Services are now returning to a more normal state. In the issue I have tried to give you a feeling of the current situation using the help of contributors pictures.

Thanks to Paul Bateson we have a couple of interesting pictures from Brampton, Canada. There also some pictures dating back some years such as RTs from Gavin Francis.

Also details of the new double deck fleet for Oxford Bus and Thames Travel, one heralding a new livery!

Also increases in seating capacity reflecting the social distance changes are happening throughout our area.

One of our regular contributors is Jack Cooper and I feel I must comment on developing ability to take some very nice photographs which include much of the scenery around. I give as an example the picture below.

Gold 15761 is but a part of this picture but does blend so nicely with the scenery around!
It would lend itself to a puzzle for Christmas. Well done Jack. 

Just in time for this issue was a picture of Oxford's 901 from Phil Southall. It looks very smart. The finished article can be seen under the Oxford Bus heading below.

On a more personal note I wish our man north of the border, Gordon Scott, good wishes for his wife who is in hospital, the reason why there are no pictures this week.

I promised some interesting pictures showing recent "Covid" developments.

The Eden Bus Station in High Wycombe has introduced this "MASKEY" vending machine, so no excuse for not wearing a mask when travelling!
Picture by Gavin Francis taken on July 14th.

The picture below taken by Gavin Francis shows the poster advising "we're back!"

From this coming Saturday seating is increased to 37 on the tube enabling further improvement on the loads carried.

This morning, July 17th, I received a picture from Phil Rumsby a long time customer of the tube taken at Thornhill. It is 50263 on the 1040 to London when it appeared that the service was "COACH FULL" so at last things seem to be picking up.

"COACH FULL" at Thornhill - 50263 on July 17th at 1040.

Also within the Stagecoach family is this picture of an MMC on route 1 at the train station.

It is good to have even a partial display of social distancing measures. Taken on July 16th by Jack Cooper. 

The pictures below from Mark Wakefield show the social distancing and hand sanitisers used by the company.

Taken on July 12th by Mark Wakefield.

One more picture of the increased seating pitch now on megabus.
This has drawn quite some praise from customers who enjoy the space and thoughtfulness of megabus! 


Gavin Francis took a trip to East London over the past week and his pictures are to be found under the London area at the bottom of the page. He normally uses Ruislip to park his car and take the Metropolitan from there. His pictures show the near empty station car park with a solitary Metroline single deck seemingly acting as a rest room.

Ruislip station car park on July 13th with Metroline DEL2164 parked up. 

From Dr Martin Isles

Thanks for the piece in the latest OCBP


The best plans of mice and men…

No sooner had I released the news that Oxford CC’s closure of the A40 at Tetsworth the week before came to light!

It’s an ill wind…

The flyby will now follow the signposted diversion along the A329 but rather than follow the ring road to the north, call into the centre of Thame and stop by the historic town hall in both directions instead of Tetsworth southbound and Milton Common northbound.  A much better location for enthusiasts to observe from with local facilities on hand and picturesque.

Kinky Mike writes with some history pertaining to the 853 Oxford-Cheltenham service.

In 1951 through rail bookings were available to and from Reading and Paddington (at least) and the timetable appeared in the Western Region public book.

According to Wikipedia the GWR started the route in 1928 and Bristol Tramways took it over in 1932. Overall time was around two hours in both 1939 and 1951, but the best rail connections via Kingham took only one hour 45 minutes in 1951.

Coaches in 1951 stopped at the up side approach road and continued to "Country Bus Station" (was that Gloucester Green?), but started from the Down Approach Road and called at the bus station. Connections out of trains weren't brilliant. 

An interesting collection of pictures from the past for this week's issue which I hope readers will enjoy.

Simon Caygill

That picture of a Heyfordian coach on your page looks very much like a Tappins N171 to N180 unique wheel trim at front ? Anyone have an comments on this post from Simon ?

Gavin Francis visited Dagenham Heath and Barking this week and sent two pictures taken many moons ago of RTs working this area.

RT 2642 working the 139 on July 20th 1977 !

RT 4126 again at Dagenham Heathway working a 148 service back in July 1977 again on the 20th of that year.

Gavin also writes:

Still thinking about that picture of MW 17 at Arriva Wycombe.
I know I took the picture at Cressex depot. Ed.

