London Transport
Central Area Routes 125–129

Last updated 26-01-10.

1d London General ticket

A 1d punch ticket from the L. G. O. CO. LTD. & ASSOCIATED COS. for SERVICE 125, with stages from Pimlico to Becontree Heath. It probably dates from the early 1920s. ▶

In 1948 route 125 ran from Woodside Park (Clissbury Ring) to Southgate Station via Nether Street and North Finchley except during Monday to Friday peak hours when it only operated between Finchley and Southgate. In 1950 it was extended from North Finchley to Woodside Park at all times. The following year it was extended from Woodside Park to Golders Green Station via Lullington Garth and Hendon. In 1954 the route was extended from Southgate to Highlands Hospital via Winchmore Hill Road during Monday to Saturday peak hours and Saturday and Sunday afternoons. In 1958 Sunday service was withdrawn between Woodside Park and Golders Green, but extended from Southgate to Winchmore Hill (via Highlands Hospital). Two years later Sunday service was further withdrawn between North Finchley and Woodside Park. In January 1966 weekday evening and and Saturday journeys were withdrawn between North Finchley and Golders Green, and on Neaw Year’s Eve of the same year the Saturday service was diverted at Southgate to Oakwood and renumbered route 125A. In January 1971 Saturday service was reinstated and extended from Southgate to Winchmore Hill (Station Road) at all times, and the route was converted to single deck Swift one-person-operation. In April Monday to Friday service between North Finchley and Golders Green was withdrawn outside of peak hours. In 1975 Sunday service was converted to Daimler double-deck operation, followed by Monday to Saturday service in 1977. In 1978 the 125 was withdrawn between North Finchley and Golders Green. In 1979 Monday to Friday peak journeys were extended from North Finchley to Hendon (The Bell), but this extension lasted only until 1982. In 1986 Sunday service was extended from Winchmore Hill to Enfield Town. In 1990 Sunday journeys were rerouted to double run via Winchmore Hill Station Road. In 1991 the route was extended from North Finchley to Finchley Central Station via Ballards Lane over route 13. In February 1992 Sunday service was withdrawn between Winchmore Hill and Enfield Town, and in April the Finchley Central terminal was moved to Finchley (Hendon Lane).

Route 240 ran from Golders Green Station to Edgware Station via Hendon, Holders Hill Road, Bittacy Hill, The Ridgeway, Hammers Lane, Daws Lane, Mill Hill Broadway and Hale Lane. It was operated in two sections: the trunk from Golders Green to Mill Hill with RT double deckers from Cricklewood Garage [W], and the Mill Hill to Edgware section with single deck TDs from Edgware [EW]. In 1951 it was withdrawn beyond Mill Hill Broadway, the Edgware to Mill Hill section being transferred to route 240A. In 1966 the route was extended from Mill Hill to Edgware, replacing the withdrawn 240A. Other than the inevitable replacement of RTs by Routemasters and various other equipment variations, the route has remained unchanged for the past 43 years.

1971 route 125 & 240 leaflet
A leaflet from 1971 issued for the introduction of single-deck one-person-operated Swifts to the 125 and 240.
125 MON.-FRI. PEAK HOURS - 240
This split “E” plate must have come from the Golders Green or Hendon area where the 125 and 240 shared a common routeing. The 125 worked this section as “Monday to Friday Peak Hours” from April 1971, and thus gives a likely date for this plate.

126126The figures on the second “E” plate are slightly more elongated than normal.

