Holiday on the Buses

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Holiday on the Buses
"Holiday on the Buses" (1973).jpg
Directed by Bryan Izzard
Produced by Ronald Chesney
Ronald Wolfe
Written by Ronald Chesney
Ronald Wolfe
Starring Reg Varney
Anna Karen
Doris Hare
Michael Robbins
Bob Grant
Stephen Lewis
Adam Rhodes
Music by Denis King
Cinematography Brian Probyn
Edited by James Needs
Distributed by MGM-EMI
Release dates
26 December 1973 (1973-12-26)
Running time
85 minutes
Country United Kingdom
Language English

Holiday on the Buses is a 1973 British comedy film directed by Bryan Izzard and starring Reg Varney and Doris Hare.[1] The film is the third and final spin-off film from the ITV sitcom On the Buses and succeeded the films On the Buses (1971) and Mutiny on the Buses (1972).[2] The film was produced by Ronald Chesney and Ronald Wolfe for Hammer Films.[1]


Three of the company's buses are wrecked due to Stan's negligent bus driving, which means Stan (Reg Varney), Jack (Bob Grant) and Inspector Blake (Stephen Lewis) are sacked. Stan and Jack get a job as bus crew at a Pontins holiday camp in Prestatyn, North Wales, only to find that Blakey has also got a job at the camp, as security inspector. Stan invites the family to stay (using his staff discount) whilst he proceeds to chat up the guests and staff. Tight fisted Arthur refuses to pay the train fare, instead relying on his ever present motorcycle and sidecar to take the Butlers to the camp. They meet Stan on the road, who accidentally forces them into a kerb causing all the luggage to land in a river and all the family's clothes are ruined.

Meanwhile, Stan and Jack embark on their usual misadventures whilst trying to evade Blakey's watchful eye, who is also trying to teach an old-time dancing class with the camp's guests in his spare time, whilst Mum meets Bert, an Irish widower who is also holidaying at the camp and the pair form a close friendship. Stan's attempts to snare the affections of Mavis, a female guest are repeatedly thwarted by her overbearing mother, and then his own family obligations to babysit Little Arthur, who sprays the inside of the chalet with ink. The Butlers then have to try and redecorate the chalet without Blakey finding out. Stan's final attempt at seducing Mavis fails when the group goes on a boat cruise in a stormy sea, where Stan succumbs to seasickness, whilst Jack, as ever manages to steal Stan's love.

Arthur manages to patch up the damage to the chalet, but the new paint is ruined a second time by Olive losing her glasses and putting handprints all over the walls. Arthur uses petrol from his motorcycle to clean the paint brushes, but neglects to tell anyone Olive poured it down the toilet; as a result, Stan's carelessly discarded cigarette causes the toilet to explode. He and Jack set up a diversion to keep Blakey busy whilst they steal a toilet from the camp's stores and repair the damage.

Despite these mishaps, the Butler family’s holiday ends with reasonable success, and a new batch of guests arrive at the camp. Blakey gets fired by the manager for his romantic misadventures with the camp nurse, whilst Stan and Jack set their sights on two more female guests. They borrow the bus for an evening trip to the beach, but the bus sinks in the sand and is submerged when the tide comes in. They are sacked and end up on the dole again; where Stan finds to his horror that Blakey is now a clerk at the labour exchange. Blakey initially gloats over Stan’s predicament, then offers him a job driving a wrecking ball – as it is appropriate for someone who is "always smashing things up". Stan is then seen demolishing a building as the end credits roll.


Production notes[edit]

It was filmed on location at The Pontin's Holiday Camp, Prestatyn, North Wales.[3] Interiors were completed at EMI-MGM Elstree Studios, Borehamwood.[4] The film was also Michael Robbins and Reg Varney's final appearances in the On The Buses franchise; having already quit the TV series for its final season which aired the same year. Scenes were also filmed at Dyserth, at the Waterfall Shop.[5]

The open top bus was XFM 229, a Bristol LD new to Crosville Motor Services.[6]


  1. ^ a b "Holiday on the Buses (1973)". BFI. 
  2. ^ "On The Buses". 
  3. ^ "Pontins Prestatyn Holiday Camp 2002". 
  4. ^ "Reel Streets". 
  5. ^ "Reel Streets". 
  6. ^ "Bus_Bristol VR". 

External links[edit]