A FABULOUS festival of local buses through the generations is being held this weekend at the Transport Museum in Chapel Lane, Wythall, and visitors will be able to ride on them.

"Our museum is entirely run by volunteers and we're really looking forward to Sunday", said Malcolm Keeley, collections manager and a trustee of the museum.

"There are several anniversaries this month. Our 1937 Birmingham Daimler, came out of the factory 70 years ago.

"The last of Birmingham's traditional open back platform buses retired thirty years ago. Their replacements, the Daimler Fleetlines that were the first generation of rear-engine buses, finished ten years ago. This will be a real festival of blue and cream buses and visitors will be able to ride the generations, including the grand old dame herself. The miniature steam railway will also be in action for visitors."

The museum preserves one of the largest collections of buses, coaches and battery-electric vehicles in the UK. The new exhibition hall and other improvements cost over a million pounds, of which the Heritage Lottery Fund contributed £911,000 Visitors are welcomed with an introductory film that shows how the developing bus industry influenced people's lives. There are games and other interactive exhibits, and small exhibits such as uniforms and ticket machines.

Pride of place, however, goes to the buses that carried many millions of Midlanders over the years and are now restored and maintained by the museum's volunteers. This includes a 1949 Wolverhampton trolleybus - powered by electricity through overhead wires.

The Transport Museum, Wythall, is normally open from 11am on Saturdays and Sundays until the end of November but opens at 10.30 on October 14. Included in the rides on October 14 are journeys to Wythall from central Birmingham, departing Hill Street, near to Navigation Street, at 11am and 12noon, with a fare of only £1 each way. Further details about the museum can be found on its website www.bammot.org.uk