Prepared on Notepad by Ian Smith, This page created 6th April 2018. Best on 800*600.

Shorter and taller: 10.2m long, 4.39m high

short high DLA Subsequent DLAs were shorter and taller than the first batches, at 10.2m long, 4.39m high. This was probably at the insistence of London Regional Transport, at least in terms of height, even if it made acceptability less outside London. The length reduction lessened route restrictions, with London's overabundance of tight corners and right-angle junctions.

Experience had shown how much the earlier interior layout was disliked because it was dark and claustrophobic, so the staircase was moved forwards to behind the driver, which had the welcome advantage of four extra seats on the lower deck, even if the upper deck lost two. There was also a rear window in the saloon. With the high-backed sideways-facing seats its lack had been especially felt on the earlier buses.

Route 68 was converted gradually from autumn 1999 using new DLA126-141 at Norwood, initially alongside the VAs from Stamford Hill.

GarageRoute noRoute
N Norwood68 Euston Stn - Holborn - Aldwych - Waterloo Bdg - Elephant & Castle - Camberwell Green - Herne Hill - Norwood Garage
N Norwood2 Crystal Palace - Norwood Garage - Brixton - Stockwell - Vauxhall - Victoria - Hyde Park Corner - Baker Street - Marylebone Stn
N Norwood249 Crystal Palace - Tooting Bec - Balham Station
N Norwood417 Crystal Palace - Norwood - Streatham Hill - Clapham Common Station - Clapham Common Old Town
N Norwood137 Streatham Hill - Clapham Common Stn - Battersea Pk Stn - Sloane Sq - Hyde Pk Cnr - Marble Arch - Oxford Circus

DLA313 on 2, Victoria

Norwood's DLA313 passes Victoria Station in October 2005, heading south for Norwood Garage.
Brixton took DLA142-153 in October 1999 for route 59.

GarageRoute noRoute
BN Brixton59 Euston Stn - Holborn - Aldwych - Waterloo - Kennington - Brixton - Brixton Garage

The turn of the year saw a scattering of new DLAs: 154-158 at Croydon, 159-165 at Wood Green. In spring 2000 conversion to low-floor of Norwood's 68 group operation was completed with DLA166-177 at Norwood, the allocations of VAs from Stamford Hill (and briefly Tottenham) being replaced by April as well as the Olympians from Norwood. Not that Norwood kept the DLAs route-bound: they appeared among the 2's Olympians fairly soon, followed during the summer by appearances fairly frequently on routes 249 and 417, with Sunday operation on the 137 becoming regular from August.

DLA168 on 68 DLA134 on 468

Norwood's DLA168 heads for Euston. In October 2005 Croydon's DLA134 heads through Croydon on the 468.

Spring and summer 2000 saw new DLA178-189 at Croydon, DLA190-199 at Wood Green, and DLA200-209 at Tottenham, with Croydon converting the 468 from Metrobuses, Wood Green for the W3, and Tottenham partially converting the population on the 243 from Ms. More DLAs (up to DLA263) followed during the autumn and winter to continue the work at Croydon, Wood Green and Tottenham.

GarageRoute noRoute
TC Croydon468 Elephant & Castle - Denmark Hill - Herne Hill - West Norwood - Thornton Heath - Croydon - South Croydon Garage
AR Tottenham243 Wood Green Garage - Old Street - Holborn - Kingsway - Aldwych - Waterloo
WN Wood GreenW3 Finsbury Park Bus Stn - Stroud Green Road - Hornsey High St - Alexandra Palace Way - Lordship Lane - White Hart Lane - Tottenham High Road - Northumberland Park.

DLA191 on W3, Alexandra Palace DLA191 on W3, Alexandra Palace

Wood Green's DLA191 climbs the hill past the Ally Pally, towards Northumbeland Park Station, then later climbs back up the hill towards Finsbury Park.

In early 2001 buses began to arrive from Alexanders in Belfast as well as from Falkirk. These brought the type to Thornton Heath for a truncated but busy 109 (cut short to Brixton from its previous terminus at Trafalgar Square). L-type Olympians were displaced.

Croydon took more, for routes 312 and 197, where they had been appearing sporadically alongside the Olympians.

DLA252 on 312, Peckham Rye, January 2005

DLA252 heads south on 312 from Peckham in January 2005.

Enfield took secondhand DLAs from Tottenham when that garage lost the 188, using them to displace Ms from the 149. They also took over the work on the 279, which had been specified for operation by new Plaxton-bodied DAFs (DLPs). A handful of new DLAs joined them at Enfield in April 2001. Some worked on the 307 and 313 until needed on the 279. The 307 was officially converted to double-deckers in June 2001.

GarageRoute noRoute
TH Thornton Heath109 Croydon - West Croydon - Thornton Heath Pond - Norbury - Streatham - Streatham Hill - Brixton Station
TC Croydon312 Peckham Garage - Dulwich - Forest Hill - Sydenham - Penge - Anerley - Norwood Junction - Addiscombe - Croydon - South Croydon Garage
TC Croydon197 Norwood Junction - East Croydon - Croydon
E Enfield149 London Bridge Stn - Liverpool St - Dalston - Tottenham - Lower Edmonton - Enfield Garage
E Enfield279 Holloway - Finsbury Park - Manor House - Tottenham - Edmonton - Ponders End - Waltham Cross
E Enfield307 Brimsdown Station - Barnet, Arkley Hotel
E Enfield313 Chingford Station - Potters Bar Station - Potters Bar (Cranbourne Road Industrial Estate)

DLA 332 on 109, Croydon DLA325 and DLA 376 on 109, Croydon

109s in Croydon: 332 passes West Croydon, September 2009; DLA325 and DLA376 at the Park Street terminus, March 2010.

Tottenham gets new Belfast DLAs

May saw the arrival at Tottenham of new DLAs (DLA277-310) for the 41 and 243. These buses, built in Belfast, had DDA blinds, electric throttles, reversing cameras, and a revised dashboard layout.
GarageRoute noRoute
AR Tottenham243 Wood Green Garage - Old Street Stn (Sats/Sun) - Theobalds Road - Holborn - Kingsway - Aldwych - Waterloo (Mon-Fri)
AR Tottenham41 Archway - Crouch End - Hornsey - Turnpike Lane - Seven Sisters - Tottenham Hale

Norwood gets new DLA211-321 for the 417

In June Arriva took DLA211-321 for Norwood's 417

GarageRoute noRoute
N Norwood417 Clapham Common - Clapham Common Stn - Clapham Park Road - King's Avenue - Atkins Road - Streatham Place - Streatham Hill - Streatham Hill Stn - Leigham Court Road - Crown Lane - Norwood - Crown Dale - Central Hill - Westow Hill - Crystal Palace

Now Arriva London changed its bus-buying policy, its next orders being for President-bodied DAFs, the DLP class, and Wright-bodied Volvos (VLW). The next Alexander bodied DAFs would have to wait until 2003.

Meanwhile the DLAs mainly stayed put, the only excitement being their adventures onto unallocated routes, such as the 407 to Redhill.

There was a flurry of interest in August 2002, when Enfield received several DLAs from Wood Green for part of the 121 allocation. In November Stamford Hill garage was re-opened and received DLAs from Enfield. Brixton's work was expaned at the end of 2002, with some DLAs displaced by DLP Presidents going there. long low first batch DLA with rear window

Improved backsides

The early DLAs had been criticised for their lack of a rear window downstairs, which with high seats made that back area very gloomy. Besides which you could not see if your connecting bus was just behind. So in the second half of 2002 there started a programme to fit rear windows. This also meant displacing the rear number blind and the rear number plate.
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