Apart from Colin's bus, RF679, I think we were the last departure. We headed through Gravesend, and along the road through Northfleet. I had a front upstairs seat again, enjoying the evening views over the river.
In Northfleet we met 3755 again, still scurrying back and forth on the 490.
Then we were away, round the one-way system and past the station, where 3762 was on the next 490 towards Gravesend. We climbed up out of the town, and counter-intuitively forked right, along the 423 route. This took us to trhe slip road for the Dartford Tunnel Approach, and we turned north, soon to dive into the tunnel under the Thames.
On the north side we negotiated the tangled wilderness: a tangle of power lines, railway lines, High Speed One, motorways and industry. We rounded a roundabout and headed in to the Lakeside shopping pit, the north-side equivalent of Bluewater. We visited the bus station, then headed out for Grays. East Thames EnviroDart 36042 balanced us round the Lakeside roundabout, and we headed east. There were other buses: Southend's Dart SLF 3278 headed past us towards Lakeside, and a red Arriva EnviroDart sneaked past too quickly for me to snap it.
But soon we were at Grays Station. The passengers alighted.
I headed for the station and a train to Fenchurch Street. It had been a good day.
Thanks to the organisers, especially Colin Rivers, and to Gravesham Council, the Police and the bus companies for the necessary permissions. Thanks too to the owners, drivers and crews who provided buses and entertained the crowds. Thanks to those who produced a timetable and a programme, and to those who spent their time selling programmes and answering queries. Without them too it would not happen.
Buses in service:
RF28, RF406*, RF489*, RF679
RMC4, RMC1500, RML2589*, DMS 1868*
Photos by Ian Smith. Click on any of them for a larger picture.
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