As usual I have to say sorry for being late AGAIN. I thought being retired ment you spent time sitting with your feet up, FAT CHANCE! Cindy & I do volunteer work at Soi Dog one day a week plus Cindy does all the photography and helps with their Face Book page. We have had visitors which also slows things down. Sunday we head to Phnom Pehn, Siem Reap then Chang Mai. We are booked on a photgraphy tour in Cambodia. We were going to India but visa's were a problem, its a long story. The little Indian man in the back room surrounded by aging ledgers dating back to the 1930's is very slow. So slow it take upto 6 weeks to get a visa. So that hasn't changed, they may have the bomb and an IT industry but bureaucracy is still firmly planted in the 1930-40's. Hope you enjoy this lot. Derek & Cindy

A Landrover to Kathmandu in 1958
Hi, I happened to come across your web site looking for an old friend. I did the exploratory research on this route in October / December 1958 with my friend Michael Wood Power in a second hand Land Rover. He subsequently started Penn Overland Tours, and I finished up in Australia. I was born in 1940, so only eighteen at the time.

I did however keep extensive daily journals of the trip which I regularly sent back to my parents so they knew that their little boy was still alive.
These diaries have been mislaid for many years but I have an idea that they are somewhere in my sisters house in Ascot.
I now live near the Pyrenees in the south of France, so accessing material back in England is not easy.
Likewise photographs, I took hundreds, most of which are now with my youngest son who lives in Devizes, I could always put you in touch with him.
The following facts may be of interest, We were the first fourwheel drive vehicle to get into Katmandu, over some ghastly bullocktrack pass between India and Nepal. We stayed in the Snow View Hotel Katmandu and a couple of entries earlier in the visitors book was Edmund Hilary.
We had bought the Land Rover in the UK for £280 second hand and because of its Rarity  ( 4x4 ) in Nepal were able to sell it for £750.
Mike had to wait a few days to get the money, I went back over the pass on a bullock cart and  eventually finished up in Calcutta where we met up again on Christmas eve. Attached a photo of me and Sherpa Tensing Norgay
Best regards Bruce

Left Sherpa Tensing Norgay 1940

Right Bruce with Tensing Norgay

These images are a real treasure, I have asked Bruce for more of his collection. I will keep you posted...

Slide Shows
I have done some work on the slide shows and tried to get them all in one place. There are 16 currently, send me more pics and I'll put them up. Check out the new Slide Page. There is a new Budget Bus show at

Flying Chapati's
This one you have to see.... who say's Indians can't play cricket, this guy has a great aim.

Watch This.... Flying Chapati's


Ever hear from any "Suntrekkers" ?  I drove for them for a few years, cheers

Mike MacDonald

Mail Bag

"Silver Service?"


I don't know why but I decided to search Google for " Sundowners Drivers and Couriers" found your great website . I drove for Sundowners from 1775- 1979 overland and Europe , nickname ( we all had one) "Silver". Feel free to add my details to your site .  
Over the next couple of weeks I will search the old shoe boxes and see what I can find , scan and send to you .

Regards, Greg Read

Bob Blenkin

Hi Derek, seen some photos on a facebook plugins, from your page.
I scrolled down them, and came across a shot, that included myself. It was taken from the Sept 72 trip somewhere in Yugaslavia.
The drivers on that trip were Barry and John. Some of the passengers on that trip included
Joachim Strave, from Germany ------- Robin Fryer, Australian
Rob Sinclair, Newzealander ------ Lee Fox, Australian
Peter Anglin,Australian ---------- Les Linsell Australian
Fay and Bob Ashford Australian ----- Glen Ralph, Canadian
Dell Smith, Rhodesia, as was ------- Kerry Neale, Australian
Charlie Coaker, British ---------- Helen Jackson, Australian
John Egan, Australian ------------- Kevin Wheeler, Australian
Rock and Joan O keefe, Australian -- Kev and Bev Coppleman, Australian
Bill Brierly, Australian -------------- Mac and Buckingham, Australian
Christine Murdock, Australian What a great crew.
Regards, Bob Blenkin.

Can anyone's grey matter help?

Hi Derek I have two confessions – one, I am a bus numbers anorak and two, I never did an overland trip… In the early 1970s I was working for one of the larger London coach companies and an avid bus spotter. A rather structured world of private hires to the coast etc so the seemingly subversive overland operations rather took my interest. Sadly I didn’t have the nerve or time to go myself but I took a keen interest in who was running and what vehicles they had. I thought the 14 vehicles I knew of with Budget Bus was a reasonable record of their ‘fleet’ until I saw some of the pictures on your site. Clearly I missed a lot more but unclearly most of the images don’t show readable reg numbers. However I was surprised to see that one of the Brydens was able to answer one travellers ‘what ever happened to 102 HPH’ question and that made me wonder if Emil still had any details of his charges or else is one of those rare people who can recall every vehicle they have owned. As he has produced passenger lists from way back, I wonder if you he can also list out the vehicles he had, from when to when and their fates? I would be very interested to know that sort of trivia if he can. Are you able to enquire please?

Regards, Martin

Adrian Coupe

Hi Derek,
I went out in October 1973 with my finace at the time, Iris Elliott. You dropped into the store I managed in Bondi Juction (Cost Less Imports) in 1975 I think, and told me you were heading the other way to London. Am living in Halifax area, Nova Scotia, Canada. It was a great trip, lots of memories. Had the greatest time. Adrian Coupe

Just found your website – no idea how I ended up there!!! I was on an Exodus overland from Kathmandu – London departing April 82. Driver was Bob ??? who was a wiry sardonic bloke and co-driver Colin maybe Hood???? who was a trainee. We had to fly Karachi to Amman where we were picked up by a Hann bus – driver Clive - until we were met by an Exodus truck in Jordan or Syria I think. An experience that I will never get to do again given the current political climate in many of the countries we went to.
Have been browsing your website and feeling very nostalgic after all these years.
Andrew Maunders

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