Arriva London’s Green Line Heritage Fleet Routemaster bus in historic line-up at Brooklands
The ethos behind Arriva London’s Heritage Fleet is to maintain a moving history of London, and to this effect buses from the fleet are often invited to prestigious days out to continue that theme.
Such a day out was last weekend at the London Bus Museum Routemaster Day at Brooklands, where Arriva London’s RMC 1453, the first production Routemaster coach, joined the first four prototype Routemasters to celebrate 60 years since they first entered passenger service.
The location of the museum is close to the historic Green Line route 715 from Hertford to Guildford that the Routemaster coach first entered passenger service on, so it was an ideal opportunity to re-create the route for the day. RMC 1453, along with prototype Routemaster coach CRL 4, ran a special service during the day from Cobham Village via Ripley to Guildford and back.
RMC 1453 started work at Hertford garage in August 1962, when the Routemaster coaches replaced single deck RFs on route 715 between Hertford and Guildford.
The bus spent nearly 10 years at Hertford on cross-London Green Line coach work before moving to Grays in April 1972 and Reigate in February 1973 for more traditional bus work.
An overhaul at Garston, Watford in November 1973 saw the bus reappear in National Bus Company (NBC) Leaf Green livery with a white cant rail, grey wheels, London Country logo and NBC arrow in white.
It returned to bus work at Reigate, but moved around the old London Country area with spells at Grays, Leatherhead, Chelsham and Harlow before a return to London Transport ownership in January 1980.
It has only worked in London service twice since its London Country days. The first was on route 159 on the very last day of Routemaster operation in December 2005, and the second was on route 123 on the 50th anniversary service on 19th June 2010.
Since its adoption into The Arriva Heritage Fleet, it has been seen regularly at rallies and prestigious events, such as Late at the Tate, and as one of the stars of Sing London’s promotional video.
In 2013, Arriva London joined forces with the National Trust to restore the Heritage Fleet bus back to its original Green Line coach condition. Since then she has been used regularly for the National Trust summer bus tours.
Published : Thu 23rd Mar. 2017 - Wed 3rd May. 2017
Making the capital’s buses as simple to use as the London Underground is a new initiative being trialled on seven London bus routes, including Arriva London routes 150 and 128.
In association with TfL and HCT Transport, we opened our doors to welcome the public, giving them the opportunity to explore the garage, meet our operations teams, ride on a bus through the bus wash, tour our operations control centres and see & ride on some historic preserved buses.
Our recent route gains in North London include route 19, from Finsbury Park to Battersea Bridge (South Side), which has meant implementing an extensive mobilisation programme to maintain our high standards.
One of the most important elements in Arriva London’s development is the training and education it offers its staff, from engineering apprentices to graduate trainees, everyone in the business is offered the opportunity to develop and flourish.
The introduction of all new Hybrid vehicles on route 249, which Arriva London starts operating this Saturday, underlines one of our key brand values - ‘Great customer experience - We keep our customers happy every day’.
The new contract, which starts this Saturday 25th March, will have over 60 drivers and 25 new environmentally friendly hybrid buses.