Chassis: Dennis Dominator
Chassis Number: DD101/102
Body: East Lancs
Body Number: 7401
Seating Capacity: H43/33F
New: October 1977
UFP 233S is a Dennis Dominator with East Lancs bodywork. The bus was new to Leicester City Transport as fleet number 233 in 1977 as the first production model Dominator, making LCT the first customer of this chassis type. Licensed to carry 76 passengers, and with a powerful Gardner 6XLB engine coupled to a Voith three speed gearbox, 233 entered service wearing the same livery it can be seen in today.
The Preservation Process
Many issues were encountered during the trying task of preserving 233 to its former glory. The seat moquette is not made anymore, but fortunately the supplier ‘Camira Fabrics’ had one roll left and some were also obtained from a seat trimmers in Northamptonshire and ‘North Yorkshire’. The maroon vinyl is called ‘Cairo Red’ and sadly this is also no longer in production, however enough was tracked down to provide the strips for the seats.
With regards to the bodywork, all of the panels and roof were rubbed down and repaired, primed and undercoated to provide a solid base for the top coat of gloss paint. The paint was supplied by Williamsons of Ripon (the original paint supplier to Leicester City Transport from the 1970s). The cream is called Leicester City pale cream and the maroon is Imperial Crimson.
The ‘Pay As You Enter’ illuminated sign had to be replaced as the original was rusted through and the emergency door control flap was recreated from original photos, as the bus lost this during its service life when it was replaced by a single button operated switch.
The windscreen wiper air operated motors had to be replaced as well as the front lights and indicators, all sourced as new from platforms including eBay, or second hand off scrap vehicles which carried the same equipment.
The interior was stripped out and all of the seat frames and flooring received attention and a repaint.
Back On The Road
After a long time in storage with work being carried out by the LTHT restoration team, Dennis Dominator UFP 233S passed its voluntary MOT on Saturday 24th July 2021. 233 is the oldest surviving Dennis Dominator, and so deserves to be recognised at Trust events after playing such an important part in not only Leicester’s past, but also the history of the Dennis Dominator bus chassis. We hope that the vehicle will continue to grace Leicestershire’s roads for many years into the future.
233 has been named ‘Dennis’ and features on the Trust’s social media accounts as the lead character in @dennis.n.friends. You can learn more about Dennis and his friends by clicking here.
Interested in Dennis’ journey? Follow him on Instagram and Facebook by clicking on the icons above!