Wright SRM at the 2016 Imber Bus rally
Credit to KS LAB (KS Chow) on Flickr
First off, let me bring you up-to-date regarding the Electric Bus rollout in Central London.
Sunday 21 August
1) The first few of the BYD/ADL E200EV electric buses (SEe class) are now in London being prepared for use on routes 507 and 521, hopefully during the coming week. The intended fleet class code has been changed from EE to SEe (i.e. to link the Enviro200 class SE with e = electric, this being in lower case lettering –a ‘first’ for London). The two electric Irizars (EI 1 and 2) were last used on the ‘Red Arrows’ on 15th August prior to being moved to New Cross for intended use soon on route 108.
And the rest of the news:
2) The first of 22 StreetLites (batch SLS 1-22) for Arriva have arrived – all will have 66-regs and are due to take over during September on route 450, itself being moved from Thornton Heath to Norwood Garage on 27th August. A most unusual livery change is on Arriva HV64 (re-regd to WLT664), now in all-over ‘platinum’ (i.e. silver-grey) with side vinyls “to celebrate 1,000 award winning Arriva staff who support 160 charities through the payroll”. It should be used on route 141 in the coming week.
3) Abellio’s latest batch of new E40Hs (2534-2551) are now in service on route 344,albeit with some having had their registrations switched to be putof order. Meanwhile, in what is so far an unprecedented move, twenty Abellio 09-plate diesel Enviro400s are going off lease for re-sale via Ensign Bus. More of Metroline’s 77 new VWHs continued to arrive but thus far just ten are in service –all at Harrow Weald on routes 140 and 182.
Also from last week, an update on the New Routemasters which are going to enter service on route 253:
Sunday 14 August
1) Thus far 31 new VWHs have been delivered to Metroline for September, but just two have so far entered service at Harrow Weald, the rest in store at Perivale. All 12 DELs for the 487 and about a dozen LTs for the 189 also remain in store awaiting infrastructure changes. New LTs for Arriva route 253 began to be delivered last weekend and are in store at Edmonton. The swap of new VHs between London Sovereign route 13 and London United route 94 (x 13 of each) has now been effected.
In other news, the Volvo B5LH/Wright SRM (RATP Dev fleet no. VHR45203 Registration LJ16EXD) took part in the Imber Bus Rally which took place on 20th August 2016.
BBC News have written an article about the 2016 Imber Bus rally, featuring the SRM as the main image.
Also, at the Imber Bus Rally, a small number of 3 door 2 staircase hybrid buses called the New Routemaster were seen on London Vehicle Finder as they had their iBus turned on during the event.
Lastly, a brief update from TFL about their Night Tube service which first ran in the early hours of Saturday 20th August and Sunday 21st August.
Over 50,000 journeys completed on London's first Night Tube services
The first Night Tube services had a successful launch overnight as tens of thousands of passengers travelled on the Central and Victoria lines.
In all, 50,000 customer journeys were completed using the new Night Tube service, which will support thousands of jobs and boost the Capital's 24-hour economy.
One of the busiest stations was Oxford Circus which saw 6,500 people tapping in, while Stratford station saw 4,250 customers tapping out.
Night Tube will help Londoners get to work or home at night quickly safely and affordably, and will particularly benefit people working shifts early in the morning or late at night.
Night Tube services will cut late-night journey times by an average of 20 minutes, and in some cases by more than hour.
Tube demand has soared over recent years, with passenger numbers on Friday and Saturday nights up by around 70% since 2000, while demand for travel on night buses has risen by over 170% in the same period. Passenger data shows that more than 50% of people using night buses are going to or returning from work - many of whom will benefit directly from the Night Tube.
The Night Tube is expected to support around 2,000 permanent jobs in London's night-time economy, which will be boosted by around £77m a year. Over 500 of these jobs have been created directly through the operation of the service, with new part-time drivers, station staff, maintenance workers and service control staff employed and new BTP officers put on the network.
To meet the expected demand for Night Tube services, there will be six trains per hour through central London on all Night Tube lines between 00:30 and 05:30.
The Mayor is investing an extra £3.4 million towards policing for the Night Tube. This will see around 100 officers out on the network when full services are underway, with at least as many officers out during the night as would be seen during the day.
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