Part of the line-up, Ash Grove


Saturday 12th April 2014

Prepared on Wordpad by Ian Smith, 17th April 2014

Part 2: A Road Run towards Brooklands

Ash Grove to Putney Bridge Station: RT3254

Gradually buses gained crews for the start of the road run to Brooklands. RT113, with a driver in an immaculate white summer jacket, headed out, followed by a tail of others. RTW185 looked excellent too.

RT113, Ash Grove RTW185, Ash Grove

I climbed aboard RT3254 (by invitation), and took a seat upstairs at the front, in time to watch the exodus continue, following RT113. RT3183 pulled out from beside us, followed by RLH48.

RT3183 leaves Ash Grove

We had to wait while incoming RTW75 reversed into the line.

RLH48 leaves Ash Grove RTW75 reverses, Ash Grove

By the time we emerged onto Mare Street the preceding buses had disappeared. But we headed south, then west to join the main 22 route at Shoreditch High Street. We dived down into the City. RTW467 growled past near Liverpool Street Station on its way to Shoreditch Church. Another of the East Lancs Scanias, ELS10, passed by at Liverpool Street Station. (Why do I always see one here?)

RTW467 near Liverpool Street ELS10 on 42, Liverpool Street Stn

We squeezed through Threadneedle Street to Bank, but then diverted off the 22 route (we were not wearing 22 blinds, after all), and dived down onto the Victoria Embankment, familar to our London Bus Company driver. At the tourist bus stop by Embankment Station we passed an open-top doored RML - RML2621 I think. We continued along to Westminster Bridge, where we turned right.

RML2621 at Embankment Big Ben

Our driver avoided Victoria Street and the worst of the traffic jams around Victoria, using mainly back-streets to work a way through, past Buckingham Palace, Grosvenor Gardens and Eaton Square to rejoin the 22 route in Sloane Square.

Abellio 9412 on 211 at Victoria DW89 on 319 at Sloane Square

Our first sighting of a current 22 bus was of Wright Volvo WVL502 at Sloane Square. It appered to have just terminated short, being empty and wearing Putney Common blinds. The trend towards hybrid buses was illustrated by WHV17 on route 19.

WVL502 on 22 at Sloane Square WHV17 on 19 at Sloane Square

Down the Kings Road we came up behind WVL507 on the 22. Coming the other way were several Borismasters on the 11, including LT50. These always remind me of the Xylons in Battlestar Galactica.

WVL502 on 22 at Sloane Square WHV17 on 19 at Sloane Square

Suddenly we were at Putney Bridge. We pulled in - not to the narrow and busy bus-race past the station, but enough to change drivers, and for me to alight. Chris pulled away over the bridge towards Brooklands, and I headed for the District Line at Putney Bridge Station.

RT3254 and E134 at Putney Bridge RT3254 at Putney Bridge

Part 5: Brooklands: the RT Gathering

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

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