You last heard about the 7 from me the day it lost its RMLs, 2nd July 2004, and since then it’s been just another anonymous OPO route with unremarkable Dennis Tridents like TNA 32952 (W952 ULL) – although one individual took it upon himself to deplete the route’s stock by setting fire to Westbourne Park garage, a crime for which he got no punishment whatsoever. However, it’s just been awarded to Metroline for takeup in June or July this year. OPO conversion had been introduced midway through its five-year contract, and to be fair it was almost one-manned at the start of it.
Metroline’s joy at winning such an important route caught swiftly in their throat with the news that they have lost the 24, one of the most important central London routes and one stocked with brand new vehicles; although not speculating about from which garage they could operate the 7 (none are within five miles of any point on the route!), Holloway will soon have some space! Still, there will be four or five months separating the 7 and 24 changeovers, not to mention that each contract bid specifies an operating garage, so we can worry about that when the time comes. The vehicles will comprise Scania N270UDs with East Lancs Olympus bodywork.