Trivia: Oldest route number still in use

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Ken H

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I got a 1936 West Yorkshire Road Car Ltd timetable the other day.
I was pleased to see that the 36 (Leeds - Harrogate - Ripon) and 24 (Harrogate - Pateley Bridge) were there, and they are still in use (OK the 24 only goes to pateley now. It used to go to Lofthouse, further up the Nidd valley)

I wondered if these were the oldest route number still in use.

But on the Ribble facebook group, i was told the 555 was in use in 1925, even though only kendal - keswick then.

So can we push the use of these route numbers further back in time, and are there other route numbers still in use that have a long continuous use.

One other contender may be the leeds City Transport 1 to Lawnswood, still running today. But leeds tram numbers were not routes, but destinations. So trams running into Leeds would have showed a different number indicating where it was going after the city centre (I am told 2 - Moortown). So does that count??
 
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Snow1964

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London route 11 ?

Route 11 started in 1906, but routing has changed few times and no longer goes to Hammersmith

I think 24 is longest in current form
Hampstead Heath - Victoria in 1910, extended to Pimlico in 1912
so about 109 years doing Hampstead to Pimlico
 
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Robertj21a

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Route 11 started in 1906, but routing has changed few times and no longer goes to Hammersmith

I think 24 is longest in current form
Hampstead Heath - Victoria in 1910, extended to Pimlico in 1912
so about 109 years doing Hampstead to Pimlico
The question was about the oldest route number still in use, nothing to do with routing or termini.
 

Simon75

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Some ex Crosville
K38 Crewe to Macclesfield predate 1986, although now its Arriva 38
 

JamesC357

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Rayleigh to Shoeburyness Route 1 celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2019, with one of Arriva’s E400MMCs (6499, SN66 WHS) being painted into a heritage Southend Transport livery to commemorate this.
2 years later the route is still going strong.
 

Flange Squeal

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A number of former Aldershot & District route numbers (latterly Alder Valley in National Bus Company days) still survive, most (if not all) dating from as far back as the post-war period, indeed if not before:
  • 13: Alton - Kingsley - Bordon - Liphook
    (now Stagecoach South)
  • 19: Aldershot - Farnham - Frensham - Churt - Hindhead - Haslemere
    (now Stagecoach South)
  • 28: Guildford - Worplesdon - Pirbright - Brookwood - Knaphill - Woking
    (now Falcon Buses)
  • 34: Guildford - Woking - Knaphill - Bisley - Lightwater - Bagshot - Camberley
    (now Arriva Kent & Surrey)
Aldershot - Ash - Normandy - Guildford route 20 (Stagecoach South) was also doing quite well. I can find reference of the route and number back to Aldershot & District days in 1930, so it may even go back as far as the 1920s. Sadly it lost it's historic number for 'KITE' in 2015, although I think it may also have been '220' for a period after the merger of Aldershot & District and Thames Valley into 'Alder Valley'. Therefore I guess there was a break for a while between circa 1930 and 2015 (even if relatively short in the grand scheme of things!).

Today, Stagecoach South also run a 1 between Aldershot - North Camp - Farnborough - Frimley - Camberley. Historically, the Aldershot & District Traction Company also ran a 1 covering this same stretch (and extending further north), however there was a fairly long period of I think at least 2/3 decades where it wasn't numbered the 1, so I guess this doesn't count but is more a coincidence. The current '1' only came about in around 2003 when Stagecoach simplified their 'Blackwater Valley' network around Aldershot, Farnborough and Camberley, with new low route numbers used to replace an array of mixed and varied numbers of what was a fairly unnecessarily complex network.
 

daodao

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Manchester bus routes 17, 41, 53 and 59 date back to at least the 1920s and the days of the first generation tramways. Former tram routes 26 and 29 were renumbered as routes 216 and 219 in the 1950s when they were operated by trolleybuses; on Ashton New Road it is nearly a full circle with the re-opening of a tram line along it.

Cardiff bus routes 23 and 24 to Whitchurch/Llandaff date back to the 1920s.

So trams running into Leeds would have showed a different number indicating where it was going after the city centre (I am told 2 - Moortown). So does that count??
The number of the clockwise Street Lane circular route (2) in Leeds dates back to at least 1931.
 
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Busaholic

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London bus route 24 has been running between Hampstead Heath, South End Green and Pimlico, Grosvenor Road since 1912, essentially via the same roads.
 

A0wen

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There are a couple in Herts which date to the early days of LT and possibly further back than that:

310 Hertford - Cheshunt
308 Hertford - Cuffley
321 Luton - Watford
 

Strathclyder

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First Glasgow's Route 61 (presently running between Summerston in the north-west and Sandyhills in the east) goes back to the 'Corpie' days and survived both the Overground & SimpliCITY eras with minor alterations/extentions at either end. It replaced tram route no. 29 in October 1961, so will be 60 years old this October coming.
 

daodao

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263 Manchester to Altrincham
Incorrect. This number dates from after the formation of SELNEC, when many routes in Greater Manchester had prefixes added so that every route in the new "county" was unique. Thus it is relatively recent compared with others in Manchester such as 41 or 53, which date from the days of Manchester's first generation trams, and did not have prefixes added. It was originally 47, and subsequently 63 after the 40 series of numbers was allocated to Wilmslow Road services in 1967. At that time (pre-SELNEC), route 41 was diverted/extended to run to Sale rather than Southern Cemetery in lieu of limited stop route 50, and this number is still extant.
 
