Olympic update

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The Leyland Olympic being removed from the gutted building. ALEX YOUNG

In a move supporters hope will be the first steps on a long road to restoration, Leyland Olympic JAA 708 has been removed from the site where it was severely damaged by fire. New in 1950, the bus was the first underfloor engined single-decker in Hampshire when it entered service with legendary independent King Alfred Motor Services. The bus was withdrawn in 1965 and exported to the Irish Republic, later being saved and returned to the UK where it underwent a 10-year restoration by the Friends of King Alfred Buses (FoKAB), which aims to keep the operator’s name alive.

The vehicle was one of eight preserved buses caught in the blaze on a Hampshire industrial estate in the early hours of 8 December last year. The others were gutted beyond hope, but now the Olympic has been transported to FoKAB’s workshops for full inspection and a decision on its future.


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