Charlton staff buses

Page last updated 13 March 2016


One of the first staff buses to serve Charlton Works was STL2669, one of the 'unfrozen STLs' built in wartime.  It was converted in 1955 to towing lorry 1017J and lasted until 1965.  It is seen here in 1965.

Photo © Peter Osborn


Charlton Works in Felltram Road (not to be confused  with the Cohen breakers yard in Penhall Road) was to the Tram & Trolleybus Department what Chiswick and Aldenham were to the Central Bus Department.  From its beginnings as a horse tram works, Charlton repaired and overhauled trams and trolleybuses; the last trolleybus was overhauled in 1959.


Before the post-war replacement of trams by buses, there were three staff trams to bring workers in to Charlton. As the tram-to-bus conversions occurred, so the trams were replaced by buses, until after 5 Jul 52 there were three staff buses.  These were STLs 2668, 2669 and 2675. These remained in use until they were replaced by pre-war STLs with pre-selector gear boxes. Eventually RT2s were used until closure.


Meanwhile from about the mid-1950s, as Charlton was being run down, staff were being used to fill vacancies at Fulwell.  A staff bus was provided to convey staff involved to FW.  It appears that 10T10 T697, based at Plumstead, was used from 7 Mar 55 to 31 Jan 57, when replaced by post-war T785 until it suffered an accident at Fulwell on 28 Jun 57.  It was replaced the following Monday by T781.  This continued in use as a staff bus (at Plumstead, then Abbey Wood with a spell at New Cross) until 30 Sep 62, when T787 took over, but by then the trolleybuses had finished and we don't know where it operated to. 


[Thanks to Les Hampton for much of this information; we hope to present more in due course]