Bus News: December 2013

The 12th issue of Bus News. What a milestone! This is the last bus news post for this year. Sit back, relax and keep the tissues handy. This may be our last post of the year, so if it is, on behalf of the West London Bus Blogging Team, please have a healthy and happy new year!

Arriva London:
- Arriva's HV106 (Former LJ13 FCD, now LT63 UKJ) will enter service over the new year. Note that the "new" HV106 has a brand new body, brand new chassis. The "old" HV106, which never saw service caught on fire at the Wrightbus factory in Northern Ireland which destroyed the entire bus. Right now, HV106 is at Brixton (BN) for type training. It will move to route 29 shortly.

- Arriva's anticipated HV132-HV152 has finally arrived for route 319. It will enter service throughout the new year on destined route 319 although may see itself on route 159 as well.
S318 JAU/ 3221 seen about a week or two before withdrawal.

- Most of you would've heard about the Kennington Bus Crash on Friday 20th December. The Vehicle involved was Arriva's DW84 (LJ04 LFX) which was on route 59. DW84 has now been written off after hitting a tree which destroyed the front and parts of the side of the bus as well including the interior.

SN56 AXG/ 3804 before refurbishment, Summer 2013 at Harrow.

Arriva the Shires & Essex:
- ASE's only London operating garage, Garston (GR) have unfortunately lost route 640 to Metroline in the latest round of tenders. See Metroline panel below. The S-reg Darts have now all been withdrawn along with the Y-reg. The only ones left are 3804 and 3805 (SN56 AXG/H) which can mainly be seen on routes 303 and 305 nowadays. These two darts have been refurbished.
SN56 AXH/ 3805 on route 305, Kingsbury Circle.

Abellio London:
- Abellio have made quite a couple of gains this year, such as route E1 and 49, although have had to make some losses. It was already announced that they lost route 112 last month, and to assist that, they have also now lost route 100 to Go-Ahead London. 

Sullivan route 683 at the Jewish Free School.

Sullivan Buses:
- Jewish Free School route 683 has a journey withdrawn. PVR decreased to 2. It is likely that VLE40 (ELV7) will move to route 653.

- Jewish Free School route 653 now has a new journey. PVR increased to 2.

London United RATP Group:
- The new Optare MetroCity for route 391 at Stamford Brook (V) has yet to be delivered. The bus will instead come into service in 2014 alongside the existing Optare Versas, which have all been refurbished.

- New School Route 662 will start on the 20th January 2014. It will run between Surbiton Station and Holy Cross School using one double decker. The contract has been awarded to London United RATP Group, possibly from Tolworth (TV) using a spare bus or a bus off route 57. 

- As route 662 is introduced, route 665 is cut back to Berrylands Road. It will still use single deckers from London United.

- The Borismasters for route 148's conversion in February 2013 have already been delivered since late last month. 

- Another bus crash took place in Norbiton on Monday 23rd December, this time London United's TA314 (SN03 DZM) which was running light to/ from route 131. The bus went under a low railway bridge which resulted in the whole roof and upper deck being ripped off. The bus has now been written off.

Metroline Travel:
- A new route comes to Harrow Weald (HD) garage for the first time in several years. The last route lost is the same route coming back! The 640 makes a homecoming after spending 5 years at Arriva The Shires. Route 640 will use existing buses, and should be crosslinked with route 140. 640 will use either Volvos or possibly two Trident Enviros (Existing). Start date: When Bentleywood School new academic year starts in 2014.
Arriva the Shires 6101 on 640!

- The Metroline Gemini 3, the second prototype will be delivered soon, although what garage it will serve and what routes has not been revealed yet.

- Metroline VW1061 (LK60 AEF) has transferred to Perivale (PA) on Christmas Eve. This is a cover bus whilst a number of SEL's are being fixed as they are faulty (Also includes one VW). The bus entered service on route 79 between Edgware Station and Alperton, Sainsbury's with the traditional green blinds.

Go-Ahead Group:
- Go-Ahead London's first electric buses, and first electric buses anywhere in London have finally entered service on red arrow routes 507 and 521 at last. As of Christmas Day, the buses have only seen themselves on route 507 so far. A post on this has already come out.

- Go-Ahead London have made another gain: Route 100 from Abellio. The vehicles are already confirmed that they will be manufactured by Williams Hybrid Power (WHP), the same people who design Formula1 racing cars, and will also be hybrid.  
Next Borismaster Candidate.

Stagecoach London:
- Route 8 and N8 will convert to Borismaster Operation, with the contract retained by Stagecoach, on the 28th June 2014. Speculation has it that the vehicles will be delivered with typical Stagecoach fleetnumbers (Such as 12345) although I can assure you this is not true. Stagecoach will have the LT system used by all other companies.
That's all for this month, stay safe and enjoy!


  1. Hiya, I have a couple of questions: Are the new 319 HV buses Gemini 3? and is SEL763 one of the faulty SEL's and will it be back in service soon? It has been out of service for over a month and it is my favourite bus in London. No worries if you can't answer these. :-)

    1. In regards to the new buses on the 319, these are delayed Wright Eclipse Gemini 2 bodied Volvo B5L hybrids. I believe a different fleet code would have been provided if it was on the Wright Gemini 3 bodywork.

    2. Thanks for reading the post. In response to SEL763, that bus should be on the road soon, from what I know it is being checked for anymore faults. It is due to the cold snap that has affected the bus. I know how it feels to have your favourite bus off the road, when ADH45 is out of service! :P

  2. I hope more future new buses will be manufactured by Williams Hybrid Power.

    1. Me too. If Go-Ahead like these buses on route 100 (As this is a first for them and any operator in London), then these might be coming more in the future.

  3. Metrolines Gemini 3 has arrived at PA, labelled as VW2001 or VW*****

    1. VW2001 or VW1469? Noting that Metroline missed out numbers 1469-1506.

  4. If the 201 doesn't get a 2 year contract extension from next year to 2016, then it could get the same buses as the 100, manufactured by Williams Hybrid Power.

  5. Woodcock Graveyard3 January 2014 at 17:56

    London United's Optare Metrocity for the 391 was meant to be delivered in December 2013. I think it might delivered with Quality Line's Optare Metrocity's for the S1 in May 2014.

    1. Possibly. As far as I know it can be delivered either this month, or in February along with the batch for route S1. ;)

  6. Woodcock Graveyard3 January 2014 at 18:06

    If the 54 and 75 got Enviro 400 Hybrids then one of the fleet numbers of the buses would have been '12345'.

    1. I see that 12345 bus as a showbus for Stagecoach. Or Selkent at least!

    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

    3. 3rd reply - Actually, even if Plumstead and Catford got Enviro 400 Hybrids, it wouldn't reach 12345 sadly. Plumstead's ones are to be numbered 12154-12227 if I am correct, Although 12000 and 12221 will be part of the fleet.

  7. yoo guys u wud like to noe that the Tridents from BW will go to T when the 8 gets LT's all the 04 reg ones

  8. What happened to SEL746?

    1. It's back in service now, I have a picture somewhere. Dunno, it was out of service for about a year.