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SCH117X

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Just to return to the original post what became the 24 from Harrogate to Pateley Bridge originally commenced operating on 15/8/1924 and hopefully the service will last to see its 100th anniversary; Transdev having publicly stated that the service is a loss maker but they continue running it as they know its importance to Nidderdale.
 

Ken H

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Just to return to the original post what became the 24 from Harrogate to Pateley Bridge originally commenced operating on 15/8/1924 and hopefully the service will last to see its 100th anniversary; Transdev having publicly stated that the service is a loss maker but they continue running it as they know its importance to Nidderdale.
Was the 36 (Leeds - Harrogte - Ripon) numbered as 36 the same date?
 

SCH117X

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Harrogate & District Road Car did not use service numbers and after it became West Yorkshire Road Car in 1928 as a result of merging with Blythe & Berwick of Bradford it took until 1936 for service numbers to be introduced. What became the 36 originally had operated as two separate services with United sharing the Harrogate-Ripon service. The through Ripon-Leeds service was then shared with United until the mid 1990s acquisition by Blazefield of United's Ripon depot.
 

Ken H

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Harrogate & District Road Car did not use service numbers and after it became West Yorkshire Road Car in 1928 as a result of merging with Blythe & Berwick of Bradford it took until 1936 for service numbers to be introduced. What became the 36 originally had operated as two separate services with United sharing the Harrogate-Ripon service. The through Ripon-Leeds service was then shared with United until the mid 1990s acquisition by Blazefield of United's Ripon depot.
Both 36 and 24 in 1936 WYRCC timetable.

Mind you, quite a lot of minor services were un-numbered.
 

Bus Lightyear

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First Glasgow's Route 61 (presently running between Summerston in the north-west and Sandyhills in the east) goes back to the 'Corpie' days and survived both the Overground & SimpliCITY eras with minor alterations/extentions at either end. It replaced tram route no. 29 in October 1961, so will be 60 years old this October coming.
The 61 is a good shout but I can also remember it extending to Motherwell following deregulation in the late 80s and again from November 1997 until September 1998.

The service 5 (Castlemilk - Glasgow) has largely provided the same route since the 60s except it ran via Castlemilk Road and Menock Road until 1999 when it was rerouted via Croftfoot Rooundabout to replace the 5A. In the early 90s a small number of journeys continued beyond Castlemilk to East Kilbride but this didn't last long.

Service 46 has operated from Castlemilk to Parkhead since the 60s but the route between Parkhead and Easterhouse has changed a number of times. Pre First days there were alternate trips to Craigend and 46As to Stobhill Hospital.

The 240 (ex Central SMT) has largely been the same from Glasgow to Wishaw since the 60s with varying terminal points beyond such as Coltness, Carluke and Lanark.
 

gc4946

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Birmingham's Outer Circle 11. During the 1970s renumbered 11A/11C because of passengers catching the bus and going the wrong way!
 

Strathclyder

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The 61 is a good shout but I can also remember it extending to Motherwell following deregulation in the late 80s and again from November 1997 until September 1998.

The service 5 (Castlemilk - Glasgow) has largely provided the same route since the 60s except it ran via Castlemilk Road and Menock Road until 1999 when it was rerouted via Croftfoot Rooundabout to replace the 5A. In the early 90s a small number of journeys continued beyond Castlemilk to East Kilbride but this didn't last long.

Service 46 has operated from Castlemilk to Parkhead since the 60s but the route between Parkhead and Easterhouse has changed a number of times. Pre First days there were alternate trips to Craigend and 46As to Stobhill Hospital.

The 240 (ex Central SMT) has largely been the same from Glasgow to Wishaw since the 60s with varying terminal points beyond such as Coltness, Carluke and Lanark.
The 5 and 240 are other good shouts; had no idea the 61 was extended all the way out to Motherwell in the late 80s (given the madness that was dereg, I shouldn't be too surprised lol). Wonder why it was extended out that way again in that brief period in the late 90s though.
 

6Gman

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Some ex Crosville
K38 Crewe to Macclesfield predate 1986, although now its Arriva 38
It won't be anything Crosville since their alpha-numeric only started c.1958

And has pretty much vanished now.
 

asw22

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Aside from 36 Leeds to Harrogate and Ripon, the Leeds to Bradford route became 72 in the mid 1930s.
Leeds routes 1, 2 and 16 seem to have been around a long time (since 1950s?)
 

Ridercross

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Birmingham route 1 gained this number in 1916 when it ran City - Five Ways - Moseley - Sparkhill.

Still runs most of the same route as todays NXWM 1 Five Ways - Moseley - Sparkhill - Acocks Green.
 

jp4712

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It won't be anything Crosville since their alpha-numeric only started c.1958

And has pretty much vanished now.
And in any case, until 1972 it was North Western Road Car Company service 24 (double deck!).
 
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