RF633, Eastwick

Hertford & Stevenage

Saturday 4th, Sunday 5th June 2011

Prepared by Ian Smith, 8th June 2010.

Sunday Morning: Hertford

After breakfast on Sunday morning I paid my shot and walked along to Old London Road, where the day's garaging area was. Already there was RT2083, resplendent in its green Country Area livery, wearing a set of 715 blinds. The owners had asked especially to work on the 715 today because of their set of blinds.

Next to it was the Eastbourne Regent V, No 69, looking excellent as usual, preparing to spend a day "on hire to London Country", as several of these buses did in the 1970s.

RT2083 at Hertford Eastbourne 69, Hertford

Next to it was RM1699, ready for a day working on the 341 between Hertford and Hatfield Station.

Then RF406 arrived, set up for working on the deservedly popular 384 route to Benington Green.

RM1699 at Hertford RF406, Hertford

I enquired whether anyone had seen John Huxford and GS2, and was told to try the bus station. So Nigel Henty and I headed that way. I had never been up to Chapmore End, and had arranged with John for an early morning trip up there before the day's programme began. He was keen to try out his new camera too!

We duly found GS2 in Bircherley Green Bus Station, ready for the classic 333 route to Chapmore End.

GS2 at Hertford GS2, Hertford

But Country Bus Rallies was not the only operator of classic routes in Hertford that day. Centrebus operates the 310 on Sundays at present, and Dart SLF 541, looking good in Centrebus livery, duly arrived. This bus is no newcomer here, having previously worked for Trustline.

Another classic local route is the 395, which links Hertford's Sele Farm Estate with Hertford, Ware, and the Fanham Common Estate. Today Arriva Solo 2463 demonstated that Arriva The Shires still does have a toe-hold on Sunday operations.

Centrebus 541 on 310 at Hertford Arriva 2463 on 395, Hertford

RT3254 arrived to work the first bus of the day through to Stevenage on the 390, as usual, although for once I would not be on it. Meanwhile RF633 sat quietly on the other side of the bus station waiting for the first official trip on the 333 to Bengeo at 1110.

RT3254 on 390, Hertford RF633 on 333 at Hertford

Another Centrebus arrived: 748, a Scania / Wrightbus Solar, illustrates just how long modern buses can be. This one seats just three more than a Central Area RF!

Centrebus 748 at Hertford

Speaking of Central Area RFs, RF429 had just arrived. Odd to think that these buses too were the maximum length allowed when they were built: 9.0m, seating 41.

The little group for the photographic reconnaisance crossed over to GS2, and boarded for the 1010 to Chapmore End.

RF429 at Hertford GS2 on 333 at Hertford

Part Five: Hertford, Chapmore End and Bengeo

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

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