ago; to put their efforts into this they’ve found it so rewarding.

“We’re open to basically everybody in the community; there’s no barrier to being involved here at all, and we don’t ever want there to be a barrier.

“We’re very much involving everybody because everybody’s got a part to play and something to offer. All we say to them is if the gate is open at the front, we’re on site so if you’re passing in the week, pop in, say hello, if you want to get involved there’ll be a paintbrush or a broom handle, or a kettle or a teacup waiting for you.”

There is a hope that the museum can link up with other areas of the community to help local people be able to get a sense of the true history of the town of Hucknall and how it has changed over the years.

“What I would like firstly from this place is not just to tell the story of the buses that we’ve got in there, or even our story as a charity but to tell the story and the social history of the local companies but then also to offer the community groups to tell the story of Hucknall. If the community wants to work with us and make this a real community project then we’re here, we’ve got the building, we’re paying the bills, the space is here.”

The charity hope to hold another open day before Christmas and will aim for around a dozen open day events at the depot next year.

Mr Lowings added: “We’ve got a pretty good following but we need to get people in Hucknall to realise we’re here.”

BBC News

Nottingham Heritage Vehicles Charity relieved by £15,000 grant

17 December 2021

A charity that works to preserved heritage vehicles has said a £15,800 government grant to support its work has come as a “huge relief”.

The Nottingham Heritage Vehicles Charity received the money from the government’s culture recovery fund. 

Chief Executive Officer, Simon Lowings said the support was “fantastic” but feared the impact of tougher coronavirus restrictions on the charity. 

The government said it had given groups around the country a helping hand. 

‘Huge Relief’

The charity’s museum, which is based in a 1936 Art Deco bus depot in Hucknall, Nottinghamshire, was awarded the money to help it pay running costs and support digital plans to raise awareness of its collection.

Its collection includes about 40 vintage buses, including examples from the early 1900s right up to the only surviving Nottingham bendy bus from 2002.

Mr Lowings said visitor numbers had been approximately 60% down since the charity had reopened in September, following the national lockdowns and restrictions.

“If the restrictions get tougher, we will simply have to close again,” he said.

“It’s a huge relief to receive the support but we aren’t sure how far it’s going to get us.

“We rely on a lot of older volunteers to look after the buses. Sadly, we haven’t seen them come back since Covid and, although we are operating safely, I can’t blame them, given the restrictions that have been in place.

“It’s absolutely fantastic to receive the money, but we need to be open as well.”

Several other attractions in the East Midlands also received support, including Tissington Hall, in Derbyshire, which received £25,000 towards staff costs.

Heritage Minister Nigel Huddleston said: “I’m delighted that this vital funding from our unprecedented culture recovery fund is giving so many brilliant heritage organisations a helping hand this winter.

“I want everyone to enjoy what our fascinating and diverse heritage has to offer and with this money, we’re safeguarding these organisations for generations to come.”

Coach & Bus Week

Museum’s Christmas appeal

Nick Larkin reports – 6th December 2022

A Nottingham museum is preparing for Christmas in style, reports Nick Larkin. 

While most transport museums wind down for Christmas, one concern is holding two major events in the week up to the big day. Nottingham Heritage Vehicles Charity is organising free event days at its museum, the former Trent depot at Hucknall in Nottinghamshire, on Sunday 18 and Friday 23 December. Attractions will include classic bus rides, vehicle displays, a site tour and shop, not forgetting home-made refreshments in a new cafe and an appearance by Santa. 

Spokesperson Simon Lowings explained: “After Covid-19 and everything we really wanted to celebrate the festive season this year. We’ve decorated the museum for Christmas and we want people to come along and have a great time. Although these are festive events there’s plenty to enjoy if you’ve had enough of Christmas and want to get away from it!” 

Some 35 vehicles are based at the Art Deco depot, with Nottinghamshire connections. They range from former Nottingham City Transport Wrightbus-bodied Scania ‘bendybus’ FE02AKV, new to the municipal company, and several examples of that operator’s iconic Leyland Atlanteans with bodywork to its own specification. South Notts is represented by G129NRC, a Northern Counties-bodied Leyland Olympian, and Trent vehicles include 1962 Alexander-bodied Leyland Tiger Cub, YRC191. Barton vehicles are another important part of the collection, 

Nottingham Heritage Vehicles Charity, which runs the museum, as the name suggests became a registered charity in 2010, moving into the depot in 2014, and carrying out an extensive renovation, much of it during the Covid-19 pandemic. New volunteers are always welcome, the charity says. 

Bus & Coach Preservation

Building of success

Nick Larkin reports – March 2023 issue

Bus & Coach Preservation

Statfold Barns

Paul Statham reports – January 2024 issue

This Article features one of the vehicles housed at NHVC

Bus & Coach Preservation

Volvo devotion

Nick Larkin reports – January 2024 issue

Bus & Coach Preservation

PS We love you

Nick Larkin reports – January 2024 issue

Nottingham World

How to get a free ride on a heritage bus in Nottingham this Christmas

Daniel DeFalco reports – 5th December 2023

It’ll definitely get you into the Christmas spirit!

With Christmas just under three weeks away, many of us are now fully embracing the festive spirit. Whether you’re spending far too much time online hunting for presents or battling to untangle the tree lights, we all know that there’s far more ti Christmas than just December 25. 

Here in Nottingham, there are plenty of fun activities to enjoy in the run-up to the big day. The city’s popular Winter Wonderland is just one of the many festive events guaranteed to get you in the mood for Christmas. But sometimes it’s worth trying something a little bit different, especially if you’re on a tight budget. 

Christmas markets might look good on Instagram, but do they really provide good value for money? those looking for a quirky Christmas activity in Nottingham should look no further than the free festive open days hosted by Nottingham Heritage Vehicles Charity. The Hucknall-based charity is offering free heritage bus rides during the events on Sunday, December 10 and Saturday, December 16. 

Visitors can enjoy plenty of festive fun, including Santa’s magical bus, model railway layouts and a huge model bus shop. The event on December 10 will take place 10.30am and 5.30pm, while the December 16 festivities will be held between 12pm and 7pm. Both events are free to attend, although donations are encouraged. Nottingham Heritage Vehicles Charity is also running luxury coach trips to help raise funds. More information on the free festive open days can be found here. https//

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