RT1499 at Bluewater

X80 Vintage Bus Running Day

Saturday 8th December 2007

Prepared by Ian Smith, 14th December 2007

Part Two: RT4421

Having alighted from RT1499 at Grays, I crossed the road towards stop no2. RT4412 was standing in the lay-by just up the road, windows clouded with condensation, awaiting its next turn. Going the other way was Dart 3403 of Arriva Southend (once with Limebourne), on the 388 to Basildon.

RT4421 at Grays 3403 on 388, Grays

First Essex 41647, a Dart with Marshall bodywork, earlier with London Buslines as DML647, passed through on a 200 to Lakeside.

41647 on 200 at Grays 41647 on 200, Grays

Then RT4421 roared into life, the lights came on, and Roger Wright brought the bus round onto the stop. We climbed aboard. Bliss! Heaters! I settled down for the ride through the murk to Lakeside, where I alighted to take more pictures.

RT4421 on X80 at Grays RT4421 on X80 at Grays RT4421 on X80 at Lakeside

RM298 hustled up, heading the other way, and completed its bus station stop first. It pulled out alongside the RT for a photo, then I scrambled back aboard the RT for us to follow the Routemaster round he roundabout and out of the bus station.

I went upstairs for the ride over the magnificent Queen Elizabeth Bridge, high over the Thames. Despite the murk the views were marvelous. We dipped down to the tolls on the western side, and scurried past Stone along to Greenhithe Station. After a quick pause there we were away again, down into Bluewater.

RM298 and RT4421 at Lakeside RT4421 at Bluewater

After the Bluewater stop I returned upstairs for the steamy ride east to Gravesend. This time we crossed High Speed One just as a Eurostar dived into the Thames Tunnel. The East Kent Regent passed us near Northfleet. We rumbled on into Gravesend, where we made the usual stops before heading off back to Bluewater, passing the green Cravens on the way.

Back at Bluewater I was in need of refreshment, so alighted. Having been on a steamy bus for some time, with no opprtunity for photography through the murky windows, I took some pictures: RT4421, Trident 17945 on the 96, and arriving RM298.

RT4421 at Bluewater again 17945 at Bluewater on 96 RM298 at Bluewater

The RT and the RM loaded up for their respective destinations and set off into the afternoon.

RM298 at Bluewater RM298 and RT4421 at Bluewater

I turned and set off into Marks and Spencers...

Part 3: PD3 and RLH61 in the dark

Back to Ian's Bus-stop Part 1 Part 2 Part 3