London Buses route 266 is a Transport for London contracted bus route in London, England. Running between Hammersmith and Brent Cross, it is operated by Metroline.
Route 266 commenced operation on 3 January 1962 between Edgware and Hammersmith bus stations via Burnt Oak, Colindale, Cricklewood, Willesden, Harlesden and Acton. The was operated from Cricklewood (W) and Stonebridge (SE) garages using AEC Routemasters. The route was introduced as a replacement for trolleybus route 666.
In 1966, the Sunday Stonebridge (SE) allocation was withdrawn.
In 1968, the Monday to Saturday Stonebridge (SE) allocation was transferred to Willesden (AC) garage and Sunday Stonebridge (SE) allocation was reintroduced.
On 13 June 1970, the Monday to Friday service was withdrawn between West Hendon and Edgware except for peak journeys to Colindale. The Saturday and Sunday service was withdrawn between Cricklewood Garage and Edgware Station at the same time.
In 1972, the Monday to Saturday Willesden (AC) allocation was transferred to Riverside (R) garage.
From 31 January 1976, the weekday daytime service was diverted to Brent Cross Shopping Centre.
On 28 October 1978, the peak hour service was extended to Mill Hill Broadway station and the Monday to Saturday Riverside (R) allocation was withdrawn and the Sunday Willesden (AC) allocation was withdrawn.
In 1979, crew operated Daimler Fleetlines were introduced.
On 25 April 1981, route 266 was withdrawn between Staples Corner and Mill Hill Broadway station with most services diverted to Brent Cross bus station.
In August 1981, Stonebridge (SE) was announced closed and the crew operated Daimler Fleetlines were withdrawn.
In 1982, the Willesden (AC) allocation and Riverside (R) allocation were withdrawn.
On 2 February 1982, crew operated MCW Metrobuses were introduced and a daily Willesden (AC) allocation was reintroduced.
On 2 November 1985, it was converted to one man operation with MCW Metrobuses.
In 1990, the Cricklewood (W) allocation was introduced.
On 14 October 1995, all services were extended to Brent Cross, except for late evening services.
In June 1998, part of the allocation was transferred to Cricklewood (W) garage.
In December 1998, the Willesden (AC) allocation was transferred to Cricklewood (W) garage.
On 23 September 2000, the allocation was transferred to Harlesden (HR) garages.
In 2001, the MCW Metrobuses were replaced by Alexander RH bodied Volvo Olympians.
On 26 July 2003, the route was extended to Brent Cross at all times.
On 17 April 2004, the route was converted into a 24-hour service and Harlesden (HR) garage was renamed Park Royal (PR) garage.
On 21 May 2005, the route was retained by Metroline and was converted to low floor operation using brand new low floor Alexander ALX400 bodied Dennis Tridents. The allocation was transferred to Cricklewood (W) garages at the same time.
On 16 February 2008, the route was extended to Hammersmith Lower Bus Station.
On 19 May 2012, the route passed to First London operating from their Atlas Road (AS) garage using brand new Wright Eclipse Gemini 2 bodied Volvo B9TLs.
In April 2016, Wright Gemini 2 bodied VDL DB300s were introduced alongside the existing Wright Eclipse Gemini 2 bodied Volvo B9TLs.
On 1 July 2017, the allocation was transferred to Westbourne Park (X) garage.
On 29 July 2017, the route passed back to Metroline on a two year non-extendable contract operating from their Cricklewood (W) using Alexander Dennis Enviro 400s.
On 1 September 2018, Alexander Dennis Enviro 400Hs were introduced alongside the existing Alexander Dennis Enviro 400s.
The route will be withdrawn between Acton Old Town Hall and Hammersmith Bus Station. This section will be replaced by new routes 218 and 306 to coincide with the opening of the Western section of the new Elizabeth line from December 2019. At the same time, the night service will be renumbered N266.
The route will pass to London United and will be operated from their Park Royal (RP) garage from 7 December 2019.
Route 266 operates via these primary locations:
- Hammersmith Lower Bus Station
- Acton Vale
- Acton High Street
- Acton Mainline
- North Acton
- Willesden Junction
- Harlesden Jubilee Clock
- Willesden Bus Garage
- Willesden Green
- Cricklewood Broadway
- Cricklewood Bus Garage
- Staples Corner
- Brent Cross Shopping Centre Bus Station