GPO Vehicles

Make Bedford
Model J3
Type 30 cwt Utility Vehicle
Body Builder  
Use Used by 3 or 4 man crews
Registration Number  
Fleet Number  
Date of picture 1974

Bedford J3 6 cylinder, petrol engined, crew cabbed 30cwt Utility.  Access to the crew section of the cab was by the passenger door. Many PO engineers thought these were wartime lorries.  In fact this model remained in production for export orders right through to the demise of the Bedford make in the early 1990s.

A New 30 cwt Utility Vehicle
Taken from External Plant News - No. 38 October 1975

Although the standard 4 Ton Utility vehicle provides very useful support for activities in the external field it has the disadvantage that it is classified as a Heavy Goods Vehicle and can only be driven by a suitably qualified driver. Field experience has also shown that there are spheres of activity where a lighter vehicle has advantages, principally to support three-man parties on overhead and underground work. To meet these needs a 30 cwt Utility vehicle has been reintroduced and production units are going into service.

Earlier units of the new series used Leyland forward control chassis; later units were how-ever built on Bedford chassis with normal controls.

To help reduce the weight of the vehicles and keep them below the Heavy Goods Vehicle licence group, both have petrol engines. Crew cabs are provided and special attention has been paid to keeping down noise levels in the cabs.

The bodies are fitted with welfare facilities which include a gas ring and there is adequate space for hanging clothes.

Bottles of propane gas are carried in a locker, within the body of the vehicle, with access by external doors on the near side. Beneath this locker is another, suspended from the underside of the body, designed for the storage of inflammable liquids such as paraffin and methylated spirits.

The interior of the body is fitted with shelving designed to accommodate the range of tools, stores and plant expected to be carried by a vehicle of this type.

Two medium or four light poles can also be carried.


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Last revised: February 06, 2021