RT604 at Leatherhead

Leatherhead Running Day

Sunday 6th September 2007

Prepared by Ian Smith, 6th October 2009

Part 3: Leatherhead

The bus park seemed to have a good number of buses on display. I walked over to the Country Bus Rallies pergola to acquire a programme, and decided what I was going to do first. It left me time to have a good look around at the assembled buses. Right next to the pergola was GS2, presumably acting as an advert for the event, as it was not going anywhere soon, despite wearing blinds for the 422. There was already a good queue for the first buses out.


But where was my first ride? RF28 did not seem to have arrived yet. Ah, there it came, pulling into the Randalls Road base, with roofboards in place for the 712/713..

RF315, recovered fully from its problems at Sevenoaks, took out the first 462 service, a well-laden short working to Fetcham.

RF28 RF315

I walked on round the parque. RT3871 was already in place to work on the red routes of the day: the 71 used to reach to Leatherhead garage as well as Chessington Zoo. MB90 was also set up for the 462, which was to be a featured route of the day, with workings to Cobham Village and Chertsey as well as the shorts to Fetcham.

RT3871 MB90

Three RFs were parked in a row, with red RF429 and London Country liveried RF644 also set up for the 462. But RF633, in traditional LT green, was set up for the 416, being worked today between Esher and Tadworth Station.

RF633 RF644 RF429

Sitting at the east end of the car-park were RF486 and STL441. Cobham Museum's "leaning-back" STL had been intended as a star performer, but a problem with the tyres when fully loaded had meant its replacement on the 65 route. RF486 wore blinds for the 71, but whether it would use them remained to be seen.

RF486 STL441

Over at the dolly stop the run-out was getting under way. In true Summer Sunday fashion red buses were well to the fore, even on the Country routes. RF406 was loading well for a foray up the 422 to the top of Box Hill, while RML2731 was heading for Epsom on the 408.

RML2731 on 408 RF406 on 422

I started to head for the west end of the tarmac. Leyland National SNB340 was scheduled to work the winding 432 route west to complement the 408, and RF679 had blinds set for a journey up onto the Downs to Tadworth Station.

SNB340 RF679

Now Greene Lane's Routemaster coach, RMC1469, stepped up to the stop. Was it going to Guildford as a Green Line journey? No: the blinds were altered, with a 408 insert replacing the Green Line via panel. It loaded well, and manoeuvred out of the gateway.

Experimental Daimler Fleetline XF3 arrived next, wearing blinds for a circular 428 route to Epsom.

RMC1469 on 408 XF3 arrives

P3, a Green Line Private Hire coach originally, and latterly Cobham's manual training vehicle before they sold it for private preservation, was waiting patiently down the far end, next to RT604.

Cobham's STL2377 arrived as a welcome replacement on the 65 for STL441. I wondered whether every male present over a certain age had had a Dinky model like this as a boy.

P3 STL2377 arrives

A fruity roar announced the arrival of Claire Green's RML2330, wearing 470 blinds. I asked if she had come in from Croydon on the 470, and whether she was going back that way. Yes. I arranged to meet up later for the return ride.

Also green, but in Green Line livery, came The London Bus Company's RT3228. I didn't ask whether they were going back as a 339, but thought forward to next weekend, when the bus would probably be working on that route, on the Epping Running Day.

RML2330 arrives on 470 RT3228 arrives

Now it was time to locate RF28, and head for Dorking..

Part 4: 713: Leatherhead and Dorking, RF28

All photos by Ian Smith. Click on most of them for a larger picture.

Back to Ian's Bus-stop Part 1 Part 2 Part 4: Leatherhead and Dorking