Route 126 ran from Beckenham Junction Station to Eltham (Southend Crescent) via Wickham Road, Hayes Lane, Westmoreland Road, Bromley South, Burnt Ash Lane, Grove Park, Mottingham Road, Court Road and Eltham High Street. In 1951 it was extended from Eltham to Plumstead Common (Woodman) via Rochester Way, Hook Lane, Welling and Edison Road. In 1963 it was replaced by revised route 124 between Welling and Plumstead Common, and withdrawn Monday to Saturday between Eltham (Well Hall Station) and Plumstead Common. In 1968 the Sunday service was extended from Eltham to Bexleyheath Garage via Welling, but it was withdrawn in 1978, replaced by daily service on route 124. In 1985 the Monday to Saturday service was extended from Eltham to Woolwich (Thomas Street) via Well Hall Road and Shooters Hill Police, over route 161. In 1988 the evening service was withdrawn between Eltham and Woolwich. In 1989 the 126 was rerouted between Mottingham and Grove Park via Dunkery Road instead of Grove Park Road. It was also withdrawn between Eltham Church and Woolwich, but diverted instead via Eltham High Street to Southend Crescent except Monday to Saturday evenings and all day Sunday when it continued to terminate at Eltham Station. However, in 1990 all service was terminated at Eltham (Southend Crescent). In 1994 operation was transferred to Kentish Bus, and the section between Bromley South Station and Beckenham Junction was replaced by new route 162. In 2000 the Eltham terminus was moved to the High Street.

Route 127 was introduced in February 1941 between Orden Station and South Wimbledon Station via London Road, Stonecot Hill, North Cheam, Cheam Common Road, Worcester Park Station, Malden Road, New Malden, Shannon Corner, Bushey Road and Kingston Road. It ran daily (but had no service after 2100), and operated with low-height class D Daimlers due to low bridge at Worcester Park Station. In November the Sunday service was withdrawn. In 1953 the RLH type was introduced. In 1956 the Monday to Friday service was extended from South Wimbledon to St. Helier Avenue (Middleton Road) via South Wimbledon and Mordenhall Road to replace the withdrawn route 32, but the Saturday service was withdrawn between Raynes Park and South Wimbledon. In April 1958 the Saturday service was withdrawn, and four months later the Monday to Friday service followed.

In April 1961 a new route 127 was introduced as a replacement for trolleybus 627. It ran between Victoria (Wilton Road) and Waltham Cross via Trafalgar Square, Charing Cross Road, Tottenham Court Road, Camden Town, Holloway, Finsbury Park, Manor House, Tottenham, Edmonton, Lower Edmonton Station, Ponders End and Enfield Highway. The section between Lower Edmonton and Waltham Cross ran on Mondays to Saturdays only until 1966; however Sunday afternoon service was added between Lower Edmonton and Enfield Garage in 1964. The 127 was withdrawn between Tottenham Court Road and Victoria in 1968, and the route was withdrawn completely in 1970.

A new route 127 was introduced in April 1981 between Tooting Broadway and Wallington (Shotfield) via London Road, Mitcham, Cranmer Road, Mitcham Junction and Hackbridge. It was a replacement for the withdrawn southern section of route 77. In 1984 it was extended from Wallington to Purley Station via Woodcote Green, with garage journeys continuing on to Croydon Garage, and also diverted via Carshalton Station between Hackbridge and Wallington. A year later Monday to Friday peak hour journeys were extended from Purley to Selsdon via Riddlesdown and Sanderstead, replacing withdrawn route 234. In 1985 Monday to Saturday service was extended from Purley to Sandersead Church, and operation was awarded to London & Country. The following year some garage journeys were revised to run beyond Selsdon in service to Chelsham Garage via Old Farleigh Road, Sunnybank and Chelsham Road. In 1989 the Sunday 127A–running between Streatham Hill Station and Sanderstead Church via Mitcham Lane, Mitcham, Hackbridge, Carshalton Station, Wallington, Woodcote Road, Foxley Lane and Purley (with some journeys continuing on to Selsdon)–was renumbered 127, and the Chelsham Garage journeys were withdrawn. In 1990 Sunday service to Streatham was withdrawn, the route now service Tooting at all times. In 1993 the 127 was withdrawn between Purley and Selsdon, and in 1994 it was rerouted in Tooting via Southcroft Road instead of London Road. No more routing changes have occurred since, but the route has been variously operated by Londonlinks, Nostalgia Bus, London General (but further sub-contracted to Selkent), Blue Triangle, Mitcham Belle, Central Parking Services (trading as Centra), Metrobus and London General.

