Leatherhead Garage RIPKingston 2009

Route 416

RF54 sits on the departure stop at Leatherhead Garage ready to set off for Box Hill Greenacres.  This modernised Green Line RF was downgraded to a bus in 1970 and was one of the last few London Country RFs, helping out at Leatherhead in 1977 due to a shortage of Bristols - one of which sits just out of shot.
Photo © Paul Redmond
Esher was one of those places on the outskirts of London served by both red and green RFs.  Representing the Country Area was Leatherhead's longstanding route 416, as well as Green Line routes 715/A.
Original RF route
ESHER, Oxshott, Leatherhead, Headley, BOX HILL or TADWORTH


On 22 March, the 416 will provide a regular service between Leatherhead Station and the event site at Sandown Park.  Timetable.
Not a Kingston busMain boarding points
Esher Sandown Park
Esher High Street
Leatherhead Station
Admittedly not an RF and not on a Kingston area route, but MB90 moved on from High Wycombe, where it is seen here in the company of an RP, and last saw service in 1977/8 from Leatherhead.  It will return to its old haunts and will be operating the 416 on 22 March.
Photo © Paul Redmond
Route history
After the war, the 416 operated between Esher and Leatherhead, with the 435 providing the link from Leatherhead to Tadworth (where it met the 406 and the 80A).  The 422 was introduced in 1948 or 1949 between Leatherhead and Box Hill Holiday Camp.  Sometime between 1957 and 1960, the 435 was withdrawn and replaced by an extension of the 416, running by a different road to serve RAF Headley Court and Headley Church.  Certain journeys ran to Box Hill rather than Tadworth.
In 1964, there was no 422 on Sunday and all Sunday journeys ran to Box Hill from Esher.  By summer 1966, the Sunday service ran only between Leatherhead Station and Box Hill, with the single bus working a 462 to Fetcham between each journey on the 416.
The modern equivalent is Sunray's 516, which covers part of the old 439 from Chart Downs via Dorking to Brockham, then climbs Pebblecombe Hill (which LT never did) to serve Box Hill and Headley en route to Leatherhead Station and Tesco, from where it follows the old 408 to Epsom.
(We're sorry not to have access to a full history of country routes - would anyone like to write one?)