Looked at its history on Ian's Bus Page and it shows it at Centrewest Uxbridge but not at Wycombe :

W 17   LDZ 9017  7/92    new to London Buses: Mercedes Benz 811D, Wright B26F
                  7/92 WH (West Ham)
                  8/92 GB transfer (Victoria Basement)
                  3/93 UX transfer (Uxbridge)
                       UX used on U1, U2
                  3/94 G  transfer (Greenford)
                  9/94    privatised to Centrewest
                  2/95 ON transfer (Alperton) 
                  9/98    bought by Roberts, Rhandir, North Wales
       A20 WTR    1/99    reregistered 
       J656 REY   3/01    reregistered
                  4/01    sold to Perry (Bromyard)
                  4/02    bought by Dukes Travel, Coleford, Gloucestershire
                  6/04    bought by T.R.Ward, Devauden, S.Wales
                 11/04    with Brue Travel, Bruton, Somerset
              by 12/05    bought by Wessex Bus, Weymouth

Has anyone any further thoughts and pictures of this bus?

That cycle track along Park Lane by Phil Rumsby

Readers will, I hope, remember my comments on the new cycle track along Park Lane and the changes caused to the northbound bus and coach stops.

Phil Rumsby writes to add his comments and some pictures which speak for themselves.

"I wondered if you had seen the new set up at Marble Arch by the Oxford bound Tube stop? There now a two way cycle lane between the bus shelter and the bus stop as you can see in the third picture. I think is an accident waiting to happen as passengers suddenly see the coach coming and dash across the cycle lane, forgetting to look to the left and not spotting any cyclists riding up Park lane in the ‘wrong’ direction. There are crossings marked across the cycle lane but they are in between the shelters! 

The other result of this is that a bus stand has been created at the end of Park Lane and the TFL buses often back up and block the Tube stop as can be seen in the photographs, where all the buses shown are ‘on stand’ with their engines off. At least twice this week the coach has had to block one of the two live lanes of traffic in Park Lane in order to load."   

The bus stop shown in the two pictures is the one for the Tube, stop 14.

I still don’t consider myself elderly and I have come close to stepping out across the cycle lane without looking! It is not natural to look to the left in what has up to now had all the traffic in one direction. Local buses blocking the stop is also a problem.

Now I expect if you are a cyclist you may not agree that this is a "nasty" waiting to happen but Phil provides an users point of view.

What do other people think?  Do let me know. 

From Paul Bateson in Canada.

Tuesday afternoon, July 14th, in Bramalea and a short walk from home to catch up with Brampton Transit.

The seating capacity has been increased to a full seated load – 55 on an articulated bus and 35 on a 40 foot bus.  No standing passengers permitted.

The oldest buses in the Brampton Transit fleet are the New Flyer D40LF from 2003 and 2004. I appears as though the 2002 series have been withdrawn.

Parked out of service on Central Park Drive on Tuesday, July 14th were 0309 and 0419.

July 15th

Another afternoon visit to the Bramalea area and today’s surprise was the partial closure of the Bramalea Terminal to replace part of the roadway.  Consequently routes 1, 1A, 15 (N & S) and 18 (N & S) had temporary bus stops along Team Canada Drive. 

Great for photography as I did not have to attempt capturing buses on the move.

Another reason for going out this afternoon was to photograph the next highest New Flyer XDE60 to enter service.

Fleet number 2080 on route 15.

So, there is plenty of investment across the sea in Canada !


Fleet news and developments

Some local pictures now from Gavin Francis.

High Wycombe

Variety in The Eden Bus Station on July 14th, 2495, 2992 and 3539.

New arrival are 3569 and 3570 both of whose destinations have stuck on BUS REVERSING ! Quite bizarre really !

Here is 3570 in a picture from Gavin taken on April 30th 2010 when in Milton Keynes.

Ex London Wrights decker variety working the 300 service to Aylesbury.

A really odd one from Southern Counties is 6403, an ALX400, last found working in The Medway Towns.
New in 2004 this is one the elderly fleet employed in the area by Arriva.

Something of a mystery is the return of the MCV Evolution - YJ60GGO - seen working the 32 in Bridge Street.
As far as I am aware this is a loan vehicle from the Arriva bus dealership.

