Buy an old Lothian bus for £12k

The decommissioned buses are around 12 or 13 years old
The decommissioned buses are around 12 or 13 years old
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IF you are fed up scrambling around for your fare in the morning or can’t face walking in the rain to the bus stop, then this might be the perfect solution.

For the knockdown price of just £12,000, anyone can now snap up an ageing double-decker from Lothian Buses.

Transport bosses have put 20 decommissioned vehicles on the market after replacing them with smarter, more eco-friendly substitutes.

Often sold in bulk to smaller local bus firms across the UK, anyone with deep enough pockets can snap up their very own 70-seater for a snip of the original £180,000 price-tag.

The outmoded fleet – around 12 or 13 years old – is currently being stored in a gated section of an industrial estate in Broxburn.

All the vehicles were decommissioned over the last two years to make way for modern alternatives – including the new diesel-electric hybrids.

A transport source said it was not uncommon for individuals to buy single-decker cast-offs to convert into caravanettes or caravans for family holidays.

He said: “You can take a single decker and convert that into a stock car transporter, that is not unknown. But you would need to have a very large family indeed to buy a double-decker.”

It is understood other private buyers of vehicles from previously decommissioned fleets have included church groups and “party bus” operators catering to stag and hen 

Pre-owned buses have also been converted into mobile strip bars in Europe and America.

The source added that ex-service buses from Edinburgh are highly prized in an often lucrative industry.

“There is a big market in second-hand buses just the same as there are with cars and lorries,” he said.

“All the major operators will sell them on after maybe ten to 12 years of frontline service to smaller firms who get a couple more years out of them on lighter duties like school runs.

“Edinburgh’s second-hand buses are well sought after because they have a reputation for maintaining and looking after them.”

A spokesperson for Lothian Buses said fleets were constantly being upgraded to comply with carbon emission guidelines and maintain quality.

He said: “We have a duty and a desire to maintain our bus fleet to meet the highest possible quality and environmental standards – and the lowest emissions in line with the council’s local air quality guidelines. Fleet replacement is an ongoing process as we strive to improve our overall emissions performance in the city.

“The vehicles at Broxburn were displaced by new vehicles. Surplus fleet is being kept in Broxburn due to development work at our Longstone Depot which has reduced our parking facilities. We always ensure we have a reserve fleet to deal with changes in our vehicle requirements or any major incidents.”