1986 route 127/127A timetable
◀ March 1986 timetable for route 127 (Mondays to Fridays) and 127A (Sundays). Green print was employed because at the time the routes were operated by LONDON COUNTRY on behalf of London Regional Transport.
These two “E” plates came from the section of route between Lower Edmonton and Waltham Cross during the 1961–1966 period. ▶
127 MON.-SAT.


Route 128 ran daily from Chase Farm Hospital to Lower Edmonton Station via Gordon Hill, Baker Street, Enfield Town and Church Street. Originally operated by STL-type buses from Enfield Garage [E], they were replaced by RTs in 1952. The route was unchanged until its replacement in June 1969 by new route W8.

On 3 September 1977 the number 128 was assigned to a new service for the London Borough of Hillingdon in the Uxbridge-Ruislip-Rickmansworth area. It was operated by dedicated Bristol BLs with "Hillingdon Local Service" fleetnames and equipped with green on yellow blinds. The route ran from Ruislip Station to Harefield Hospital via High Street, Bury Street, Ladygate Lane, Breakspear Road, Bury Street, Ducks Hill Road, Rickmansworth Road, Mount Vernon Hospital private roads, White Hill, Northwood Road, Breakspear Road, Rickmansworth Road and Hill End Road. Four trips per day ran to Harefield West via Park Lane. Another four Monday to Saturday journeys and two Sunday journeys diverted at Harefield to Rickmansworth Station via Rickmansworth Road, Harefield Road, Church Street, High Street, Rickmansworth and Station Road, returning via Rectory Road and Riverside Drive. One Monday to Friday return journey diverted in Ruislip via Sharps Lane, Hill Lane, Orchard Close, Westcote Rise, Southcote Rise, Hill Lane, and Sharps Lane. Garage journeys operated to Uxbridge Garage [UX] via Harefield High Street ,Church Hill, Harvil Road, Swakeleys Road, Park Road, Belmont Road and Bakers Road. In 1978 the route was revised in Rickmansworth: from Station Road, right into Homestead Road, to stand at the rear of the bay in Station Road, then returniing via Homestead Road, Rickmansworth By-pass, circling the station roundabout and back via Park Road, High Street, Church Street and to the line of route. In 1982 the "double running" journeys via Sharps Lane in Ruislip were rerouted to follow the normal route in Bury Street. In 1983 the daily service was extended from Ruislip to Uxbridge via Ickenham, Western Avenue, Park Road, and Sunday pm service ran from Harefield Hospital to Uxbridge or Ruislip. In 1986 the service between Ruislip Station and Uxbridge Station via Long Lane, Western Avenue, Park Road and Harefield Road and withdrawn. Sunday journeys were extended from Ruislip Station to Uxbridge Station via Swakeleys Road and Ickenham over route 223, and school journeys were extended from Rickmansworth Station to Uxbridge Station via Mill End, Maple Cross and Denham. In 1987 Sunday service was withdrawn, replaced by new route 128A. Trips serving Maple Cross were rerouted via Chalfont Road, Hornhill Road and Woodlands Road instead of Denham Way, and the garage journeys between Uxbridge Station and Harefield via Harvil Road were withdrawn, replaced by additional Monday to Friday garage journeys via Maple Cross. The Monday to Friday service via Harefield West was reduced to afternoons only. The following year the BLs were replaced by Leyland Nationals (LS class), which were in turn supplemented by class LX Leyland Lynxs a year later. The 128 was also rerouted at Mount Vernon Hospital via Rickmansworth Road, Batchworth Heath Road and White Hill instead of the hospital grounds in 1989. The route was withdrawn on 17 August 1991.

The 128 reappeared in 1993—long after the use of enamel “E” plates had been discontinued—as a replacement for route 129 between Romford and Becontree Heath, operating Monday to Saturday between Romford Station and Ilford (Roden Street) via Roneo Corner, Rush Green Road, Becontree Heath, Goodmayes and Green Lane. In 1997 Sunday service was introduced. In 2004 it was extended from Ilford to Claybury Broadway via Gants Hill and Barkingside, replacing the withdrawn 129.

