GS15 on 471, Knockholt Pound

Sevenoaks Running Day

Sunday May 13th 2012

Prepared by Ian Smith, 24th May 2012.

402: Sevenoaks to Dunton Green and back: RML2699

GS15 was followed into the bus station by red RML2699. James was conducting, and enticed me by offering an empty front seat upstairs. I climbed aboard, and went upstairs.

We followed the familiar route north out of Sevenoaks, via the War Memorial, Sevenoaks Station and Riverhead. The big RML purred smoothly along. We drove up through Dunton Green, past the garage site, and turned at the roundabout below Star Hill. We trickled back down through the village to pull up at The Duke's Head.

RML2699 at Sevenoaks for 402 RML2699 at DG

On the return journey we met GS15 heading north, as we came into Riverhead.

RML2699 at Dunton Green on 402 GS15 at Riverhead

Further on, we caught up with RML2323 beyond Sevenoaks Station, and followed it up St.Botolph's Drive to the War Memorial, then along to the bus station.

RML2323 at Sevenoaks War Memorial on 403 RML2323 at Sevenoaks War Memorial on 403

On the way we passed T1030 heading for Otford, and XF3, which was heading for Green Street Green on the 402.

RML2323 at Sevenoaks RML2699 at Sevenoaks

106: Sevenoaks to Fawke Common, and back: SO308

The Albion Nimbus was just ready to depart for Fawke Common, with Peter Aves driving. I climbed aboard, and the little bus roared off northwards, towards the War Memorial. We passed DMS1868 on a 401, and cruised down towards St.Johns. Peter located the right turn into Bayham Road, and we rattled eastwards through the older part of residential Sevenoaks to Seal Hollow. A left turn then a right took us onto Blackhall Lane, and a different style of hosing: exclusive mansions hidden behind hedges, all along the north side of the lane. We reached Godden Green, the natural terminus, and squeezed past the traffic parked by The Bucks Head, and headed into a green tunnel to Fawke Common.

SO308 at Sevenoaks on 106 DMS1868 on 401

At Fawke Common the little crossroads was used to do a reverse turn, as it always has been. Many of us alighted briefly to take photos.

Then it was back on the bus, and back through Godden Green to Sevenoaks - a short route, but packed with variety.

Back in the bus station I had to make up my mind about a way home. Leopard 2816 was standing at the top of the bus station with blinds for the 705, reminding me that that was one option.

SO308 at Fawke Common on 106 2816 ready for 705

402: Sevenoaks to Tunbridge Wells: XF3

Another possibility was RT604, which was to operate back to Croydon (Fairfield Halls) as a 403B. RF429 loaded well for the trip to Orpington Station. Another way would have been RF600 to Westerham or Redhill.

RT604 at Sevenoaks for 403B RT604 at Sevenoaks for 403B

Whilst I was pondering a different bus squeezed through the familiar crowd in the bus station: NV116 was on the shuttle up from the garage at Otford.

NV116 at Sevenoaks on 401 NV116 at Sevenoaks on 401

The crowd loading onto RT604 was enormous. I hung back, and decided to go the other way, on XF3 to Tunbridge Wells Station.

XF3 at Sevenoaks on 402 XF3 at Sevenoaks on 402

There were just a handful of us on the Fleetline as we headed south. I took a front seat upstairs, and enjoyed the views. Wwe threaded our way out of Sevenoaks, and wound down Riverhill, then headed down the long green straight to Hildenborough. The passage of Tonbridge brought back some treasured memories. It wasn't until we had passed Tonbridge Station that it occurred to me that I could have changed there. But I enjoyed the drive over the weald through High Brooms, and the descent through Tunbridge Wells to the station, where I offerred thanks and alighted. Another good day!

Photos by Ian Smith. Click on any of them for a larger picture.

Many thanks to all the drivers, conductors, owners and organisers who made this such a successful day. Thanks especially to the CBR team, and to G0-Coach for their contribution.

RT604, RT3183
RF406*, RF429*, RF146, RF600, RF633
XF3, RML2323, RML2699*
SO308, SC390, 2816
DMS1868*, T684*, T1030*
NV116, Malta Bedford, Metrobus 395

system map

Ian's Bus-stop One Two Three Four Five Six