I came out of Sevenoaks Station wondering whether I could face the walk up the hill to the bus station, and was about to get a taxi when I saw RT604 coming on the 403 from Croydon. "'Calloo callay, O frabjous day', he chortled in his joy". I quickly crossed the road to the stop, and joined the others waiting at the stop. RT604 pulled up, and actually had spaces aboard! I climbed into the saloon, and we were away, up St. Botolph's Road, under the magnificent trees, up to the War Memorial, then along the ridge road into the town and to the bus station.
XF3 had arrived, and was wearing 402 blinds for its journey up from Tunbrige Wells.
SNB340 was also wearing 402 blinds ready for its first foray northwards towards Green Street Green, towards which it could venture as far as the LEZ boundary at Pratts Bottom..
Sister SNB449, one of the later, cheaper Series B models without the air processing pod, was set up ready to venture along the narrow lanes beyond Otford to Kemsing.
RF600 wore blinds for the 413 to Chipstead. The 413 and 413A were a pair of featured routes for the day, lacking only the Sunday special journeys to Chevening Church and Covney Green.
RF146, wearing its still-new London Transport canary yellow and Lincoln Green livery on its modernised body, was also dedicated to the 413, while Country Area RF633, waiting across the road, wore blinds for the 404, which route took over the remaining 413 journeys in later years.
Another pair of RFs awaited turns too: RF315 was to work on the 421 through to Heaverham, while Central Area RF429 was to join the 413 allocation. Dunton Green - the Sevenoaks Area garage - not only borrowed red RFs for Summer Sundays, but had some allocated for a while.
RT604 had had its blinds reset for the morning working to Orpington on the 431A, a variant that worked via Knockholt Station and Green Street Green rather than the 431's Chelsfield (not amenable these days to double-decker working). The return would be via another variant, the 431D, that served Green Street Green, Fort Halstead and Polhill rather than Halstead and Knockholt Pound.
More buses were still arriving: Green line RF28 came in, followed by Maidstone & District Reliance SC390, which would work on the M&D routes going east from Sevenoaks.
RML2323, in its London Country light green and yellow, was tucked in behind the two RFs, and was scheduled to work on the Westerham duties. Next to it was Leyland Titan T1101, working today on the 401. It had already arrived in service from Dartford.
Also here for the Westerham runs, wearing the later 483 number, was preserved Metrobus Olympian 395.
Behind the Olympian was parked a bus that had caught my eye as I arrived. Now I went to have a look at the Malta Bedford...
Photos by Ian Smith. Click on any of them for a larger picture.
Ian's Bus-stop Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4 Part 5