Brooklands Bus Running Day
Sunday 23rd October 2011
Prepared by Ian Smith, 25th October 2011
RoutemastersAway from the golden oldies, towards the new Cobham tent, was a collection of Routemasters. Two of the original short variety were RM1955 and RM752, the latter open-topped by London Transport for the Round London Sightseeing Tours.
Behind them, under the trees, lurked one of the early long variety, RML898, intended for replacing similar-sized trolleybuses but meeting union opposition for unrewarded productivity increases. More of the long variety were lined up, with a shining RML2440 in Country green, RML2272 in Central red, short RM2216 in show-bus 1933-style livery, and RML2412 in London Country green and yellow.
RM1000 was there, as was RMC1476 in NBC green and white. RM140 was an earlier one, but RM8, strangely was one of both the first and last: first to be built, last into service, as for many years it was the Chiswick test bus, before finally going to Sidcup.
Standing in front of Concorde were prototypes RM1 - the very first - and unique Leyland-engined Weymann-bodied RML3.
I was about to visit the Cobham tent when, dare I say it, something more interesting, and certainly more transient, came along, in the shape of RF146 departing on a 462 trip to Addlestone. Being one who prefers my buses active rather than stuffed, I asked if I could join them..
462: Weybridge (Vickers Works) - Addlestone Garage, RF146
We loaded up at the dolly stop, made our turn, and threaded our way out along the narrow road past the Mercedes_Benz emporium, onto the Byfleet road. We turned left, as though to head for Cobham, then turned left again at the roundabout to climb up towards Weybridge Station. At the roundabout there we turned half-right onto Hanger Hill. That took us down through the woods to the double roundabout at the east end of Weybridge. We turned left down into Weybridge High Street, then right along Balfour Road towards Addlestone. There we trundled along Station Road and over the level crossing, and on along to the old Addlestone Garage site (long ago built on) and on to the stop just beyond the roundabout. There we paused for photos.
To turn for the return journey we had to go half-way to Chertsey to find a roundabout, turning right along Addlestone High Street and driving out of the village. After rounding the big roundabout we returned towards Addlestone, meeting first T792, then RLH48, then RF600 on successive 462s to various destinations. Photographing them as they passed was just a matter of luck - or not.
Back on Station Road we saw the lights flash and the barriers go down at the level crossing. After a few minutes an eastbound electric train headed for Woking. The barriers stayed down. After a few minutes more a westbound electric train crossed over into the station. The barriers stayed down. After a while a 66 rumbled across eastbounds with a track maintenance train of track and ballast. The barriers went up. We headed back to Weybridge, then up to Weybridge Station, passing red RLH23 on the 462 as we went. We continued round to Brooklands, where we pulled up behind RF366, which was loading up...
All photos by Ian Smith. Click on any of them for a larger picture.