London’s other red fleet remembered

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Sixty years ago, 200 bright red vehicles caused massive controversy when launched on the streets of London. They weren’t buses, but Renault Dauphine minicabs, in what was claimed to be the biggest venture in public transport for 50 years.

Though the venture is largely forgotten today it earned massive publicity worldwide at the time, featuring on cinema and TV news. Thankfully Stephen Dine, proprietor of Empress Coaches in Hastings and transport author has published a book on the scheme, and the man behind it debonair entrepreneur Michael Gotla. “I spent 12 years researching the book, finding information and taking to people who were there, as well as gathering archive material. It is an absolutely fascinating story,” said Stephen.

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