Pontypridd started their short relationship with Longwell Green in 1963 just as that company was ceasing to pick up orders for bus bodies. These two AEC Reliances were 89 and 90 (997/998 TTX) and coincided with the last bodies built for any other operator, although not for Pontypridd as two AEC Regent Vs were to follow in 1966.
The Pontypridd examples were well turned-out and featured a skirt-level aluminium trim which was not a feature of the contemporary Gelligaer vehicles. The bodies were of B45F layout, Longwell Green squeezing in one more seat than Roe had. They were on 2MU3RV chassis and the last vacuum-braked vehicles for Pontypridd. They had synchromesh gearboxes but all subsequent Reliances were to feature a constant-mesh gearbox - this required a more precise technique from the driver but may have proved more reliable on the short, sharp hills which were a feature of Pontypridd’s single-deck routes.
Both these vehicles lasted well. 90 was the first to go in 1979, with 89 lasting until the following year.
© David Beilby