London Bus Route 140 Heritage Event (23/11/19)

Discussion in 'Buses & Coaches' started by goldenarrow, 8 Nov 2019.

  1. goldenarrow

    goldenarrow Member

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    December 7th 2019 heralds the end of an era for the 140 at Heathrow having served Heathrow Central since 1955.

    Saturday 23rd November will see at least 12 buses across the routes history operating a free service along the entire route with additional journeys to Mill Hill (a destination not directly served since 1983 when it went to the 114) and former long lost Sunday only route via Cherry Lane Cemetery and the M4 slip road.

    Services will generally operate every 20 mins between 10:30 and 16:30 with some short workings too.

    The preliminary timetable can be found here courtesy of Ref-rf.com.
     

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  3. Wirewiper

    Wirewiper Member

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    >>> December 7th 2019 heralds the end of an era for the 140 at Heathrow having served Heathrow Central since 1955. <<<

    The 140 is being cut back to operate between Harrow Weald and Hayes & Harlington Station. However I feel it only fair to point out that there will be a new limited stop X140 between Harrow and Heathrow Airport Central providing faster journeys for many current 140 passengers. There will also be a new route 278 which will operate between Ruislip and Heathrow Airport Central, providing useful new links and serving all the stops between Hayes and Heathrow Airport Central. The night service on route 140 will be renumbered N140 and will continue to serve all stops between Harrow Weald and Heathrow Airport.
     
  4. goldenarrow

    goldenarrow Member

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    An updated timetable with all vehicles now having the required papers to run on the day. An additional service has also been inputted.

    Just a note for those of you wishing to attend at Heathrow:

    Services will terminate/start at the former Stands 1-5 (now known as Chapel Lane) round the back of the station now only accessible from the pelican crossing by Stand 17.

    Subject to operating requirements, vehicles may be redirected to stable in the layover bays alongside regular services.

    Those layover stands are not publicly accessible and staff are obliged remove any unauthorised persons including carry throughs in line with operating guidelines.
     

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  5. Ianno87

    Ianno87 Established Member

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    The X140 could be a decent shout - Harrow is a decent bus connection for Heathrow coming off trains from Hemel, Milton Keynes etc. The problem is that the current 140 journey time makes it not very attractive. How much faster will the X140 be?

    Edit: Just done some research, and note it starts from Harrow Bus Station. Strikes me as a missed opportunity, but I presume there's rationale for it!
     
    Last edited: 13 Nov 2019
  6. goldenarrow

    goldenarrow Member

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    There are long term plans to scale back some of the duplicated sections especially around Harrow/Harrow Weald. I'd guess the X140 forms part of that with the H9/H10 due to move its terminus to Northwick Park Hospital. X140 blue blinds already have Harrow Weald fitted should demand at the northern end of the route prove viable to extend although in the current climate this looks unlikely.
     
    Last edited: 16 Nov 2019
  7. goldenarrow

    goldenarrow Member

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    An updated timetable and leaflet courtesy of Red-rf.com.
     

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  8. Seehof

    Seehof Member

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    Wow this forum is brilliant! I used to live in Bushey Heath and used the 140 from HD garage to LHR and before that from Mill Hill Broadway. Nothing like the smoky front seat of an RT!!!
    Sorry to see the change but things change whether we like it or not!
    Thanks to those who have posted info here
     
  9. goldenarrow

    goldenarrow Member

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    Last minute change of plan

    Heritage Route 140 buses will now start and terminate within the main apron of Heathrow Central Bus station. Buses will depart from Stand 19 alongside the regular route.

    Passengers wishing to do round trips should note that upon arrival at Heathrow, all passengers will be required to leave the bus at the drop off stands and rejoin the vehicle at Stand 19 when it re-enters service. Passengers cannot be carried over to the layover stands for safety reasons.

    Another common sense point but it is nonetheless important ask to refrain from using flash photography at moving vehicles. Those of you who know the layout at Heathrow will know how unforgiving the layout is and given that there are several pedestrian crossing points, any distractions to drivers can be unhelpful at best and downright dangerous at their worst.

    Other than that, we hope you enjoy what is in all likelihood the last heritage event to take place at Heathrow Central before the diggers move in.
     
    Last edited: 22 Nov 2019
  10. AlbertBeale

    AlbertBeale Member

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    Pleased to have noticed this thread - might even make it. The 140 was my bus to school every day for years in the '50s and '60s (from South Harrow to Northolt). In the days of Mill Hill to LHR, I think. Though didn't one of the South Harrow routes even go all the way up to Watford at one stage - was that the 140? I think it might have been - and at the time was the longest LT bus route?
     
