728 GAU 728L
New To: Nottingham City Transport
Chassis: Leyland National 1051/2R/0101 00812
Body: Integral B44D
Delivered in 1973 to Nottingham City Transport as part of a batch of 8 similar vehicles, 728 was supplied with a 44 seat dual door layout. It was ordered to operate on the Central Area Service, route 77, which ran a circular route around the centre of Nottingham. Route 77 linked Victoria Centre and the former Broadmarsh Shopping Centre as well as Mount Street Bus Station and The General Hospital (which both have since gone) via the Market Square.
Route 77 was identified by a yellow roof and front panel with route 88 having an orange roof and front panel. After a few years in service the coloured roofs were abandoned and buses on both routes had the roofs painted out which meant they could work on either route. In 1978, 728 was repainted into an overall advert for Grays Television of Bulwell.
728 was later withdrawn from service and was given a new purpose in life as a mobile sales unit situated on the Market Square for the then new Easyrider card. It was stored at Trent Bridge by 1986, by which time NCT had acquired shop premises in the Market Square. It remained there until sold to West Midlands PTE in June 1988, where it performed promotional roles for the proposed Midland Metro Tramway.
It finished up with West Midlands PTE as a glorified timetable rack in bright yellow with Centro on the side. Centro was the operating arm of West Midlands PTE. In August 2002 the bus was acquired by Nottingham Heritage Vehicles and over the winter of 2002/3 the interior was modified by ourselves to use as a photo sales and display unit. Externally the bus was rebuilt and repainted into its original livery. Since then, 728 has been painted into a version of the ‘Standard’ NCT green and cream and it continues to be used to attend rallies around the country.
Relevance To The Collection
728 is the last surviving MK1 National bought by Nottingham City Transport. We also have 724 in our collection which is the last surviving MK2 National bought by Nottingham City Transport.