Andrew Colebourne sent along this picture, and wrote, “It was taken [15.10.77] soon after the introduction of the Hillingdon 128. Note that the ‘E’ plate for the route is yellow on green (as is the lettering on the blinds), whereas the one shown is white on green; hence, I suspect it is a later version. The green and yellow theme was taken through to the seat moquette on these vehicles (other BLs having the standard blue and green moquette of the period). Also of interest is the route 114 “E2” plate, although the legend requiring the larger size has been covered over. I suspect it was to do with journeys to Ruislip Lido.”
This plate is especially unusual as green “E” plates normally signified Green Line services. In this case green was used to match the colour of the destination blinds. ▶

1976 route 129 leaflet◀ A leaflet distributed in August 1976 to familiarize travellers with the soon-to-be-introduced one-person-operated DMS-type Daimler double-deckers.

Route 129 ran from Claybury Broadway to Ilford Station via Clayhall Avenue, Barkingside and Gants Hill. During the 1950s its operation switched back and forth among RT, RTW and RTL type buses. In 1958 Sunday afternoon service was extended from Ilford to Little Heath via Seven Kings and Barley Lane, replacing withdrawn route 25A. In 1963 two Sunday afternoon journeys were further extended from Little Heath via York Road to Chadwell Heath Hospital. In January 1965 the Monday to Saturday service was extended from Ilford to Barking via Green Lane, South Park Drive and Longbridge Road, and the Sunday service was re-numbered 129A. Nine months later the route was withdrawn between Ilford and Barking, being replaced by new one-person-operated route 291. In 1967 the 129 was reinstated daily between Claybury Broadway and Ilford Station, replacing the withdrawn 129A. In 1968 the Sunday service was again withdrawn, and the Clayhall Avenue section was replaced by new route 169C. In 1976 Sunday service was again re-introduced at the same time as the route was converted to one-person-operated DMS buses. In 1977 Monday to Saturday service was extended to Becontree Heath via Green Lane and Goodmayes. Next year Sunday service was once more withdrawn. Two years later Leyland Titans replaced the DMSs. In 1985 westbound journeys to Claybury Broadway were rerouted direct via Clayhall Avenue. In 1987 Monday to Friday peak hours journeys were introduced to Dagenham (Fords Works) via Dagenham East and Ballards Lane. In 1989 route 129 was extended during weeekday days and Saturday shopping hours to Romford (St. Edwards Way) via Rush Green Road. In May 1992 single-deck RNs replaced the Titans, but the Titans returned just five months later when the Fords Works journeys were withdrawn and the 129 was extended in Romford from Market to Parkside Hotel. In 1993 Sunday service was re-introduced and one Monday to Friday a.m. journey was routed to the Fords Works. In 1997 operation was transferred to Harris Bus, but in 2000 the route passed to East Thames Buses following Harris’ demise. In April 2001 the Fords Works journey was cut back to Dagenham (New Road), however just seven weeks later the up journey was withdrawn, and in December the Dagenham extension was withdrawn completely. In 2004 route 129 was replaced by a revised route 128.

Route 129A was a Sunday-only service introduced 1 February 1965 between Claybury Broadway and Ilford Station via Barkingside and Gants Hill. Afternoon journeys were extended via Seven Kings and Little Heath to Chadwell Heath Hospital when the Monday to Saturday 129 was extended from Ilford via South Park to Barking. (Route 129 had been extended on Sunday afternoons to Little Heath from 30 November 1958 as part replacement for route 25A, and further extended to Chadwell Heath Hospital on 12 May 1963. The service east of Ilford was very limited and most of the Little Heath runs worked to and from Ilford Broadway only). Although the 129 extension was short-lived, the Sunday service retained the 129A number until it was withdrawn east of Ilford without replacement and the 129 reinstated daily between Claybury Broadway and Ilford Station from 1 January 1967.

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