Stan Butler (Reg Varney)
Stan is a bus driver who works for the Luxton and District Bus Company, with his best mate Jack. His inspector Inspector Blake commonly known as “Blakey”. Stan lives with his Mum (Doris Hare), sister Olive (Anna Karen) and Olive’s husband Arthur who is more obsessed with his motorbike than Olive, which regularly causes arguments throughout regular episodes. Stan is often chatting up the “clippies” at the bus depot.
Mabel Butler (Cicely Courtneidge (season 1), Doris Hare (seasons 2-7)
Stan’s mum Mabel is a maiden in distress when it comes to money. The Butler household is forever losing money and regularly getting the electricity cut off. Mabel is frequently caught up in arguments between Arthur, Olive and Stan.
Olive Rudge (Anna Karen)
Poor old Olive is always being criticised by her husband Arthur, even though she helps her mum with household jobs and frequently helping Stan do the decorating. Olive has been a clippie twice at the bus depot, both being unsuccessful. She is always wanting “an early night” with Arthur, much to his displeasure.
Arthur Rudge (Michael Robbins)
Arthur is Stan’s brother in law. He is somewhat snooty and stuck up, and frequently resists Olive’s intimate advances. It is also implied that he has had a vasectomy (always referred to as his “operation”), which is a frequent source of ridicule from Stan. Arthur is always tampering with his motorbike, which usually falls apart. In the second of three spin off films Mutiny on the Buses Arthur is made redundant from his unknown job and becomes a bus driver, being trained by Stan who gives him driving lessons on his break.
Jack Harper (Bob Grant)
Jack is Stan’s best friend and next door neighbour who is always getting into trouble with Stan and getting reprimanded by Inspector Blake. Whether it is tampering with radio controls, changing and putting “DIVERSION” road signs in the wrong places or going on dates with the buxom clippies, Jack is always getting into regular scrapes with Stan.
Inspector “Blakey” Blake (Stephen Lewis)
Inspector Blake is the inspector at the bus depot. Whenever there is a “brilliant idea” at the bus depot, it is usually Blakey’s – which are usually elaborate schemes to temper Stan and Jack’s frequent insubordination, or entrap them in their misadventures in a bid to get them fired. However Blakey’s schemes typically backfire with hilarious consequences, and either land him in trouble with the General Manager or he ends up in hospital.