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Tuesday, 29 December 2015

Bus services at Bluewater Shopping Centre



Bluewater is an out of town shopping centre located in Stone, Kent, England outside the M25 Orbital Motorway. It first opened on the 16th March 1999 which led to the extension of London Buses route 96 from Dartford going non-stop to Bluewater Shopping Centre.

According to London Bus Routes 'about' Route 96, it says “The 96 extension was actually introduced commercially by Stagecoach Selkent when the contract was let on net cost terms – an arrangement in which the operator keeps the revenue, and can therefore take commercial risks. This one clearly paid off even though the service level seemed excessive.”


Another advantage for Route 96 is that the route provides connection to the Docklands Light Railway which Woolwich Arsenal station first opened on 12th January 2009. So passengers from East London can travel by DLR to Woolwich where they can connect to the route 96 bus which goes to Bluewater Shopping Centre. The journey time taken on the route 96 bus varies between 40-77 minutes.

Departure board provided by Bluewater Shopping Centre
Interestingly, the Shopping Centre has its own bus information centre where passengers can find out information for the bus services. They also provide live departure monitors for the individual bus services.

Below is the table of bus services serving the Bluewater Shopping Centre; limited services are not shown on the table.

Route
From/To
Service/brand
Operated by
96
Bluewater – Dartford – Crayford – Bexleyheath – Welling – Plumstead – Woolwich
London Buses
Stagecoach Selkent
306/308
Gravesend - Meopham - Vigo - Borough Green - Sevenoaks

Arriva Kent Thameside
423/ 424/433
Dartford - Longfield - Hartley - New Ash Green

Arriva Kent Thameside
428
Bluewater - Darent Valley Hospital - Dartford - Crayford - Barnes Cray - Slade Green - Erith
London Buses
Arriva Kent Thameside
474/475
Greenhithe Station - Bluewater - Longfield

Arriva Kent Thameside
477
Bluewater - Darent Valley Hospital - Dartford - Wilmington - Hextable - Swanley - Crockenhill - St Mary Cray - Orpington

Arriva Kent Thameside
480
Riverview Park - Gravesend - Dartford
Sapphire
Arriva Kent Thameside
481
Bluewater - Northfleet - Gravesend - Riverview Park

Arriva Kent Thameside
490
Valley Drive - Gravesend - Bluewater - Dartford
Sapphire
Arriva Kent Thameside
492
Bluewater - Horns Cross - Dartford - Chastilian Road - Crayford - Mayplace Road - Bexleyheath - Bexley - North Cray - Foots Cray - Sidcup
London Buses
Arriva Kent Thameside
700
Chatham - Rochester - Strood - Earl Estate - Bluewater
Expressline
Arriva Kent & Surrey
A
Bluewater - Greenhithe - Temple Hill - Dartford
Fastrack
Arriva Kent Thameside
B
Gravesend - Greenhithe - Bluewater - Dartford - Temple Hill
Fastrack
Arriva Kent Thameside
X80
Bluewater - Greenhithe Station - Lakeside - Chafford Hundred

Ensign Bus

The routes with the red background are the ones served by London Buses. The table shows that three routes serve the Bluewater Shopping Centre.

You can view the map of the Kent Thameside area which shows bus services from Bluewater provided by Kent County Council. They also have a list of bus routes serving the Kent Thameside area as well.

Bus Times website also have a list of bus stops serving the Bluewater Shopping Centre which you can view here.

Below is a video of buses at Bluewater Bus Station which I filmed on 1st October 2015.

I have previously written about two bus services which also serve the Bluewater Shopping Centre.

And lastly, this is not to be confused with the Blue Water Area Transit bus company from Port Huron, Michigan, United States of America.

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