1919—the start of the service
1919 was at the start of a considerable expansion
of British bus services. The First World War saw
personnel ready-trained to drive and a surplus of
post-war vehicles available for re-bodying as
buses. This coincided with changes to the
economy and a general increase in the need for
In 1908, prior to Crosville, the London & North
Western Railway had begun motor bus operations
from Mold, including to Loggerheads, extending to Llanferres in the following year.
Crosville had yet to reach Ruthin.
The War Office commandeered buses for the First World War, with most non-essential bus services
suspended. The Llanferres extension ceased in 1914 and the service to Loggerheads a year later.
Crosville Motor Services and Ruthin’s politicians nevertheless had their sights on a Ruthin to Mold
service but for the intervention of the war. In 1918, Ruthin’s mayor was “strongly of the opinion that
motor traction had come to stay”.
There were great celebrations when in July
1919—probably the 10th—the new Crosville bus
The first timetable for Ruthin - Mold from July 1919
shows two return journeys on Mondays to Fridays,
from Ruthin Castle Hotel at 1035 and 1600 (soon to
become 1715), with an additional one on Saturdays
at 2030 and Ruthin fair days (the first Tuesday of
each month). Crosville added an additional journey
from May 1921.
Reflecting the early vehicle technology available & no
doubt the condition of the roads, the end-to-end
minutes, although that from Mold to Ruthin took an extra
In 1919, the single bus fare from Ruthin to Mold was 2/2d (2
shilling and 2 old pence, which is about 11 new pence). By
1929, the return fare had actually reduced to 1/6d (or 8p).
The Ruthin to Mold service started even before the 1921
service from Mold to Chester. The Ruthin terminus was
outside the Castle Hotel, St Peter’s Square. Crosville used the Victoria Hotel in
Mold at 25 Chester Street (currently a dentist), where by 1919 Crosville had
opened a branch and office. It had the telephone number Mold 23.
We have found no pictures of the actual
bus used for the first service.
Correspondence suggests that the
first buses were obtained from
coach builders who had
constructed and fitted brand new
bodies on chassis of older buses used before the First
World War. It is highly likely, therefore, that the chassis
was a Daimler and the body was either by Eaton or
London Improved. The image right of a similar vehicle is
from the Crosville Motor Services collection.
Following the start of the service, it was in October 1919
that Crosville notified Flintshire County Council that it
wanted to cancel for the winter months one of the journeys to Loggerheads, with a slight change to
another journey. Crosville confirmed that the majority of the Loggerheads (and Ruthin) journeys
would nevertheless run throughout the winter period.
An early L & N W R bus at Mold railway station
© 1919-2019 Denbighshire County Council