1960s and 1970s—decline and councils step in
In spite of the growth in private motor cars, the early years of the 1960s were positive
enough. By the middle of the decade, however, the growing impact of the private car had
begun to bite.
As fewer passengers travelled, Crosville had to increase fares. Bus fares
on the Ruthin to Mold corridor had been
stable but jumped significantly at the
end of the 1960s to 5/3d return (26p). At
the start of the 1960s, the return fare
had been 3/3d (16p). This represented an
increase of 67 per cent in 10 years.
Fewer passengers also resulted in the
start of significant cutbacks. In September
1965, Crosville withdrew the Ruthin -
Chester through service which, till then,
had operated five days a week. In 1962,
Sundays between Ruthin and Mold had
already been halved, generally to three
return journeys. In 1971, Sundays were soon
to go to one journey only in each direction.
In 1965, the Ruthin
terminus moved from the
railway station back to
Market Street and this
reflected the withdrawal
of passenger trains from
Ruthin three years earlier.
Also in 1965, the first
through Ruthin -
Llanarmon yn Iâl - Mold
journey operated. It was
in 1970 that most Ruthin
to Mold buses began
operating via Llanarmon.
In 1968, the journey time from Ruthin to Mold reduced to 40
It was during the late 1960s that the government permitted the
use of longer saloons and these began to replace some double
decked journeys on the Ruthin to Mold service. These longer
single decks could carry up to 53 seated passengers. Crosville
was able to operate these modern single deckers without a
conductor, a process completed on such vehicles by 1974.
The number of pupils travelling nevertheless resulted in the
continued use of double decks at school times and at the time
these still required a conductor.
In 1969, Crosville transferred to the National Bus Company. National Bus Company subsidiaries had
a duty to break even year on year and Crosville was compelled to consider loss-making routes. In
1971, under threat of withdrawals, both Denbighshire and Flintshire County Councils exercised new
powers under the Transport Act 1968 to subsidise loss-making rural bus services. This included the
Ruthin to Mold suite of routes which otherwise would have disappeared altogether, other than at
school times. The annual deficit in 1971 was recorded as £1,912 (equivalent to about £24,000
Meanwhile, the return fare from Ruthin to
Mold was now 40p. Between 1962 and
1972, Crosville had put up fares by 122
per cent. The 1973 fuel crisis added yet
more misery for farepaying passengers,
as Crosville revised its fares significantly
By 1973, Crosville had combined the B37
and B38 market day services from the
villages of Eryrys and Maeshafn to Mold.
On schooldays, Crosville operated the B36
from Mold via the villages to Ysgol
In 1977, Crosville withdrew Sunday buses on the B33 (Ruthin to Mold) route but re-established
weekday through journeys between Ruthin and Chester, largely as B8. The B33 became the B7 and
school journeys via Graianrhyd the B6. There were again eight departures from Ruthin to Mold on
weekdays and nine on Saturdays, five of which went through to Chester (six on Saturdays).
Towards the end of the decade and especially during the early 1980s, double deck buses on the
Ruthin - Mold service began to be suitable for driver-only operation, thus laying off conductors.
These were largely Bristol VRTs with Eastern Coach Works bodies. By then, Bristol-manufactured
saloons had begun to be replaced by Leyland Nationals.
© 1919-2019 Denbighshire County Council
Bristol RELL6G with Eastern Coach Works 53 seat
body new in 1971 at Mold ready for the the B36,
a school variant of the B37, to Ruthin via Ysgol
A 48-seat Leyland National new in 1973, seen at Ruthin prior
to departing towards Mold and Chester