Prepared on Notepad by Ian Smith, This page created 21st June 2011, updated 14th January 2015. Best on 800*600.

Go-Coach Dart SLFs

Go-Coach DMS Go-Coach started bus operations modestly, with an RML in London livery (for hires) and a step-entrance Dennis Dart. To simplify operations they rented space in Bowens Yard at Knockholt Pound, from where they operated the 421 and 413 for Kent County Council, with the trunk 401 (Tunbridge Wells - Westerham/Chartwell) on Sundays.


A low-floor Dart/Marshall was acquired in October 2010. Once Metroline DMS19, it had spent a couple of years in the West Midlands. Now the 9.3m bus was painted in Go-Coach livery - a startling yellow and mauve, with a large Go logo. It wanted to be noticed! This became the regular bus on the Kent contracts.

DMS19 on Sunday 401, Sevenoaks, May 2008 DMS19 at Otford Garage

DMS19 on the 401, glimpsed from the cafe in Sevenoaks bus-station in May 2010, and at rest in Otford garage, May 2012.


A longer but older bus was acquired in early 2010. 3179 had a fascinating history, much of it in the surrounding area. Starting with Maidstone & District in 1996, the 10.6m Pointer had transferred in 1998 to Dartford, with Arriva Kent Thameside, where it donned Arriva turquoise and champagne. Dartford had it painted red in 2003 for service on TfL services. It had then yo-yo-ed across the Thames between Dartford and Grays, before going on loan to Horsham, where, still red, it acted as spare for the 465 contract. When not needed for that, it worked Park & Ride duties. Metrobus took over the 465 in 2009, together with its buses, including 3179. It moved to store at Crawley, then fairly quickly via Stafford Bus Centre to Go-Coach.

It was repainted yellow and mauve. Whether Kent objected to the livery on its trunk 401 route or what, just a few months later it went into very dark green with Kent Invicta logos.

3179 on 401 at Sevenoaks, May 2010 3179 on 401 at Sevenoaks, May 2011

3179, in its short-lived Go-Coach livery, at Sevenoaks Bus Station on the 401, May 2010, and a year later in the County Links livery for KCC..


A younger, 10.7m Pointer2 came to join 3179 ready for the daily takeover of the 401 in April 2010. 3593 was owned by Kent County Council, and came on loan. It had previously been on loan to Southlands Coaches, Metrobus, and Arriva Southern Counties, mostly on the 401. Now it was GoCoach's turn. It went from Kent's insipid white branded livery into the dark green with white Invicta's.

3593 on 401 at Sevenoaks 3593 on 401 at Sevenoaks

3593 in its Arriva Kent & Sussex days at Sevenoaks Bus Station on the 401, May 2008.

DLD95, 96

In October 2010 Go-Coach bought a pair of 10.1m Pointer2s from Metroline, where they had been dual doorway DLD95 and 96. Go-Coach had the centre doorways removed, and yellow/mauve applied. Very smart they looked too.

Go-Coach DLD DLD95 off 200 at Otford Garage

Taking a Sunday break in the garage at Otford, DLD95, in May 2012.


2013 saw a need for some larger single-deckers on long country routes, and in the Tunbridge Wells area, and Go-Coach acquired a pair of 11.3m SPDs from Go-Ahead North East (V212/3 ERG).

V213ERG on 421 at Farningham V213ERG on 421 at Eynsford Stn

SPD V213ERG (ex Go-Ahead North-East 8213) took me from Farningham to Eynsford Station in March 2013.


In January 2014 Go-Coach increased the frequency on the Dartford local route 453, renumbering it Dart1 and Dart2. To promote the service Dart MPDs V305MDP and YT51EAC (both acquired during 2013) were repainted overall purple with a white Dart along the flanks.

Expansion in 2014

Go-Coach continued to expand its business in 2014, winning more Kent County tender awards. More Darts were bought, three of them short buses from West Midlands Special Needs Transport (two MPDs and a Wright Crusader). Ex-Eastbourne Cadets were also acquired.

Bus Stop SLF index. Go-Coach SLFs. histories. photo refs.