Route 213 and 200 RF anniversary

Sunday 2 December 2012


Event page retained for reference
RF379 on the 213 loads a crowd of schoolboys at Sutton Post Office.  Although looking new, the bus has already had fitted the extra handrail across the front window.  Assiduous readers will have spotted that the 213 did not usually operate along Grove Road, as this was before the introduction of Sutton's one-way system and Cheam Road was two way.  Obviously there was a temporary diversion, hence the dolly-stop.
Photo © Alan Cross
December 2012 marks 60 years since the first RF ran from Sutton Garage on route 213 on 12 December 1952.  Introduction from Norbiton started five days later, but it wasn't until 20 January 1953 that all 32 buses newly allocated for the route were licensed.  Meanwhile, Merton had started operation of RFs on route 200 on 1 December 1952.
To mark the 60th anniversary of the arrival of the new buses, routes 213 and 200 will again see operation by RFs on Sunday 2 December 2012.
Buses will operate a free service on route 213 between Kingston Eden Street and Sutton Garage alongside the TfL service, serving all usual 213 stops.  Note that RFs will operate over the current route (as used by RTs on the 213A) and Coombe Lane will not be served.  A map of the route is shown by clicking here and entering 213. 
Two morning journeys will operate on route 200 between Coombe Lane Copse Hill and Wimbledon Station and return.  Journeys commence from Kingston via route 57 and upon return continue from Coombe Lane to Malden and Sutton via route 213.
Histories of the routes are here for the 213 and here for the 200.
The planned timetable is here
RFs will run on the 213 every 15 minutes, from 10.40am to 4.10pm from Sutton and from 11.30am (with earlier journeys) to 4.00pm from Kingston.  The TfL service runs as normal.
There will be two return journeys on the 200 in the morning only between Copse Hill and Wimbledon Station, extended inbound to run from Kingston and on the return to connect with the 213 at New Malden.  A feeder service will run from/to Lower Kingswood on route 80 (TIMING REVISED - see updated timetable).
Buses planned for operation
The following buses are planned for service.  References are to the running numbers shown on the timetable.  The usual caveats apply.

A 1



A 2



NB 3



A 4 (and AL 4)



NB 5 (and AL 5)



A 6



NB 8



NB 9


RF429 is unfit and will therefore not attend as planned.
The two buses working on route 200 were delivered new to Merton for that route.  RF395 was among those delivered new for route 213, as was the bus that is now RF366, which then spent its whole life in the Kingston area.  (Confused by LT's identity swapping? - read more here).  Most other buses spent time at either Sutton (A), Norbiton (NB) or Kingston (K) and have been allocated running numbers accordingly. 
Sutton Garage
The 213 terminates at Sutton Garage.  The last set-down stop is in Bushey Road; passengers are not carried into the garage, which is not open to the public.
Photographers may find the following locations suitable for photographs, depending on time of day:
  • Norbiton Railway Bridge, London Road 
  • Malden Road, Worcester Park
  • Cheam Common Road, North Cheam
  • Cheam Village 
  • Sutton Green

For the 200, Cottenham Park Road has some traditional background, but note our limited service on the route. 

Please watch for traffic and stay safe.


Status of services

These services are provided free of charge.  The operations are not part of the London Buses network and Transport for London has no responsibility for them. Use of bus stops is by agreement with TfL on this basis. Drivers are required to comply with all instructions given by authorised officials of TfL and London Buses on the use of bus stops and bus stands. In the event of any difficulties affecting London bus services, be aware that drivers may be required immediately to vacate bus stops and stands.  Sutton Garage is not open to the public.


The buses are elderly, are privately owned and are operated and maintained at their owners' expense. Please respect this and do not bring food or drink onto buses.  All services run and carry passengers subject to the discretion of crews and passengers travel at their own risk.  Please take care when entering and leaving vehicles.


The first batch of RFs delivered to Muswell Hill for the 210 were moved on within weeks, to provide trainers for other garages shortly to introduce the type.  RF292 was one of them, seen here at the 200 stand at Wimbledon Police Station, two days before the operation fo the first RF on the the route.
Photo © Alan B Cross