  11. Wirewiper

    Wirewiper Member

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    The 158 ran from Watford Junction to Ruislip Lido until June 1966, when it swapped terminals with the 114 and was rerouted to Rayners Lane Station. The 158 was cut back to Harrow Weald in June 1970 and withdrawn completely in October 1971. The 114 originally ran between Edgware Station and Rayners Lane Station before being rerouted to Ruislip Lido. It too was cut back to Harrow Weald in June 1970 and was converted to one-man (sic) operation in October 1971.

    It was April 1983 before the 140 succumbed to driver-only operation, at the same time it was withdrawn between Harrow and Mill Hill Broadway and rerouted to Harrow Weald, swapping these sections with the 114 - which today bears little resemblance to the Edgware-Rayners Lane service it once was!

    The 158 to Watford Junction was originally replaced by the 182 which ran between Wembley (Empire Pool) and Watford Junction, but this was considered too long to run reliably and was cut back to Harrow Weald in October 1971, an overlapping route 258 being introduced between Harrow and Watford Junction.
     
  12. AlbertBeale

    AlbertBeale Member

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    Aha - yes, the 158 to Watford Junction, not the 140. Though perhaps the 140 was still the longest LT route at that time??

    I remember the day when the 114 and 158 swapped terminals (Ruislip Lido / Rayners Lane) in the '60s (though I would have guessed it was a bit earlier than '66). There were bus inspectors at the stops just south of South Harrow station, to help people get on the right bus (that would have been the last main place before the swap kicked in; although they both then turned right down Eastcote Lane rather than continuing along the main road, and I'm sure there must have been another bus stop before the route switch made any difference). Some of the bus drivers were still stopping at the wrong stop of the pair there (ie the one they'd always used for that route), and one of the inspectors was threatening to "lie down in front of" the next one that tried to do that. An exciting day in South Harrow!
     
  13. Busaholic

    Busaholic Established Member

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    Well, it was January 1966! Before then UX had a Sunday allocation on the 158 at times, though as I never travelled in the area on a Sunday I never saw one. Do you remember them?
     
  14. goldenarrow

    goldenarrow Member

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    Forgot to add that the last diagram from Heathrow Central has been cancelled. Last departure will be @16:15 for Mill Hill. Buses will continue to arrive at Heathrow Central until 17:30 from where they will finish service for the day.
     
  15. AlbertBeale

    AlbertBeale Member

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    I don't remember such details from 1966 now - though probably back in that era (and certainly a few years before) I'd have known my bus garage codes!

    What I do remember is how most local routes only had RTs but there were also RTLs (on the 187?) with different-sounding engines, and my mother was surprised that I knew what route a bus was from hearing it, before we'd got to the corner and it was in sight.
     
  16. Busaholic

    Busaholic Established Member

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    You'd have been experiencing the X buses on the 187, as opposed to the ON RTs. I knew from an extremely young age in Eltham when a 108A was climbing the hill from Well Hall Station, as opposed to the other seven or eight routes which were RT (with one RF.) Always loved that Leyland engine sound. Mind you, the sound of a tram coming up, which ended when I was four, was something else again!
     
  17. AlbertBeale

    AlbertBeale Member

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    Yes - maybe the North Ken Middle Row (X) 187s were the Leyland ones; the 140s were all RTs [all from harrow Weald garage, despite the length of the route?], which made the engine sound identification useful on the stretch where they were the (only) two routes - ie from Eastcote Lane in South Harrow up to the top of Petts Hill where the fire station is. I lived in a turning off that stretch for almost all of my school days. (I guess there were 187s from Alperton too - but weren't they Leylands as well?)

    A historical question about the buses around there - since there might be someone here who'd know. A lot of the housing west of the A312, between South Harrow and Harrow (ie roads off Roxeth Green Ave, and around Shaftesbury Circus) were "green fields" developments in the 1930s. I had relatives there, and we always had to walk there from South Harrow to visit them, because the buses all went on the main road to Harrow-on-the-Hill station, even though there was quite a stretch where almost no-one ever got on and off. Then suddenly someone had the bright idea of looping the bus routes between S Harrow and H/H (the 140, 114 and 158 at that stage) round via Shaftesbury Ave, Porlock Ave, Lascelles Ave - ie where lots of people actually lived. And very popular it was too (with the old folks especially, who wondered why it hadn't happened a lot sooner). Question - when was that routing change made? I'm guessing early-mid '60s?