From Tony Bungay

Optare 3742, Citaro 3892 and Wrights 3770 and 3788 were all caught in Hatfield Town Centre yesterday July 15th.
3770 sporting branding for a local Hemel Hempstead service.
The Service number 302 being no stranger to Hemel, though prior to 1986 it run along a completely different road,
as did the route it partnered 301, and again with whom it partners now,

3892 operating what is probably the only remaining traditional style Green Line service the 724, In its original form the 724 actually worked to High Wycombe initially and for some what longer Romford in the other direction.
Now what appears to be the only homage to Green Line in its 90 year is a couple of green flashes on the side.

I have some pictures from  Tony on hold regarding the 90th Anniversary of Green Line. I'll use them soon!

Optare Versa 4230 was caught on the 150 to Milton Keynes, in Aylesbury Town Centre today, July 16th.
It appears that Aylesbury is once again working this service at present.

Lastly Enviro 400 5464 again in Aylesbury Town Centre, heading back to its garage
having presumably worked a 280 journey, sporting an interesting message in it’s destination box!
Maybe we've all lost some months and it is now November!!

Gary Seamarks provided an interesting picture. 

E200MMC 3125 is seen near Bedford with a Rail Replacement service on July 11th.

Arriva 7100 working the 755 to Luton on July 15th by Gavin Francis. Note the odd fleet number in the window!

Adam Green visited Watford on July10th.

40008 seen in Watford. 

An unusual performer working the X74 is Volvo Hybrid 69929 on July 14th. I hope no one though it was going to Heathrow?
Picture by Gavin Francis.

Wycombe still has 214 though it never shows on www.bustimes.org for the company.

Here it is seen art the depot on July 13th by Malcolm Crowe.

A few pictures from Gavin Francis now taken in The Eden Bus Station on July 14th.

Scania 215 is seen  working the 101 to Uxbridge.

StreetLites 405 and 406 are seen with 8 and 36 workings respectively.

Often employed working Link40 to Thames on this it is unusually working the 27 - generally a double deck.

Here 876 is seen working the 36 followed by 878 working the 40 instead of an M A N E200 like 420 above. 

Main news this week is the arrival of the first StreetDeck for the Bicester workings reported by Phil Southall and Peverel.

First a note regarding the allocations and registrations. These are not as originally thought.














































Although unregistered I believe this to be 901. OBC via Phil Southall. This one has a city logo on the dash panel.

Again I am not sure if this is the one above but both were taken on July 14th, this one by Peverel on the A34.

Late news from Phil Southall OBC 901 is now fully branded on July 17th.

Pictures from Daniel Harwood

660 and 668 both seen in the Botley Road on July 11th. 

Pictures from Jack Cooper taken on July 16th.

Oxford Pride 367 with an X13 road service whilst behind is Thames Travel 914.

Microhybrid 374 is back on the U1 when seen here in High Street. Mileage must be low on these buses as they been off for some months.

Wright StreetDeck 652 on its branded city 5 at the train station.

Wright StreetDeck 666 with a 500 service in Woodstock.

Now some nice pictures of new StreetDeck 904 provided by Oxford Bus via Phil Southall.

These buses have yet to enter service.
A useful comparison can be gained from the picture below of 622.

Pictures from Daniel Harwood on July 10th

E400 226 in Greenwood Way, Didcot with a 98 working.

StreetDeck 622 is seen in Wantage with a service 67 to Faringdon.

Pictures from Gavin Francis in High Wycombe

One of two buses painted in this livery for the 321 by Redline. Picture 2 is by Malcolm Crowe.
They still retain the dual doors and the other bus is YX10FEG.

I don't think we have had a picture of this bus before as it does not come into The Eden Bus Station very often.
YX65RGV was purchased for the bucks new university service in 2005.

Pictures from Gavin Francis in High Wycombe

Now I'm almost certain that E10RRT has not operated the 275 previously but I maybe wrong?

Jim Wright

Rotala buses on 250, I've seen three different StreetLites SM19KKO,KKP,KKS. 

The first bus, new and in the latest livery, 37630, has yet to enter service on the 505 Bicester service.

Pictures from Daniel Harwood on July 11th

Gold MMC 10780 seen running along the Botley Road with a n S9 working to Wantage.

MMC 11237 is also seen on Botley Road with an S1 service to Carterton.

MMC 11242 seen heading for Witney along the Botley Road.

MMC 11242 seen heading for Witney along the Botley Road. These later buses lack any branding, I wonder why? 

Pictures from Jack Cooper taken on July 16th.

