Grey-Green Scanias

This page created 3rd December 2007 by Ian Smith

The two coaches, 107-8, for commuters

Scania Grey-Green was a coaching company that had started London bus operations under tendering in 1986. But these two Scanias started with their coaching operations. They were a pair of Scania K92CRBs, two of only four given double-deck bodies. These were by East Lancs, of a similar style to those on Volvo or Dennis Dominators. Fitted with 75 coach seats, they were utilised on commuter services.

In July 1992 107 was in the national news for losing its top under Finsbury Park railway bridge. It was deemed young enough to repair, and emerged at the beginning of 1993 as a bus, in Grey-Green bus livery, It was sent to Dagenham, where it worked on the 179.

108 continued on the Medway towns commuter link, operating for a while from the Strood depot, then at the end of 1994 was also converted to bus format, repainted in bus livery, and sent to Barking for bus work.

Both buses were withdrawn in March 1997. 108 was quickly sold off for non-psv operations, and was enlisted in the Jesus Army. 107 was reinstated in July 1997 for the 66, and Arriva subsequently sent it north in November 1999 to Fox County at Loughborough, where it was used on a school run and training. It later moved on to PC Coaches in Lincoln.

109-114: buses for the East End

East Lancs Scania By 1988 Grey-Green was becoming well-established as a London bus operator. They had entered the bus tendering scene with some caution - it was new territory for everyone - and had initially used second-hand buses. Now it was time to improve the fleet's age profile. Events played a hand too, requiring fleet expansion, when a strike at London Country North-East led to their loss of some LRT tendered routes to Grey-Green (which had jumped in to work temporary services in the cut-throat commercial scene of the time). Six Scania N112DRB buses were ordered for delivery in February/March 1988, with fairly bland East Lancs bodywork. They were liveried in the Eastender style of bus livery: orange, off white and dark chocolate, with Grey-Green fleetnames.

They went into service at Barking, the first two onto the 125. There they joined a Scania demonstrator, E200WHS, which was loaned for three weeks and operated the 125 in the blue and white livery of A1 Service, where it went after the loan. The other four arrived in March, and the six worked mainly on the 125 and the 173, displacing Fleetlines onto the 298 and 313 (routes taken over from LCNE).

125Winchmore Hill - Finchley Central
173Stratford - Becontree Heath

They seem to have been little photographed, either in their time at the Grey-Green garage at Barking, or after their move in November 1996 to the Grey-Green depot at Stamford Hill. They did acquire the later Grey-Green livery.

After almost three years at Stamford Hill they were transferred away to Arriva's subsidiary at Stevenson's Uttoxeter in August 1999.

The Route 24 buses: 159-161, 178-183

Route 24 Scania Route 24 was Grey-Green's flagship route - the one which took the Grey-Green buses down Whitehall and past the Houses of Parliament. It had been blessed with new Volvos when they took over the route from London Buses (no secondhand municipal hand-downs for this route so publicly displaying the virtues of private receipt of public monies). So it was decided to maintain the image by frequent updates of the buses on the route.

Three Scania N113s with Northern Counties Palatine bodies were bought in May 1994, another three in February 1995 and a final three in March 1996. They enabled the original Volvos on the route to spread their wings and do other things. The Route 24 Scanias formally came into the Arriva London North-East fold in January 1998, and began to acquire the Arriva cow-horns livery. They continued to work from the Rookwood Road garage in Stamford Hill until it closed in March 2000, when they were all moved to Tottenham garage. This occasioned an official change of ownership to Arriva London North, and the addition of S prefixes to the fleetmumbers.

They were all dispatched north to Arriva in Northumberland in December 2002 or March 2003, following the loss of route 24 to Metroline in November 2002.

S180 on 24, December 1998 S179 on 24, February 2001

Route 24 was the normal location for the tall Scanias: freshly-painted S180 approaches Trafalgar Square in December 1998, whilst a slightly more tired looking S179 is approaching Hampstead Heath in February 2001.

Bus Stop Kentish Bush bus histories photo refs BTS