RF486 at Crouch End

Routes 212 and 233 Revisited by RF

Sunday 17th February 2013

Prepared by Ian Smith, 20th February 2013.

W7: Finsbury Park to Muswell Hill Broadway: VW1375

I misread the instructions. It just shows the power of images compared with words. I arrived at Finsbury Park Station at 1015, and promptly caught a W7 up to Muswell Hill Broadway, where I mistakenly thought the event commenced. My vehicle was VW1375, a Wright-bodied Volvo B9TL new to Metroline as recently as October 2012. I took a seat upstairs at the front, and we were away. We turned up Stroud Green Road. Here came more double-deckers, Metroline's EnviroTrident TE984 on the 210, and VW1267 on the W7, both heading for the terminus at Finsbury Park.

VW1375 on W7, Finsbury Park TE984 on 210, VW1267 on W7, Finsbury Park

We passed over Crouch Hill Station on the Gospel Oak-Barking Line. One of the newish Class 172 purred away westwards. (These are probably the last diesel units to be built in Britain before oil gets too expensive to burn: no banker in his right mind would fund a forty-year asset dependent on diesel fuel - oops, I forgot the upcoming order for Sub-Express Trains to replace the HSTs, ordered by the government.) We climbed over Crouch Hill to reach Crouch End, where we crossed over the A103 into Park Road. Sister bus VW1376 went past us at a stop, and we followed it along the narrow tree-lined road, which is just too narrow for two rows of parked cars and two streams of traffic. We met VW1290 coming the other way on the W7. We turned up Muswell Hill, and climbed up to reach our objective of Muswell Hill Broadway, with its circular bus stand in the middle of the roundabout.

VW1376, VW1290 on W7 VW1375 on W7, Muswell Hill

W7: Muswell Hill Broadway to Finsbury Park: VW1375

I alighted before the bus moved onto the central stand. NOW I read my instructions. Ah! I needed to be at Finsbury Park by 1130. It was only 1034. I had plenty of time. I crossed the road and looked for a southbound stop. I spotted one just down the hill, by the bridge over the old Alexandra Palace railway (now a lovely walk with amazing views).

Arriva's VLW55 rolled down the hill from the stand with a 144 for Edmonton Green, followed quite soon by VW1375 (naturally). I boarded again, and resumed my front seat upstairs. The return journey was into the sun, which made photography difficult. We passed VW1287 on Park Road.

VLW55 on 144, Muswell Hill VW1287 on W7, Park Road

At Crouch End we passed EnviroTrident TE685 reaching the end of its journey from Trafalgar Square on the 91, and forked left to pass over Crouch Hill. Another Overground Class 172 was in Crouch Hill Station. At the bottom of the hill we passed the amazing wall of the old dairy, and turned down Stroud Green Road towards Finsbury Park. We had to go round the terminal loop via Lennox Road into Clifton Terrace to reach the alighting stop.

TE685 on 91, Crouch End VW1375 on W7, Finsbury Park

It still was not yet 1100, but there was already a group gathering in Wells Terrace (the bus station) to watch for RF486. The bus station was busy, with buses continually arriving and leaving on the 210, W3 and W7.

Finsbury Park: TE1095 on 210, T211 on W3, VW1290 on W7

Part Two: RF486 on 212

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

Red-RF Ian's Bus-stop 1 2 3 4