WNO 481 entered service in Chelmsford for Eastern National on 3rd November 1953 as a closed topper. The earliest known photo is dated 7th May 1963 and shows the bus with Pitsea Station (Essex) as the destination.

In 1965 it was converted to an open topper for seafront duties in Clacton along the coast and in and out of Butlins, Clacton in its golden heyday in the late 1960’s. Imagine beautiful sunny days when WNO 481 sailed along the Clacton coast road delighting holiday-makers as it went in and out of Butlins in its golden heyday in the Swinging 60’s.

Chassis No: 98173 Class, SW – Short (27ft) Wide (8ft) Engine: 5G (Gardner 5LW – 5 Cylinder) Body: ECW L27/28R – No. 6550 Eastern Coach Works, Lowestoft1953 Delivered with a Lowbridge Body1966 Converted to Open Topper

3rd November 1953 – WNO 481 entered service with Eastern National Omnibus Co. 7 May 1963 – Earliest photo of WNO 481 destination Pitsea Station October 1965 – Deregistered for open– top conversion. April – May 1966 – Open-top conversion performed at Chelmsford PO33/28R for service along the coast road in and around Clacton and especially to and from Butlins. Served Clacton & Colchester as a closed topper and as an open topper until 1968.

© Copyright 1972 Wings Tour Bus. Photo credits: Syd Eade, Daniel Peart, IBPTS Felixstowe, Busman Extraordinaire Paul Bateson, Richard Haughey.