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This page created 17th September 2021.

Metroline's Trident Presidents: TP, TPL

an introduction

Metroline operated in the north-west quadrant of the Transport for London area. Before the Tridents came along it operated a large fleet of M-type Metrobuses, plus a sizable fleet of RML Routemasters on its trunk routes into London. In 1999 it started its low-floor double-decker changeover with 9.9m Trident chassis, hedging its bets body-wise with 65 Plaxton Presidents (TP) and 52 Alexander ALX400s (TA). These had full-height bodywork, unlike the Stagecoach TAs.

Metroline TP

TP: Dennis Trident/President: TP1-65

The Presidents were numbered into Metroline's new double-deckers list of whatever type. The first batch were TP1-TP31, in March-June 1999. They were mid-staircase 9.9m Presidents, painted in Metroline's house colours of red with a deep blue skirt and white cheat line. They went straight to work on route 43, based on Holloway Garage (Metroline London Northern). The second batch (TP31-65), following on in August 1999, were for route 17 , also from Holloway. Livery was the same.

In 2001 they settled on routes 17, 134 and W7, with the 10 on Sundays. The 43 was worked by the newer VPLs.

No Route Garage
43 Friern Barnet - Muswell Hill Broadway - Liverpool Street - Finsbury Square Bridge Station HT
17 Archway Station - Kings Cross - London Bridge StnHT
134 North Finchley - Friern Barnet - Muswell Hill Bdy - Highgate - Archway - Kentish Town - Warren Street - Tottenham Court RoadHT
W7 Muswell Hill Bdy - Crouch End - Crouch Hill - Finsbury ParkHT
10 (Sundays): Archway Station - York Way - Kings Cross - Euston - Tottenham Court Road - Marble Arch - Hyde Pk Cnr - Kensington High St - HammersmithHT

TP 7 on 17, KX, April 2003 TP32 on 17 to London Bridge

TP7 circumnavigates Kings Cross on its way to Archway Stn, April 2003. Holloway's TP32 also on the 17, heads south for London Bridge Stn.

TP18 on 134 to Tottenham Court Road

TP18 on 134 to Tottenham Court Road, May 2005, with lower blue skirt.

Metroline's next Tridents were ALX400-bodied. TA66 - TA117 were also 9.9m long. TAL118-134 were longer.

Then Metroline shifted to long Volvo-powered Presidents, VPL135-236.

Metroline TP

Longer Tridents: TPL237-TPL296

So it was February 2002 before the next President-bodied Tridents arrived. These were 10.5m long They were similar to the 9.9m standard model, but with an extra 0.6m (2foot) bay inserted in front of the doorway, and the staircase moved forward to behind the cab, raising the capacity to 69 (H45/24D). The first eighteen went to Harrow Weald for the 140 and N140. Potters Bar then took fifteen, adding them to the mix on routes 82, 84, 317 and less often, at first, the 217, 231 and 242, some of which were normally worked by single-deckers. Five more arrived at Potters Bar in May to displace VPLs to North Wembley. Potters Bar's Scanias got a new lease of life.

No Route Garage
140 / N140 Heathrow Airport - Hayes & Harlington - Yeading -Northolt - Harrow - Harrow Weald HD

No Route Garage
82 Victoria - Marble Arch - Baker Street - Swiss Cottage - Golders Green - Finchley Central - North Finchley PB
84 St Albans - London Colney - South Mimms - New Barnet StnPB
317 Waltham Cross - Enfield TownPB
217 Turnpike Lane Stn - Waltham CrossPB
231 Turnpike Lane Stn - Enfield Town - Enfield Chase StnPB
242 Waltham Cross - Potters Bar StnPB
182 Harrow Weald - Sudbury - Wembley - Neasden - Brent CrossHD
186 Northwick Park Hosp - Harrow - Canons Park - Edfware - Mill Hill Cross - Hendion Central - Brent CrossStnHD

TPL239 on 140 TPL243 on 43 to Friern Barnet

"TPL239 on 140 to Harrow Weald, April 2004. Holloway's TPL243 on 43 to Friern Barnet, October 2005.

C2 goes double-deck

In February 2002 Holloway converted route C2 from DLD Darts to short TPs.

Holloway received the next tranche of 10.5m TPLs (TPL275-296) in May 2002.

TPL291 on 134 TPL274 on 84 to New Barnet Stn

Holloway's TPL291 on 134 to Tottenham Crt Rd Stn. Potters Bar's TPL274 on 84 to New Barnet Stn, showing the new light clusters on the rear (and the later shorter skirt).

TPs for 205: TP297-316

Twenty 9.9m TPs (297-316) arrived in August 2002 for the Stationlink replacement service 205. These short Tridents had reduced seating capacity (H39/21D), allowing for wheelchair space and luggage space. They differed from the early TPs in having a forward staircase, gasket glazing and revised rear light clusters. They were put into Willesden Garage to start the service in August, but were transferred to the intended garage at Perivale in November.

Metroline TP TPL349 on 205 to Paddington

Perivale's TP349 passes King's Cross on a 205 to Paddington, September 2007.

No Route Garage
C2 Parliament Hill Field - Camden - Oxford Circus HT
205 Whitechapel - Aldgate - Liverpool Street - Old Street - King's Cross - Euston - Marylebone - PaddingtonW/PV

Part 2: 2003.

Ian's Bus Stop Trident Index. TP, TPL text. Metroline Trident histories. photo refs.