Carshalton 2007

Notes on the buses operated - part 4


Carshalton saw nine single deckers in service, plus one visiting and one that didn't make it:


The bus that didn't make it was RF28, sadly involved in a hit and run accident before its planned service on the Gravesend 725 feeder service - which was cancelled as a result.  The bus hit the underside (yes, really) of a stolen car that had rolled in front of it - the car can be seen upside-down behind the bus.  Luckily no-one was hurt, but the car driver ran away, thus avoiding further injury.  A picture of RF28 in service on the 725 in happier times is here.


At Mitcham Cricketers


RF406 was delivered new to Sutton for the 213, which it continued to work until its first overhaul in 1957.  It then spent a long spell at Merton for the 200, followed by Bromley for the 227 and Leyton for the 236, where it was one of the last doorless buses in service.  Converted to one-man operation (and fitted with doors) in 1970, it went to Uxbridge where it stayed until withdrawal in 1976.


On 15 April 2007, RF406 was back at Sutton on its first route, the 213.

Photo © Matthew Mabey


RF returns


 Our RF486 was ably driven on the day by Claire Green, with conductor Jemma Stevens.  A history of the bus is here.


Having loaded a Belmont Station, RF486 heads up Downs Road for Carshalton Beeches and Sutton Garage.

Photo © Mark Lyons


151 briefly resurrected


RF 491 was a Central Area bus delivered in 1953. It began its career at Sidcup garage, and during its first 15 years was allocated to West Green, Dalston, Loughton, Norbiton, Edgware (replacing TD types) and New Cross garages.  In June 1966 it was converted to allow the driver to collect fares, by the installation of power doors (previously the entrance was open and the bus conductor operated). A luggage pen was also installed in place of two seats.  The vehicle finished its passenger carrying LT career at Croydon garage on route 234/A/B in 1972. It was then used as a training bus until 1977, when it was sold.


RF491 sets off from Wallington on the special working of the 213 to New Malden.

Photo © Peter Osborn


Green Line relief


BL49 was never based at Sutton, but similar buses operated the 80 and 80A, taking over from RFs in 1976.  BL49 entered service at Kingston in 1976, followed by service in various parts of London, finally at Highgate until 1990.  A long spell as a training bus followed (including at Westbourne Park garage, home of the 28 and 31 routes), until finally withdrawn in 1997.


BL49 sits in front of Sutton garage as it heads for Belmont on the 80A.
Photo © Bob Lear


Those well remembered Surrey Motors colours


GS42 is actually slightly newer than the RFs with registrations later in the MXX sequence, having been delivered in November 1953, entering service at Dorking.   After little more than a year, it disappeared north of the Thames, not to return to Dorking until 1966 for another couple of years.  Ian Smith reports: "the last scheduled ordinary GS public service was by London Country on 29 March 1972, on the 336A from Garston Garage, using regular GS42 plus spare GS33 (followed by an unscheduled 309 journey back to Garston from Rickmansworth)." (This brings to four the number of 'last buses' present at Carshalton - the two RTs, the RTW and the GS).  GS42 was then sold and entered preservation a year later.


GS42 was the surprise visitor, certainly as far as the organisers were concerned!  The bus arrived in Epsom dressed as a 481 (a very local route for the organisers) and proceeded to Sutton and Carshalton, where it is seen here with DM1052 behind.  You were very welcome.

Photo © Peter Larkham