AEC Reliance Harrington Cavalier

477 AOP

FT AECDetails

Chassis AEC Reliance
Chassis Number 2MRU3RA2884
Engine AEC 6 cyl mid mounted underfloor AH 470 Developing 120 bhp at 2000 revs p/m
Engine Number
Brakes Air assisted
Steering Unsassisted
Transmission Manual 5 speed syncro
Body Harrington Cavalier
Body Number 2213
Date of first registration 04/04/1960


The AEC Reliance was new in 1960 to Birmingham based independent operator, Flights tours. The coach has a Harrington Cavalier style body, which is furnished with tables and Chapman reclining seats, as this coach was used by the Aston Villa football team. Flights entered the coach into the annual British Coach Rally at Brighton, winning the prestigious “Coach Of The Year” award, for the best vehicle at the rally.

The coach was later sold to local operator Halls Coaches, Rock End Biddulph, for the remainder of its operational life. Flights reacquired A77 AOP in 1992, and restored the vehicle over the next 6 years. They then entered in the 1999 British coach rally, winning the trophy for the “Best Preserved Coach” of that year. Classic Connections acquired the vehicle in 2007 and continue to maintain it to a very high standard.

Subsequent Action

Sold by Flights to Halls Coaches, Rock End, Biddulph in 1966
Bought back in 1988
Sent to Plaxtons for restoration – no action
Returned to Flights and restored in their own workshops
Entered the 1999 British Coach Rally
Won the Best Preserved Coach award

Other Transfers
Sold to Goodwins, Manchester in 2004 

Purchased by Classic Connections in 2008

27 reclining seats with six tables
CD tuner with PA system
12 volt power point for mobile laptop and coolbox operation

Gallery – Prior to collection and as purchased (photographer unknown)

Gallery – Undergoing restoration

9 - Ready for sign writing 10 - The sign writers art 11 - The sign writers art #2 8 - Looking good 7 - In the paint shop at Wallace Arnold #2 6 - In the paint shop at Wallace Arnold scan0070

Repairs and Servicing


21.08 – Over to Manchester to look at vehicle test run
29.08 – Goodwins deliver, park in Unit One
30.08 – Down to Wallace Arnold for painting
17.09 – Collect after repaint and – adjustment to gear linkage
21.09 – Vinyls applied and audio system fitted


19.05 – Fit new clutch master cyl, bleed and test
02.06 – Bleed, fit new cyl hose
05.08 – Down to Wallace Arnold for pre MOT inspection
19.08 – Collect after MOT pass Class 6
16.12 – Obtain new o/s wiper motor, repairs to n/s motor and shaft


–.01 – Fit new wiper motor o/s and repairs to n/s motor shaft and arm
23.03 – Remove cyl heads, fit new gaskets, service injectors, refit heads, adjust tappets and tighten down heads after road test
23.03 Fit new facia to saloon clock.
18.08 – Vosa test prep and pass Class Vi
12.10 – Fit & wire in table lamps
12.10 – Fit smaller wiper blades
12.10 – Fit new mirrors to original brackets.


25.04 – Throttle return spring breaks, carry out temporary repairs before fitting new spring and bracket
13.06 – Overheating – Again!
13.07 – Remove cylinder heads
31.07 – Refit after specialists machining
23.08 – Repairs to locker door and windscreen washer jets
24.08 – MOT inspection and Class 6 test
01.09 – Retighten cyl heads – tight!
22.11 – Fit headlamp flasher switch


11.04 – Water pump leaking
13.04 – Remove remote gear box, seperate water pump drive shaft
27.04 – Take to SP water pump at Warrington for overhaul
09.05 – Reassemble and refit
04.07 – Repairs to radio panel, damaged during break in
16.08 – Repairs to vinyl on front pillars
18.08 – Take vehicle for MOT test to Redfearn Travel – pass Class 6


01.07 – Make and fit ashtray fronts
01.07 – FIt hazard warning kit
20.08 – Service and adjust tappets
20.08 – Pre MOT inspection
11.09 – MOT pass Class 6
15.10 – Alternator not charging, slipping on shaft – Weld and make good.
15.10 – Fit new pin to door lock mechanism
18.12 – Buy and modify new low air pressure warning switch, fit as necessary
18.12 – Degrease and deep clean lino floor


07.01 – Make up adaptor & fit new air brake warning buzzer switch
20.05 – Repair air vent flaps in dashboard
26.05 – Breakdown at Pontefract on M62 – Rescued by Kiran
03.06 – Identify broken push rod
17.06 -Fit replacement push rod & adjust tappets
01.07 – Clean windows & alpine roof lights
29.07 – Road  test & fuel
27.08 – Pre MOT inspection
11.09 – MOT test. Pass Class 6
04.11 – Wash off – end of season

February 2015

Carry out service and pre-MOT inspection

March 2015

MOT test, class 6, pass no advisories

May 2015

Top up steering box

Remove spare seats from storage and place in boot



5 thoughts on “AEC Reliance Harrington Cavalier

  1. Could you please let us know when and where would 477 AOP vehicle be at next year (2015)?

    Kind Regards,

    Lucy Cooper

    1. Hi Lucy
      As you may know this coach lives in Bradford. As yet we have not planned our 2015 calendar so don`t know which coach will be attending which event. We usually post the event listing around February so keep an eye out around then.
      Neil Millington

      1. Hi Lucy

        Good to talk to your Grand dad tonight about the above vehicle I`ll try and post some more pictures of the coach in the next few weeks. you should be able to print off any on our web site if you so wish.


  2. I currently own ktc330c featured in the Aec reliance book winner of coach rally 1964also owned by halls of biddulf origanly in ivory and cream it is currently being refurbished it would be great to know of any body spares available anywhere

    1. Hi David

      Thanks for your post and interesting to hear that you too have a Halls owned vehicle. No doubt you have seen the posts on this and our lead page. Regrettably we have very few body spares apart from a complete fibre glass front panel and a large quantity of red plastic trim inserts to go in the external aluminum trim. I believe this to be a Happich product.


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