    I caught some of the heritage outing today (despite engineering work on the underground messing up my plans). And I was especially pleased that the old buses weren't "just" RMs (which are often seen as our great heritage these days), but there was a load of RTs running. So we had the real 1950s and 1960s 140s - many thanks to whoever managed to get a good batch of RTs together for the day. The rear upstairs seats on the RTs have memories for me as pleasant as the rear upstairs seats on the RMs! (Question - I know that RMs started coming in during the '60s, but am I right that they didn't take over from RTs on suburban routes like the 140 until well through the '70s? And indeed, I guess the RMs out there were themselves superseded by OMO buses after not very long?)

    The southbound RT I was on from H/H today seemed to struggle slightly going up Petts Hill from Northolt Park station. Mind you, I remember when they were still new-ish buses, going up that hill to school one winter morning with a lot of snow around (late '50s ish), and the conductor pleading with people not to want to get off at the bus stop halfway up that hill if the bus was ever going to get moving again...

    Another RT I saw heading south (out of service) late this afternoon, when I was walking back to South Harrow, was making some very unhappy-sound clunking noises, and moving quite slowly. Did all the RTs survive the day OK?!
     
  18. Busaholic

    Busaholic Established Member

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    Lots of interesting observations there. I'll let someone (more local?) get to grips with some of them, but just answer a couple of the queries. No, the Alperton 187s would have been RT at that stage. The matter of Routemasters on the 140 and other Harrow Weald routes touches many raw nerves in L.T. circles! L.T. management proposed in the 1960s that HD's RTs would be replaced by RMs on a 7 RM for 8 RT basis, the justification being that a 64 seat bus could replace a 56 seat bus and provide the same number of seats per hour, The Transport and General Workers Union (in those days having considerable clout) were having none of it and threatened strike action. LT backed down and never attempted anything similar: instead, opo operation replaced RTs (and RLHs) in the main. It was said that LT 'punished' HD by waiting until a very late atage before introducing RMs to replace RTs on the 140, but I couldn't possibly comment! The 140 did get some long Routemasters (RMLs) on a Sunday in the 1970s in order to give Hendon (AE) some work on that day, with garage journeys working in service!
     
  19. MotCO

    MotCO Member

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    I seem to recall that the 140's kept their RTs for quite a while. I often wondered what overseas visitors arriving at Heathrow made of these old-fashioned looking (but fab) buses!
     
  20. MotCO

    MotCO Member

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    I used to live near the A3. When I was young, I remember always hearing an RT on the 152 going down the Kingston-by-Pass at about 9.00 each night as I was going to sleep! I could always differentiate its sound from all the other passing traffic.
     
  21. AlbertBeale

    AlbertBeale Member

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    By the way - on the RT I was on, on the 140 route today, since it stopped at all the normal stops the conductor on board would say to people, "free heritage buses on the 140 today" or something similar, but quite a few "normal" people were suspicious and waited and got on a normal 140 behind even though it cost them. [Did LT lose much money today over this??]

    Our conductor today had a Gibson, and went round giving everyone a ticket [as a memento of course, not for money!], and a few regular kids on the bus, who'd just hopped on the 140 to go a few stops in the normal course of their day, were nonplussed - by the bus, the tickets, everything. Someone tried to explain to them that this was once all normal, but it seemed beyond them... I was also told that some of the buses today had the old pre-Gibson hand-held ticket racks and the bell punch machines. Now that's what I call tickets! I had a lovely uncle who worked nights in a bus garage after the war (putting the ads up on the side of buses, in a garage open to the elements [Alperton in fact] where he got seriously ill running up and down a ladder all night with the icy fog and smog rolling into the garage; it finished him off in the end); he once liberated a spare(?) one of those old-style ticket racks to give to his favourite nephew; but I never had other than a toy bell punch to go with it!
     
  22. goldenarrow

    goldenarrow Member

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    Yes I would imagine they did. I was drafted in as Operations Supervisor at Heathrow for that day and most of the heritage runs were rammed with normal passengers easily outnumbering enthusiasts for most of the day. The regular 140 was incredibly light loaded even during the 2PM peak when the bulk of shift changes occur.

    It was nice to see workers and travellers bemusement when an RT/RM showed up, must have made a nice change from the monotony of the journeys they normally take.
     
