15/07/2018

Potters Bar additions

In the early half of June 2018 Metroline took over two more routes that have been won from Go-Ahead (Northumberland Park) by using 100% recycled fleets. These are the 491 (from 02-June) and the 231 (from 09-June), and are now being run at Potters Bar garage.


Route 231
The 231 was originally won based on VW class but instead has been allocated E400 TEs with a mixture coming from service reductions at Holloway and Uxbridge, topped up with a few extra at Potters Bar.

Metroline TE1312 in Enfield, June 2018.
© Tommy Cooling

Metroline TE1308 in Enfield Chase, June 2018.
© Tommy Cooling

Route 491
The 491 has been allocated E200 DE class vehicles, a first at Potters Bar, in theory off the 46 & 274 following the theoretical conversions to electric and double deck respectively. In practice however the electrification of the 46 and decking of the 274 have been delayed due to TfL complications.
A number of DEs from King's Cross off the 274 service reduction (for deckers) have gone up to Potters Bar for the 491, but this has had to be topped up with shorter DEMs from Alperton, also made spare by service reductions there.

Metroline DE1332 at Silver Street, June 2018.
© Tommy Cooling

Metroline DE1332 in Edmonton, June 2018.
© Tommy Cooling
https://www.flickr.com/photos/127662272@N07/42134475004/in/dateposted/



Post by Tommy Cooling
Some of these images and more can be found on my Flickr page:
Please do not reproduce any of my images without permission

13/07/2018

All change in Hampstead, but nothing new

On Saturday 9th June, Routes 268, H2, H3 & 631 returned back to Metroline having spent over a decade based out at Arriva London's Garston in Hertfordshire, having been won by Arriva the Shires in 2006.


Route 268
Arriva ran Wrightbus Cadets over the route for most of its life however these were joined by E200 ENLs and Pointer darts PDLs in later years. Occasional rare workings of the Arriva OSs have been seen.

Arriva Cadet DWL89 at Swiss Cottage, February 2018
© Tommy Cooling
https://www.flickr.com/photos/127662272@N07/25609287597/in/dateposted/

The "new" Metroline service sees existing E200s used from recent frequency cuts off routes 187 and C11, and is being based at Cricklewood garage.

Metroline DEs ready for the 268 prior to the route transferring, May 2018
© Tommy Cooling
https://www.flickr.com/photos/127662272@N07/42451658401/in/dateposted/
Metroline DE1030 outside the Finchley Road O2 Centre, June 2018
© Tommy Cooling
https://www.flickr.com/photos/127662272@N07/28866157718/in/album-72157657904784250/
Metroline DE1015 on Route 268, Finchley Road O2 Centre
Metroline DE1015 having climbed the gradient up to the Finchley Road, June 2018.
© Aubrey
https://www.flickr.com/photos/wltmauc/43463882631/


Route H2

Arriva London OS71 at Meadway Gate on the H2 in the Hampstead Garden Suburb, June 2018.
© Tommy Cooling

As put in the photo caption, spot the difference! Due to on-going delays in getting the specially built 7.6m Optare Solo SRs, the existing Arriva fleet of Hampstead Solos have been hired in to continue the service. Interestingly the fleet names and numbers still retain those of the previous operator though company legals have been updated to show Metroline Travel. Each of the 5 OSs from Garston have "vehicle on hire to Metroline" cards visible in the front windscreen.

Spot the difference!
OS69 in Golders Green on the H2 whilst on hire to Metroline, July 2018.
© Tommy Cooling


Route H3/ 631
The H3, which is cross-linked with the 631 school route, originally numbered H1, requires 1 vehicle and only runs during Monday to Saturday shopping hours with one early morning journey.

A white Optare Solo SR demonstrator had been hired in from Ellenvale for type training and route learning at Metroline. Originally only on a two week hire, this has seemingly been extensively extended, and due to the on-going mechanical issues with the Arriva loanees, this demonstrator vehicle has been brought back and adapted for TfL service with an assault screen and Oyster reader fitted. As this is only due to be a temporary arrangement, presumably until schools break up, iBus equipment has not been fitted.

This vehicle also carries LED displays in a set up that will be similar to the vehicles on order so this has been a good exercise to test the LED displays ahead of the new vehicles arriving later on.

Ellenvale Optare Solo SR on hire to Metroline at Golders Green on the H3, July 2018.
© Tommy Cooling
https://www.flickr.com/photos/127662272@N07/42662371354

And the same vehicle having cross-linked at Golders Green onto the 631 school service, July 2018.
© Tommy Cooling
https://www.flickr.com/photos/127662272@N07/42662371394/in/photostream/

Desperate Measures
Prior to LED displays being programmed, it used A3 displays drawn up by Tommy, as seen in Golders Green. July 2018.
© Aubrey
https://www.flickr.com/photos/wltmauc/42633372624/in/dateposted/

Post by Tommy Cooling
Some of these images and more can be found on my Flickr page:
Please do not reproduce any of my images without permission

03/07/2018

Metroline Egyptians

In 2017 Metroline ordered 66 new vehicles for new contract on the 30, 31/N31 and 274. Towards the end of the year it was announced that the contract with Wrightbus had ended and instead a new Volvo contract was negotiated with MCV, the body in production being the eVoSeti. Examples of which in London can also be found with Go-Ahead and Tower Transit as well as with provincial operators outside of London.


Route 30
On Saturday 23rd June, the 30 passed from Tower Transit control (at Lea Interchange, LI) to Metroline at King's Cross (KC), using 25 brand new B5LH Volvo eVoSetis classed VMH.

VMH2468 at Warren Street heading west towards Marble Arch.
© Tommy Cooling
https://www.flickr.com/photos/127662272@N07/41196314630/in/dateposted/

VMH2479 at Marble Arch.
© Tommy Cooling
https://www.flickr.com/photos/127662272@N07/28261358817/in/photostream/


VMH2469 at Warren Street heading east towards Hackney Wick.
© Tommy Cooling
https://www.flickr.com/photos/127662272@N07/42436833754/in/photostream/


Route 274
On the same date as the 30, the 274's new contract also began, a Metroline retention. The award with deckers was the main surprise announcement from the electric single deck tender award last summer, but also suffering a drop in frequency as a result of the increased capacity. In true ironic fashion however, despite having over one year to prepare for decking a single deck route, offending trees in the vicinity of London Zoo that had previously prohibited double decks on the 274, had still been untouched with days before the conversion.

Normal fashion would be that previous workings would continue to be applied until the new deckers were allowed to run in service. However, with the 30 starting at King's Cross on the same day, using space originally part held by the 274 (before the frequency cut), and some former 274 drivers were also now used on the 30. So passengers have instead had to suffer with the same capacity restricting single decks, and a reduced frequency just when summer arrived. So much so that TfL have had to implement a very short term temporary 274 supplement service on the 274 using deckers spare from the 30s weekday allocation to provide extra capacity between Marble Arch and London Zoo at weekends only until the tree situation has been resolved.

VMH2462 working a temporary weekend only supplement service between Marble Arch and London Zoo.
© Tommy Cooling
https://www.flickr.com/photos/127662272@N07/28261358797/in/photostream/


Post by Tommy Cooling
Some of these images and more can be found on my Flickr page:
Please do not reproduce any of my images without permission