Who operated from Quadring Fen to Spalding

Please note this is a site of historical record and does not contain current service information

Based in the village of Gosberton between Spalding and Donington in the Lincolnshire district of South Holland, their bus service shown below in the undated early 1960s timetable has a generous level of service seven days a week on their route through the lanes and fenland roads from Quadring Fen, Gosberton Clough and West Pinchbeck to the market town of Spalding, famed until recent years for its annual springtime flower parade. The level of service was greatly enhamced on the two market days Tuesday and Saturday.

The origins of the Elseys transport business were from 1946 with purchase of a nine year old Bedford WTB from Stark of Tetney. Originally Elsey worked in partnership with Leverton of Quadring. but that was dissolved in 1949 with Elsey concentrating on bus work and Leverton on coaching. Another operator (Nightingale of Pode Hole, Spalding, trading as Reliance) also ran alongside Elseys on the Quadring Fen route. Reliance was acquired in 1960 along with two of their vehicles. Elseys original livery was emerald green and cream but from 1961 was changed to red and ivory following the purchase of a coach in those colours. Fleet size in 1963 was eight vehicles, six coaches and two minibuses.

The businesses of Oliver of Swineshead (founded in 1947) and Leverton Motorways of Quadring were bought in June 1974. The owner of Leverton's had been Mr Elsey's original partner back in 1949. The Elsey fleet numbered twenty eight vehicles in 1976, the year that Aubrey Elsey died. A daily Spalding town service started in March 1976.  Further development included the takeover of the business of Campling (Holme Delight) of Donington in April 1977, the Campling bus route from Boston to Spalding via Donington having passed earlier in 1970 to Kimes of Folkingham.

Another timetable leaflet from the business of Aubrey and Winifred ("Win") Elsey of Gosberton, dating from 1980, shows timetables for the Spalding - Bourne, Spalding - Quadring Fen, Wigtoft - Spalding routes, as well as the Spalding town service. In the same year, following express service deregulation, Elseys started a daily coach service between Gosberton, Swineshead, Boston, Spalding and London.  It had previously been operated as an excursion to London from Spalding, and is known to have been running as such regularly on Thursdays and Saturdays by 1977.

In 1989 Elsey's were are also running route 59 from Spalding via Gosberton and Kirton to Boston, coupled with two Boston town services (see below).  Part of the London express journeys were incorporated into the bus service timetable. The 59 was originally a Lincolnshire Road Car route and was later operated by Brylaine Travel as service 113 Spilsby - Boston - Spalding (although for a while it was also operated as Brylaine's 5 from Lincoln to Boston and on to Spalding).  Kimes also covered the part of the route between Boston and Kirton.

The London express route continued until withdrawal at the end of summer 2007, although the Elsey business had been owned by TransLinc, then a major operator in the county, since 2001. TransLinc was subsequently acquired by May Gurney, later part of the Kier group.

1960s timetable for Elsey's daily Quadring Fen to Spalding route

pre decimalisation timetable


pre decimalisation timetable

pre decimalisation timetable

pre decimalisation timetable

Elseys routes in operation in 1977
Spalding - West Pinchbeck - Twenty - Bourne
see also Delaine Buses
Sutterton - Surfleet - Spalding
Tuesday and Friday

Spalding - West Pinchbeck - Gosberton - Quadring Fen

Spalding town services (east and west)

An Elsey's Ford Plaxton PJL390J working on the Spalding town service in 1980
A 45-seater and new to Elsey in 1971
(photo with thanks from the johnmightycat1 collection)

Elsey Ford PJL390J 1980 Spalding

Timetable for the Spalding - Boston 59 service which Elseys introduced when Lincolnshire Road Car withdrew
from the route following the closure of their depot in Boston at the end of August 1989.

1989 timetable

1989 timetable

with many thanks to John Brogden for the loan of the timetable,

and incorporating information from articles and publications

by Roy Marshall and David Kaye found in the libraries of Lincolnshire