RF679 at Hilders Lane

East Grinstead Running Day

Sunday April 16th 2000

Prepared by Ian Smith, April 2000

Part 2: Lunchtime at King Street

RF486 at King Street RF530 at King Street

By 1145 the bus-park in King Street was busy. There was a constant stream of buses coming in for breaks, while others were leaving to take up the continuing stream of duties. Red RF486 came in from a trip on the 434, having previously worked through from Bromley North on a long extension to the 485. Even Metrobus' 246 route doesn't reach East Grinstead! It joined red RF530, which was still in 227 mode.

LS86 at King Street RM8, RM40 at King Street

Other red buses were also in evidence, some visiting, some between duties. Leyland National LS98 looked good, wearing Express blinds for the 409, and RM2116 showed off its 1933-style livery, worn ever since its days as a showbus, whilst Routemaster RM8 and RM40 lurked in a corner behind something rather special.

That was ex-London Transport Daimler D27, which after London service had been rebuilt by Massey for Southend Transport, then later sold to Essex Police as a control and promotions vehicle. Today it was visiting.

D27 at King Street D27 at King Street

RF633 at King Street GS1 at King Street
Green buses were in evidence too. RF633 arrived and eased into the park, while RF679 was still out on the stand.

Suddenly it was all GSs: GS1 had had a busy morning, and John Huxford brought it in for a lunch break after its return trip to Oxted on the 494.
GS32, RF679 at King Street

GS62 was parked out near the toilets, waiting for a gap in the park, and GS32 pulled up behind RF679 ready for its turn on the 494. RF679 went for a loop round the block, and found a niche in the carpark on its return.
GS62, RF421 at King Street

Red door-fitted RM2107 pulled out of the park onto the stand for a running turn. Red RF421 arrived and tried to pull in behind, only to be blocked by the parked car. Green RT3491 couldn't get out of the park. Traffic jam.

RM2107 at King Street RF421, RT3491 at King Street Evidence for the police who were in attendance to give the offending car a ticket.
But the jam soon evaporated: buses on duties were not hanging around long in King Street.

In a quiet moment I grabbed something from the refreshment stall, and went to take pictures of other buses on the park: RT604 in London Country Green, RMC1476 in NCB green but LT roundels as a trainer, and RM2116.

RT604 at King Street RMC1476 at King Street RM2116 at King Street

Then my attention was grabbed by the arrival of Q83, followed by the passage of new Dennis Dart/ East Lancs DSL38 on a normal Sunday service bus. They provided a fascinating contrast in single decker development. It is hard to believe that about 65 years separate them in build date!

Q83 at King Street DSL38 at King Street

RT2177 at King Street Then the time-frame shifted firmly back to the fifties, with the arrival of immaculate RT2177, which had been performing on the 409 trips between Forest Row, East Grinstead, Felbridge, Lingfield and Dormansland. RF672 passed through on a 434 trip from Copthorne to Edenbridge. RF672 at King Street
Red RF366 came in on a 494 from Oxted, and London & Country long Dennis Dart/Plaxton DSL88 reminded us of the disappearing L&C livery as it swished through on an 84 working.
RF366 at King Street DSL88 at King Street

NBC green RT604 departed for Forest Row. Lincoln green was next: RF626 passed through on an Edenbridge to Kingscote working, followed by RLH48 on a 424 to the Stone Quarry Estate.

RF626 at King Street RLH48 at King Street

RT3228, RT3491 at King Street

More Lincoln Green followed in the shape of the RT family. RTL1256 pulled up to the top of the stand ready for a departure to Dormansland, while RT 3228 and RT3491 were together in Greenline livery at the bottom of the stand, the former ready to leave on a 708 round trip, the other just arrived. Then RT3228 pulled up behind the RTL, to allow Green-Lane's RT3491 to go off-duty into the bus-park.
RT1700, RT3148, RT3228, RTL1256 at King Street

Then, at about 1240, as I was waiting with RF679 to resume the afternoon shift, one of those magic moments happened. There were four Lincoln green RT-types in on the stand at once, RT3228 and RT3148 for the 708, RTL1256 and 1700 for the 409, changing over duties. I dashed to capture the scene on film, as it would last barely seconds. Even as I ran, RT1700 pulled away, giving me just one chance at a snap shot.
But lunch time was over. We were already late departing with a 473 to Kingscote. It had been just an hour at King Street, but an exciting one. Back to Ian's Bus-stop Part 1: morning shift Part 3: afternoon shift