Julien’s Auctions lists Paul McCartney’s tour bus, the Wings Tour Bristol double-decker bus for bidding. They estimated earnings around $200,000 to $300,000 for the bus.
Julien’s Auctions enlists English musician Paul McCartney’s double decker bus for bidding on its auction site. McCartney’s Wings Tour Bristol double-decker bus had bids expected around $200,000 to $300,000.
McCartney, who was a former Beatles member, established the American-British rock band Paul McCartney and Wings, or Wings. The band formed when The Beatles stopped being a group, and made Denny Seiwell as their drummer and Denny Laine as guitarist.
McCartney’s new band set off for their 1972 Wings Over Europe tour with the Bristol double-decker bus known as WNO 481.
Julien’s Auctions placed the bus as part of its Played, Worn, & Torn: Rock ‘n’ Roll Iconic Guitars and Memorabilia auction.
Paul McCartney’s Wings tour bus discovered in Spain in a “state of decay”
The bus featured an exterior painted with blue, red, green, yellow, and reflected psychedelic-style artworks. It showed the hippie style of its current era. The bus traveled across nine European countries in 1972.
McCartney brought back the bus to Britain after finding it in Spain in a “state of decay.” He breathed a new life into the bus through making it fully functional and look like its original design.
Julien’s Auctions founder Martin Nolan said that the bus went all over Germany, Finland, and southern France, among others. “Just a summer of fun with the Wings band,” he added.
The Wings Tour Bristol double-decker bus’ unique features
Renowned artist Geoffrey Cleghorn did the bus’ original psychedelic artwork. He modeled the design after styling The Beatles’ Yellow Submarine album cover. Cleghorn did impressive work for bands like The Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd, The Who, and others.
Cleghorn’s unique art style gave the bus its new life, making it a fun vehicle for a band who traveled with their families.
The bus interiors featured restorative works with thoroughly designed details to bring its original condition. The reworks featured wooden bunk beds where the band members’ children would have slept on. The lower cabins had bright yellow curtains complementing the psychedelic paint scheme of the bus’ exteriors.
The Bristol double-decker bus features a Gardner 5LW 7-liter diesel engine-wise and a manual transmission. These engines highlight its dependable fuel economy that are commonly used in buses, work trucks, and marine applications.
The bus became fully restored due to diligence from a workshop in Thorpe le Soken, Essex. Julien’s website stated that the vehicle’s restorative efforts commenced in 2019, with bodywork completed in November 2022 and the running gear done in June this year.
Seiwell recounts “stories to tell” from the bus through provenance letter
A letter of provenance from the band’s drummer Seiwell accompanied the enlistment of the tour bus in Julien’s Live website.
The letter said that the bus accompanied the band throughout the onset of the Wings 1972 European tour. Seiwell expressed as well that if the bus trunks could talk, there would be “some stories” it could tell.
“It now needs to be retired and what better way than to return to the UK and rejoin the ‘Wings Tour Bus,’” the letter further read. It added that the band each valued the memories of Wings, the friendship it sparked with McCartney and his then-wife Linda, and the fans.
Julien’s Auctions has the listing still up on its website. They estimated sales between $200,000 to $300,000. Early bids that are currently at 2 amount to only $70,000.
Learn more about the Wings Tour Bristol double-decker bus below.
Banner photo via Julien’s Live website.