diamond geezer

 Thursday, July 15, 2010

GREEN LINE @80
X26: Heathrow - Croydon


X26 departing HeathrowWhile most Green Line coach routes from the company's heyday have long since bitten the dust, one sort-of survives as an ordinary red London bus. I say ordinary, but in truth the X26 is TfL's only orbital express. Boris promised to introduce more of these when he was trying to get elected as Mayor [see pages 3, 6, 11 and 20], but so far there's still only the one. The X26 is a truncated version of Green Line's 725, which looped south round the capital from Windsor to Gravesend [route history]. Pruned back gradually over the years, it now runs half-hourly for 21 miles between Heathrow and Croydon, which is pretty good going for a two quid bus fare. The Heathrow end is frequented by airport travellers with big suitcases, especially those overnighting somewhere cheap in south London. "How much Kingston Upon Tims?" they ask, whilst struggling to pay with unfamiliar coinage. By Hatton Cross the bus is rammed full, leaving some to take the alternative 285 which shadows the route but more slowly. The X26's on-board destination display isn't much use if you don't know where you're going. Is "Broad Street" in Kingston? Or is "Wood Street"? Guess wrong, and the express will take you miles past where you really want to go before there's another opportunity to alight. After Bentalls a more local clientèle boards, heading home from the mall to the suburban streets of Sutton. New Malden, Worcester Park and Cheam - each merits a stop, and only by the latter are any spare seats available. On leaving Wallington the next stop switches to "East Croydon station", where most remaining passengers wish to alight. First-time riders edge towards the doors with their baggage, then get to stand there for quarter of an hour while the bus creeps the long way into town. There are rare views across central Croydon from a viaduct no other bus gets to use, then finally the 90 minutes are up. It's not the speediest express in the world, but London could do with far more four-wheeled shortcuts like this. Go on Boris, you promised, how about it?


<< click for Newer posts

click for Older Posts >>


click to return to the main page


...or read more in my monthly archives
Jan17  Feb17  Mar17  Apr17  May17  Jun17  Jul17  Aug17
Jan16  Feb16  Mar16  Apr16  May16  Jun16  Jul16  Aug16  Sep16  Oct16  Nov16  Dec16
Jan15  Feb15  Mar15  Apr15  May15  Jun15  Jul15  Aug15  Sep15  Oct15  Nov15  Dec15
Jan14  Feb14  Mar14  Apr14  May14  Jun14  Jul14  Aug14  Sep14  Oct14  Nov14  Dec14
Jan13  Feb13  Mar13  Apr13  May13  Jun13  Jul13  Aug13  Sep13  Oct13  Nov13  Dec13
Jan12  Feb12  Mar12  Apr12  May12  Jun12  Jul12  Aug12  Sep12  Oct12  Nov12  Dec12
Jan11  Feb11  Mar11  Apr11  May11  Jun11  Jul11  Aug11  Sep11  Oct11  Nov11  Dec11
Jan10  Feb10  Mar10  Apr10  May10  Jun10  Jul10  Aug10  Sep10  Oct10  Nov10  Dec10 
Jan09  Feb09  Mar09  Apr09  May09  Jun09  Jul09  Aug09  Sep09  Oct09  Nov09  Dec09
Jan08  Feb08  Mar08  Apr08  May08  Jun08  Jul08  Aug08  Sep08  Oct08  Nov08  Dec08
Jan07  Feb07  Mar07  Apr07  May07  Jun07  Jul07  Aug07  Sep07  Oct07  Nov07  Dec07
Jan06  Feb06  Mar06  Apr06  May06  Jun06  Jul06  Aug06  Sep06  Oct06  Nov06  Dec06
Jan05  Feb05  Mar05  Apr05  May05  Jun05  Jul05  Aug05  Sep05  Oct05  Nov05  Dec05
Jan04  Feb04  Mar04  Apr04  May04  Jun04  Jul04  Aug04  Sep04  Oct04  Nov04  Dec04
Jan03  Feb03  Mar03  Apr03  May03  Jun03  Jul03  Aug03  Sep03  Oct03  Nov03  Dec03
 Jan02  Feb02  Mar02  Apr02  May02  Jun02  Jul02 Aug02  Sep02  Oct02  Nov02  Dec02 

eXTReMe Tracker
jack of diamonds
Life viewed from London E3

» email me
» follow me on twitter
» follow the blog on Twitter
» follow the blog on RSS

my flickr photostream