I have often wondered whether other people have the same deep, almost fanatical interest in public transport as those in the UK. For me it all began during WWII when books were published showing drawings and photographs of war planes so you could look up into the sky and without even bothering about colours or markings, you could immediately identify whether the plane above was ‘one of ours’ or ‘one of theirs’. Then shortly after the war, I came across Ian Allen’s fascinating publications about trains, giving details of all the classes of locomotive currently running in the various regions of the newly nationalised British Railways and their respective identity numbers Train-spotting soon became the natural hobby of tens of thousands of schoolboys who spent hours on windswept station platforms duly ticking off the numbers of passing locomotives in their books. At school we even had a train-spotters’ club and travelled hundreds of miles around the country visiting grimy, steam-laden engine sheds in our never-ending quest for the magic numbers. I don’t think it was very much later when the said Mr. Allen started publishing lists of London Transport buses, trams and trolleybuses and the rush was on once more, visiting bus stations and busy terminals for the same purpose. He provided a similar service for some of the other major operators in those days like Midland Red and Southdown, to name but two. Judging by the proliferation of websites about buses in general, and London buses in particular, I gather that some of the same interest continues. Whether or not schoolboys still hunt down fleet numbers, I am not sure. I rather imagine that these days, such a habit would be rather less exciting, since the drive of most trains nowadays is part of a set of coaches and cannot compare with the glory of the massive, roaring steam engines thundering down the tracks. Similarly, London buses have somewhat lost their identity with a multitude of private operators constantly changing their fleets, as concessions pass from hand to hand, making it virtually impossible to keep track of any fleet numbers.. .