Prepared on Notepad by Ian Smith,
This page created 3rd March 2024.

Docklands Minibus

Docklands Minibus had previous experience with running bus routes for London Buses, but had relinquished these to Stagecoach London. It had got back into London work in March 2002 with the 167 (Loughton - Ilford) using Dart Nimbuses. But this is not their story. The company also had contract work, for which they leased three 8.5m Optare Solos in September 2002. Two wore straightforward white, one was in pink with a blue skirt. They had three-track roller number blinds, and worked the Beckton Tesco contract services BT1 and BT2. Appearances in the 167 were rare, arising from NBAs among the Darts.

They were returned off-lease to Dawson Rentals in June 2003. (Two found further employment on the other side of London, with Courtney Coaches of Bracknell, while the other went east to Norfolk Green.)

Shephall Express

We Care was the company name for a small operation at Stevenage, trading as the Shephall Express. They acquired a pair of 8.5m Solos in December 2002. They were nicely presented in red with gold "Shephall Express" emblazoned on the sides. They worked the SE1 (Stevenage - Shephall) and SE9 (Great Ashby - Stevenage - St Nicolas). They lasted six months.

Docklands Minibus

In June 2003 Docklands Minibus acquired the two from Shephall Express,. They assumed the Beckton Tesco services. They were given Docklands Minibus fleet livery of red with blue and white. They also stood in for Darts on the 167.

Later they worked the 549 tendered service (South Woodford Stn - Woodford - Roding Valley - Buckhurst Hill - Loughton Station).

In Ocober 2006 the bus operations of Docklands Minibus were taken over by Go-Ahead London. That included the 167 and the 549, but not the Optare Solos. They continued with the coaching rump, Doclands Coaches. They were eventually sold elsewhere.

Ian's Bus Stop Solo Index. Docklands Solos. Docklands Solo histories. Solo photos.