  23. MotCO

    MotCO Member

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    I travelled on the 213 running day about 5 years ago when 8 RFs ran over the route from Kingston to Sutton alongside the usual buses. Joe Public was bemused / surprised at seeing old buses running, but youngsters had the opportunity to experience how it used to be. I wish there were more opportunities like this.

    On Sunday 8th December the annual Bromley mini - Running Day will take place with RFs running alongside the usual Streetlites on route 227 (Bromley North to Crystal Palace) (that will be quite a difference :D:D), plus some RTs and RMs on old route 94 (Lewisham - Petts Wood) and Duple Dart on route 162 (Beckenham to Chislehurst). Details here http://www.lots.org.uk/pdf/162 leaflet.pdf
     
    Last edited: 24 Nov 2019
  24. jumble

    jumble Member

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    This did not happen on all trips. Some came straight back
    However it was a brilliant day out as we used to get the 140 to Heathrow when we lived in Northolt
    Cherry tree cemetery was also nice as I have a good friend who is there
     
  25. AnthonyRail

    AnthonyRail Established Member

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    Disappointed to have missed this. Would be nice to see a Routemaster in London.
     
  26. 83G/84D

    83G/84D Established Member

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    Not too far from goongumpas treacle mine!
    Some of the bus events at Brooklands are worth a visit if you like the older London buses.
     
  27. jumble

    jumble Member

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    If you look at this website it should answer all your questions regarding routing

    https://www.londonbuses.co.uk/_routes/current/140.html

    Very interesting is the 24 route as I believe this is the only route that has never been changed from 1934 till the present time except for one way schemes
     
  28. AlbertBeale

    AlbertBeale Member

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    Hi - thanks for this useful link. Though as far as the 140 is concerned, this info doesn't make any explicit reference to when the routing between South Harrow station and Harrow-on-the-Hill station was changed to take it round where people lived (which is what I was wondering / trying to remember), whereas some other routing changes are noted. One of the timetables from the '50s shows the original route along the main road, then - despite several dates being given for minor changers in the '60s, the only one giving a full timetable which includes the routing is in 1968 (with the new "diverted" route shown). However, the notes don't suggest that that was one of the changes that happened on that date - and I think it must have taken effect earlier than that ... perhaps at the same time as one of the other '60s changes which are noted. But with no specific reference to that change, and many years' gap between the timetables shown which include the full routing, I'm still no nearer to pinning it down. (That's not to be other than grateful for the link you've provided!)

    Maybe there are others who know about these things who can put me out of my misery?
     
  29. 56 1/2

    56 1/2 Member

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    The UX allocation may have been short workings Ruislip Lido - Ruislip Station The lido was a major attraction in 50s 60s
     
  30. Wirewiper

    Wirewiper Member

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    The entry for 23rd January 1966 shows the 140 as operating via Porlock Avenue, so it appears to have been in force at least from that date, if not earlier.

    I also looked up the 114 and 158. The 114 was rerouted via Porlock Avenue from 23rd January 1957 until 23rd January 1966, when the 114 and 158 swapped routeings south of Harrow - the 114 took over the 158's route to Ruislip Lido and reverted to Bessborough Road, whilst the 158 was diverted via Porlock Avenue to terminate at Rayners Lane. When the 158 was withdrawn from 30th October 1971 the 114 (which converted to driver-only SMS operation from the same date) returned to Porlock Avenue.

    This left Bessborough Road unserved and there were calls for a service to be restored. London Transport's solution was to run a limited service of one bus per hour on route 114 via Bessborough Road instead of Porlock Avenue during Monday-Saturday daytimes, these journeys commencing from 18th November 1972. Buses operating these journeys carried distinctive black-on-yellow blinds. If I recall correctly it was only short journeys to and from Eastcote Lane that operated via Bessborough Road, I do not ever recall seeing a Ruislip Lido journey and I don't even know if black-on-yellow Ruislip Lido/Ruislip Station displays were ever produced. These journeys ended from 22nd April 1978 when route 258 was extended to South Harrow via Bessborough Road.
     
  31. Wirewiper

    Wirewiper Member

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    Indeed 23rd January 1966 was quite a big day for Harrow's buses - as well as the swap-round of the 114 and 158, and the rerouting of the 140 via Porlock Avenue, it was also the day that the 209 was extended to Northwick Park Station at peak times, replacing the short-lived 230A (Harrow Weald-Northwick Park) that had only started in October 1962. Although officially allocated RTs, an RLH would be used on the 230A from time to time.
     

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