Gold MMC 10780 with an S8 working passing Lodge Hill on July 15th.

Gold MMC 10786 passes through Woodstock with an S3 service on its way to Chipping Norton.

Solo SR 47841 with a 233 service to Burford ready to leave Woodstock.

From Jim Wright

Several questions have been asked about 15533, long withdrawn at Oxford but still around having never gone where forecast.

Here it is at Horspath on July 14th seemingly waiting for transfer, maybe to Cumbria & North West who have expressed an interest.
I hope someone fixes the flat tyre prior to any move!!!

James Freeman advises of a video he has posted relating to the X5 service which may interest readers. The link is below:


Gary Seamarks writes "July 11th from Luton, large rail replacement nothing running North , scheduled engineering works, East Midlands Rail coach as far as Market Harborough (today) and Loughborough (Sunday) using coaches, with no Thameslink service either to Bedford with buses and coaches in use from Arriva, Centrebus, Barton Coach Co, UNO, Weberbus and plenty more. Add to that the Busway Volvos on the 99, sadly did not hear one passenger jet depart the airport in 4 hours ! "

Well travelled Phil Southall provided a picture from Kings Lynn.

Ex Witney 15618 seen in Kings Lynn on July 11th by Phil Southall.

Gary Seamarks has provided some interesting pictures from Skegness.

Skegness on July 1st, sadly then an open-top free zone and very limited what was running, all are phone shots,

Wrights 16944 working the 59 in Skegness.

E400s 19207 and 19209 in Skegness.

Wrights 21213 and 21214 show that this fleet still has some older buses.

Dennis Dart SLF / Alexander Dennis Pointer. This was new to Grimsby Cleethorpes in September 2006.  

Pictures from Daniel Harwood on July 11th

Gold MMC 10991 seen heading for Swindon along the Botley Road.

Gold MMC 10992 again seen heading for Swindon along the Botley Road.

From Jim Wright

Training bus 20940 was at Oxford on July 14th when pictured. I wonder if it is on loan to Oxfordshire?

From Graham Welford

The recently published timetable for the 853 under Stagecoach West operation.

Gavin Francis has recorded the ex megabus Astromegas which are still off road at Oxford.

There also a few 14 plate coaches not in use. All seen on July 15th.

Jack Cooper

50279 is seen heading for Gloucester Green on July 16th by Jack Cooper who was in High Street.

Several comments and pictures may be found under the Covid-19 heading above.

Smaller operators and London developments

More on the 853 service from Hugh Jaeger

On Monday 13 July Swanbrook resumed service on route 853, which it had suspended from 28 March due to the covid-19 pandemic.
I photographed the very first coach from Gloucester to Oxford for 15 weeks.

I took the photo in the early morning sunshine just after 0730 hrs on Monday morning. The coach is heading east along East End in the town of Northleach in Gloucestershire. 

In the background is the tower of the Perpendicular Gothic parish church of SS Peter and Paul. The tower was built about AD 1400 and has a ring of eight bells, five of which were cast in 1700.

Adam Green visits Watford on July 10th


Barnett's Coaches Irizar BA15NET and BA18NET at Watford with NHS special services. 

Gavin Francis

One wondered what the recovery truck was doing in The Eden Bus Station on July 14th?


Gavin Francis visited Dagenham Heath and Barking on July 13th and below are some of the pictures he took.

Dagenham Heath

Two buses serving the 145 route in Heathway. The older one looks rather tatty!


A now elderly E400 T79 working the 173 route which is due to pass to Stagecoach in October of this year.

The LTs in use with East London Buses are interesting to see, carrying as they do, a branded livery for EL services.

These LTs are some of the very last of the type to enter service.

Many thanks to Gavin for a few off our beaten track! 

Adam Green visits Heathrow on July 10th

A variety of single decks at Hatton Cross.

E400, now elderly 9406 is seen working a 285 service at Heathrow Central.

Go Ahead London WVL334 seen at Hatton Cross working the X26 to West Croydon on July 10th.

Citaro MCL30305 with a 203 service at Hatton Cross - BUS FULL. I seem to remember that this route was the haunt of early Leyland Nationals.

SP40021 in white on Driver Training.

VW45364 with a 105 service at Heathrow Central.

E200 DE15989 working the A10 at Heathrow Central.

Well, shows how long it is since I worked at Heathrow, here is VWH2240 with an x140 to Harrow.