Title ID 7266Collection ID928
TitleIt's Only a Coach Ride Away
Date[ca. 1967]
CollectionMaidstone and District Motor Services
Genre/TypeProfessionalFilm/Video companyCorporateNon-fictionPromotional/Publicity
ThemeTravel Transport
KeywordsBuildings Castles Ferries Harbours Landscape Motor Vehicles Outings Passenger Vehicles Roads Rural Areas Steam Locomotives Tourism Transport Travel
LocalBodiam Canterbury Maidstone Goodwood Sheffield Park
RegionalEast Sussex Kent West Sussex
NationalEngland United Kingdom
ProductionSouthdown Motor Services Film Unit
Commissioning bodyThe Maidstone & District Motor Services Ltd
WriterScript by Christopher Ede.
NarratorPeter Sissons
Other creditsWith acknowledgement to the manufacturers of BP lubricants for their assistance in the making of the Ford Motor Works section of this film.
FormatColour Sound
Duration34min. 27sec.
Copyright & AccessCopyright restrictions apply, contact Screen Archive South East for details


A promotional film made during the 1960s to promote the various coach tours organised by Maidstone and District Motor Services Ltd. The film features the various coach tour locations and emphasises the company's organisational abilities in arranging tours.


The film opens with countryside scenes and shots of historical buildings across southern England, including Bodiam Castle and Canterbury Cathedral. The narrator explains that such sights are "only a coach ride away". Opening titles: "Maidstone and District Motor Services Ltd. present" & "Its only a coach ride away". Shots of the interior of a coach office with a member of staff talking to a customer. The narrator explains all the different options available to the customer. The film goes onto feature some of the coach tour options, featuring scenes of places across southern England, including Woburn Abbey, Longleat House, Compton Acres, the New Forest and Southampton. The narrator enthusiastically explains about the places featured and the types of activities that the whole family can enjoy.

The film moves onto Sussex, featuring race day at Goodwood; the narrator explains that there is the opportunity to place bets on the the horses. Shots of Bodiam Castle and visitors looking around; the narrator explains its history. At the Bluebell Railway a steam locomotive is seen on the tracks picking up passengers at Sheffield Park station. The narrator explains the railway advertisements reminds of an "era long since past". Shots from the steam train as it makes its way along the line. The film continues to feature other places of interest to the coach traveler including, the Ford factory at Dagenham, Southend illuminations, cruises on the River Thames and Blenheim Palace, before reaching Canterbury.

At Canterbury there are shots of the cathedral, accompanied by its history as told by the narrator. The film concludes by featuring more places, including Coventry, Chepstow Castle, Tintern Abbey, South Wales and other beauty spots. The narrator emphasises that the coach company can be trusted to organise your outing and refreshments. Shot of a Maidstone and District Motor Services Ltd. logo; the narrator urges people to remember the name as it is "your passport to carefree travel". For ideas on trips and tours he states that people can call in at their local M&D office as they are there to help. The film ends with the same scenes from the opening of the film with a woman at the coach office talking to a member of staff. [End credits].