Helping the Trolleybus Museum at Sandtoft to Expand
In 2017the Society purchased the bungalow and property adjoining the Trolleybus Museum at Sandtoft. On 5 October 2018 the Trolleybus Museum announced that it had purchased another 1.5 acres of land, mainly adjoining the western boundary of the BTS land. The Society's Committee and the Museum's Board of Directors are working closely together to develop a strategic plan that meets the specific needs of the Society and the Museum and will eventually result in a much improved visitor experience. This will include a spacious Exhibition Hall where visitors will be able to view selected trolleybuses and an exhibition telling the story of the trolleybus in the UK.
Bournemouth Trolleybus Pageant 25 - 27 May 2019
This event, to be held at the Trolleybus Museum at Sandtoft, will see the Society's most recent acquisition, Bournemouth 301, (seen below on Christchurch turntable while on hire to the Reading Transport Society - as we were then known - on 29 December 1968), in service for the first time as a BTS vehicle. 301 was the last new trolleybus to enter service in the UK. It will operate alongside 297 from the same batch for the first time in many years. The Society's 1935 Sunbeam MS2 is expected to operate demonstration runs at the same event. Our Archivist and Librarian, Dave Hall, will be running film shows in the Regal Cinema including rare very early films of Bournemouth and Hastings trolleybuses.
What We Did in 2018
READING ANNIVERSARY Last year marked the 50th anniversary of the closure of our "home" system, Reading, where the Society was founded in 1961. We held an exhibition of Reading trolleybus artefacts in Reading Museum and the British Trolleybus Society and Reading Museum jointly hosted two very interesting speakers for an informal get-together as part of BLACK HISTORY MONTH called 'Come and Drive Our Buses'.
We also held a free film show in Reading Town Hall co-presented by Dave Hall and Peter Whitehead showing old cine film and digital photos of Reading's trolleybuses which was attended by 180 people. Our events were made possible by Heritage Lottery Funding.
Following the success of last year's events the Trolleybus Museum at Sandtoft has Reading-themed Trolleydays on 2 and 3 November 2019, with Reading trolleybuses in service and Dave Hall showing films in the Regal Cinema.