Welcome to the Bus Routes in London Wiki
Bus Routes in London Wiki is an information repository about The London Bus. The London Bus is one of London's principal icons, the archetypal red rear-entrance Routemaster being recognised worldwide. Although the Routemaster has now been largely phased out of service, with only two heritage routes still using the vehicles, the majority of buses in London are still red and therefore the red double-decker bus remains a widely recognised symbol of the city.
Transport for London (TfL) contracted bus routes in London, United Kingdom. The major operators in the London area are Go-Ahead London, Arriva London, Metroline and Stagecoach London. Other operators in London are London United, Abellio London, Tower Transit, Sullivan Buses, London Sovereign, Quality Line and CT Plus and UNO.
There are also several operators based outside London that run services either wholly or partly within the area. These services connect London with parts of Buckinghamshire, Essex, Hertfordshire, Berkshire, Kent, Surrey and Grays.
The information given here is a mixture of observations, timetable study and partly from some official information; it cannot be guaranteed 100% accurate and is given as a general guide only.
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Classification of route numbers
In Victorian times, passengers could only recognise the buses of different fleets and routes by the coaches' distinctive livery colours and line name, with painted signs on the sides showing the two termini to indicate the route. Then, in 1906, George Samuel Dicks of the London Motor Omnibus Company decided that, as the line name 'Vanguard' had proved to be very popular, he would name all lines 'Vanguard' and number the company's five different routes 1 through to 5. Other operators soon saw the advantage, in that a unique route number was easier for the travelling public to remember, and so the practice of using route numbers soon spread.
Historically, bus routes run by London Transport were grouped by the type of service that they provided.
The 1924 London Traffic Act imposed a numbering scheme known as the Bassom Scheme, named after Chief Constable A. E. Bassom of the Metropolitan Police who devised it. Variant and short workings used letter suffixes. The numbers reflected the company that operated the route.
The numbering was revised in 1934 after London Transport was formed:
|Route Number||Type of Service|
|1–199||"Central Area" red double-decker services|
|200–289||"Central Area" red single-decker services|
|290–299||"Central Area" night routes|
|300–399||"Country Area" north of the River Thames (rural services were operated by London Country Bus Services after 1970)|
|400–499||"Country Area" south of the River Thames|
|701–799||Green Line Coaches|
|800–899||"Country Area" "New Towns" routes|
|Route Number||Type of Service|
|1–599||Day routes, including 24-hour services.|
|600–699||Schoolday services, normally operating only one return journey per day. *|
|800-899||Not used for local bus services — numbers reserved for regional and national coach services.|
|900–999||Mobility Services, normally operating one returning journey per week.|
|N-prefixed routes||Night routes.|
|X-prefixed routes||Express routes.|
|Other letter-prefixed routes||Local day routes, including 24-hour services, with the letter(s) denoting the town the bus travels through.|
* Excluding route 607, which operates as a daily express route.