The London Bus Page In Exile

Thursday 18 January 2007

C1 Extended with E200Darts

Filed under: Service Changes, Vehicles — londonbuspageinexile @ 7:56 pm

Travel London Dennis Dart SLF DP 13 (BX54 DLZ) and Alexander Dennis Enviro200Dart ES 2 (LJ56 VST) at Victoria, Saturday 13th January 2007 On 6th January the C1 was extended from Kensington High Street to Shepherd’s Bush, receiving six new Enviro200Darts to accompany the change.
The C1 was very nearly withdrawn entirely at one point, but has survived to find itself on the front line of forthcoming Congestion Charge expansion, which is expected to funnel more people onto the route (irrespective of a postponed change that would have taken it down Blythe Road in Holland Park rather than up the main drag; this may still happen).
Twenty years ago the C1 started as a bit of a gimmick, introducing minibuses to London streets some time after provincial operators had figured they were good for not only increasing penetration of narrower streets, but for freezing wage costs. The Volkswagen-based Optare Citypacers then used were undeniably cute, with their executive-minicoach ambience and subtle piped music (classical!), but they were too flimsy for the capital and were replaced very quickly – first by SRs, then followed Metroriders and Darts, and when the tender was lost to Connex, Optare Solos stepped up. Today’s operator, Travel London, has just taken six Enviro200Darts to accompany the existing Mini Pointer Darts that supplanted the Solos, and a chance shot at Victoria on 13th January sees DP 13 (BX54 DLZ), a bus normally on the P13, joined by one of the brand new E200s, ES 2 (LJ56 VST). I’m not sold on the Enviro200Dart – it’s unadventurous and bland, without the dash of the Dart, but orders are beginning to pick up even if companies you’d expect to buy it sight unseen are now beginning to dabble in other chassis (Metroline taking MANs, for example). Travel London have also got some of the longer version for the 152 (don’t ask me what the chassis designations, if any, are – it’s hard enough juggling all the SFD-etc business that came with their predecessors!), while on the other side of town Selkent have also put a handful of the shortest version into service on the 273, which they regained last Saturday after several years with First.



  1. Little about the Enviro 200’s Bodies on Travel London & Selkent buses, the chassis on routes C1, 152 {Travel London) & 273 (Selkent), all these are on the Alexander Dennis Enviro200 Dart Chassis. Rich. PS, Great to see your website back. keep up good work.

    Comment by Richard — Friday 19 January 2007 @ 8:27 pm

  2. hi mate
    blythe rd is not in holland park,its w14 west kensington

    Comment by ollie — Friday 19 January 2007 @ 9:12 pm

  3. I’ve only just found you – so let me belatedly add my congratulations to the others on your return, Matt.

    I like the blog format too – hopefully this will be a congenial place to discuss not only buses, but also routes, which as a resident in the Congestion Charge Western Extension I’m more interested in at the moment.

    I was going to make these remarks on the “route 452” thread, but I hope they’ll be acceptable here, since they’re of wider application.

    I certainly agree with the comments made there about the inability of TfL to listen – it’s basically an extremely sick organisational culture – for example, computer consultants who have done projects for them have told me they couldn’t wait for the job to be finished. I also suspect that it basically sees itself as a railway operator who is burdened with bothersome buses as well.

    One thing we can do, probably more effectively if we’re involved in pressure groups than as individuals, is to lobby GLA members and borough councillors to get more involved in ensuring that our buses go where and when we want them to.

    I believe both the GLA and the boroughs have to produce an annual transport planning document; would it be unreasonable for the boroughs, at least, to have to comment on the adequacy of services in their area, with suggestions for improvements; and for the G.L.A. to be required to respond to those comments?

    Comment by Innocent Abroad — Saturday 20 January 2007 @ 10:08 am

  4. Can I say that these buses are wonderful, nice and smooth, plenty of space. more of these buses are needed to phase out the old ALX200 range, with Arriva London North, there ALX200’s are just to old now for the route 78, they are using the pointers for the 173 on the 78 and in ture the rubbish is being used in the 173, message for Arriva London @ Barking, buy new buses for the 173 & 78.

    Comment by MARK MATTHEWS — Tuesday 19 June 2007 @ 11:50 am

  5. #4 What’s the point, TfL don’t care for once! Wait until the contract is renwed. In London bus operators aren’t fighting to get passengers either.

    Comment by Arriva436 — Tuesday 19 June 2007 @ 3:02 pm

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