YOU wait and wait for a London Bus then two come along together, but not at the village of Imber when there were 24 of the familiar red buses to chose from.

On Saturday was the return of the annual bus service to the normally deserted Wiltshire village situated in the middle of the Salisbury Plain training area.

Imber was evacuated in 1943 in order for troops to train for D-day with the residents never returning.

The annual Imberbus service has run for the past eight years on one day a year. It is operated by London Buses, making an incongruous sight as they cross the military ranges full of passengers.

The event was organised by Sir Peter Hendy along with a dedicated team of vintage bus owners who brought their restored old Routemasters to the village.

Sir Peter said: “This year we have more buses than ever before with 23 old buses along with one of the new Routemaster buses.

“We are running buses every ten minutes from Warminster Station to Imber. This is unprecedented as even when the village was populated it only had a bus twice a week. We have trips throughout the day from the centre of the village across the plain to Gore Cross, Tilshead, Chitterne, the Lavingtons and New Zealand farm.”

Sir Peter was surprised by the number of visitors who arrived for the special bus service.

He said: “It’s a popular event but I am staggered by the number that have arrived this year. I have never seen so many here at Imber. This event is a fundraiser for the village. Monies have been raised for the church as all the fares were donated to the Support of St Giles church and the Royal British Legion. Everyone providing the buses does it without charge as do the drivers and conductors.

“The event has grown year on year and this year the numbers were increased with a special train service from Peterborough and London to Warminster, bringing 240 passengers.”