Wallace Arnold

Railways, trams, buses, etc.
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Post by BLAKEY »

trophy wrote: I seem to remember barr was the name on the small painted on owner panel on farsley omnibus. That is more than likely in what's generally referred to as "the legal lettering." Mind you, it wouldn't be Robert Barr - possibly J.M.Barr (Malcolm) or Barr and Wallace Arnold Trust. The same would have applied to Kippax and District and to Hardwicks.
There's nothing like keeping the past alive - it makes us relieved to reflect that any bad times have gone, and happy to relive all the joyful and fascinating experiences of our own and other folks' earlier days.

Derek hurst
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Re: Wallace Arnold

Post by Derek hurst »

I worked in the workshop at Wallace Arnold leeds from 1956 until 1973 I would like to get in touch with any of the workshop staff of that period.

valetta varsity
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Re: Wallace Arnold

Post by valetta varsity »

There was a company called Heaps Tours who i think were amalgamated with Wallace Arnold, i can remember seeing the old bedford half cabbers with Heaps Arnold Heaps logo on their flanks,every school trip i went on used Wallace Arnold Coaches,when they closed down it was the end of an era,i lived on Gelderd Road in the sixties/seventies and well remember seeing their buses passing ,weekends were always busy obviously

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Re: Wallace Arnold

Post by tilly »

Hi Derek Welcome to the site i hope you get a response there are some very keen bus men on site so you never know,All the best. :D
No matter were i end my days im an Hunslet lad with Hunslet ways.

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Re: Wallace Arnold

Post by Wiljoy »

If my memory serves me correctly Wallace Arnolds bus depot was on Chadwick Street opposite Alf Cookes on Hunslet road.
Australians all let us rejoice fr we are 1-2-3 :D

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Re: Wallace Arnold

Post by loiner99 »

I worked in a Travel Agency since the early 60s and can remember when WA opened their reservations for the following season we ( and most other agencies) had queuse around the block. It was like a half price xmas sale rush. All day we were glued to the phone trying to get thro to their reservations people and when we did we just would not let them go. It was bedlam. They were so popular that we insisted on clients having a 2nd, 3rd, 4th...... choices as most likely the first choice was full especially if the client wanted first 2 weeks in August (Leeds factory holiday weeks when just about every factory shut down).
I later had a job in their reservations in the calls (very early 70s, before computers) all holidays had cards in rows and rows of slots one set for the flight/coach and one for the hotel. Anyway one summers day someone had a pile on a desk to do some work on when someone else decided to let some air in on a hot day. Well it was hot but also at the very wrong moment breezy and the whole lot blew all over the floor.
Lord knows how long it took them to retrieve the cards and sort out the info on them. Now I suppose equivalent to pressing the delete button on a reservation computer!

Jeff Steeden
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Re: Wallace Arnold

Post by Jeff Steeden »

I started my career at Wallace Arnold Sales and Service Ltd (Wass) in1970 after being interviewed by the Group Training Officer Len Wood. I worked in the Cost Office as a warranty claims clerk..the office manager was called Laurie Killeen. The other staff were... Margaret Johnson, Sandra Depledge, Christine ??? (typist), Ron ???, old Percy the cashier who used to fall asleep after lunch, and a man who worked in a corner keeping the cardex service/maintenance records up to date. My initial mentor was Andrew Barr Jeffries who was a relative of the Barr family.
The General Manager was Ted Catt, the Service Manager was Reg Stead. The commercial vehicle manager was Peter Gautry, the foreman was Colin Senior. The Senior Car Reception engineer was Terry Roberts. The Accountant was Fred Johnson. There was an associated body work company called Wilkes and Meade, to the rear of the Wass workshop.

After a brief period there I went on to train as an accountant after being interviewed by Mr Ron Crowther the Group Chief Accountant. He placed me in the accounts office of Wallace Arnold Tours circa 1971. Staff were Mike Bullus manager, Vic Hodgson, John Squires another trainee accountant (who eventually ended up as Motor division Group financial Controller), Pete Tong, Michael Raby, and ladies whose names I can't remember.

A brief move to Trust Motors Gelderd Road with John Squires to investigate some anomalies.

Mr Crowther then moved me to accounts dept of Wallace Arnold Travel.. a small group of travel agencies. Staff were Barry Jackson, manager who was studying to be a Chartered Secretary, a girl called Paula who I was mad about, went out with but I completely messed it up regrettably, Christine on the accounting machine. The office was one room in the premises of another subsidiary of BWAT called Data Sciences International. Computer and IT company.
One assignment was in Edinburgh at Sibbald Travel to investigate a currency fraud by the accountant.
Another at Highfield Travel in Leicester to sort out the sales ledger.

I was then moved by Mr Crowther to Leeds Autocars another Vauxhall/Opel dealership. The accountant was Tony Crowther, the Office Manager was Martin Platt. Tony Crowther's wife was secretary to Mr William Berry (Bill Berry....soft fruit !) the BWAT Company Secretary.
Final move to Internal Audit back in The Calls head office... James Fearnley in the same office as David Rhodes the Wallace Arnold Tours cost controller.

Made visits to The Derby Restaurant/Exit 22 Discotheque off the M62 ..(frequented by some Leeds United players !) to help with clerical work.
I often met Mrs Hook, Mr Malcolm and Mr Stewart Barr in everyday chores. Mrs Hook had an NSU RO80, the very first rotary engine car.. in Bronze !

At the time I left, the BWAT consisted of 36 subsidiary companies. They really cared about their employees..its a damn shame what has happened to it.
In 1974 I decided to move on to an engineering company to gain production, costing and cost accounting experience and went to Renold gear and chain manufacturers.
I have extensive memories over and above these if any one wants to ask any questions.
Last edited by Jeff Steeden on Thu 03 Sep, 2020 1:45 am, edited 4 times in total.

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Re: Wallace Arnold

Post by buffaloskinner »

Nice first post Jeff
Is this the end of the story ...or the beginning of a legend?

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Re: Wallace Arnold

Post by blackprince »

Like many people who lived in Leeds in the last half of the 20th C I have fond memories of WA coach trips to the coast. So sad to hear that the travel group which includes WA went into administration in May.
It used to be said that the statue of the Black Prince had been placed in City Square , near the station, pointing South to tell all the southerners who've just got off the train to b****r off back down south!

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Re: Wallace Arnold

Post by jma »

This is more of a reminiscence from long ago than the sort of history sought by the OP more recently, but still long ago (2008)

The premises on Gelderd Road included a large garage where the WA coaches were serviced. In the late 1960's when Noddy bikes were still in use, it was quite a popular place to go and hide to keep warm, especially as there was a hot-drinks vending machine. There used to be one chap who worked permanent nights doing the jobs that were needed for the following morning and I presume there was a much bigger workforce during the day.

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