London Transport
Lettered Routes P–T


Last updated 22-01-10.


Route P1 was introduced in October 1968 to replace part of route 202, as a one-man-operated flat-fare single-deck route using MBSs. On Mondays to Saturdays it ran from New Cross (Clifton Rise) to South Bermondsey via Woodford Road, Trundleys Road and Surrey Docks, thence an anti-clockwise circular service via Galleywall Road, St. James’s Road and Rotherhithe New Road back to South Bermondsey and New Cross. On Sundays it ran from New Cross to Old Kent Road (Canal Bridge) via Trundleys Road, Surrey Docks and South Bermondsey. In 1971 the original MBS buses were replaced by SMS types. It has long since been withdrawn, and the area is presently serviced by routes 225 (Surrey Docks–New Cross) and 381.

Route P1 in 1970
Route P1 (Monday to Saturday and Sunday) in 1970.
Adapted from The Greater London Bus Map.
These two plates would have come from the few stops which were served only on Sundays (Rotherhithe New Road from Galleywall Road to the Canal Bridge terminus at St. James’s Road). They are especially interesting as the P is smaller than the number.
I can’t figure out where this “E” plate would have been posted, as the only Sunday-only section of the route was in Rotherhithe New Road! Perhaps the bus stand at the end of the route was in St. James’s Road and faced the opposite direction?

Route P2 in 1970
Route P2 in 1970. Adapted from The Greater London Bus Map.
This “E” plate would have come from the Surrey Docks Station area where the loops met, to indicate whch stop was for which direction. And the use of the singular is correct (note the chip below the A in ROAD), as the two images show that it’s not impossible to remove years of London grime with a little effort!
P1 & P2 leaflet
This booklet explained the new single-deck one-man-operated flat-fare routes that were introdced to the Rotherhithe and Surrey Docks area in October 1968.
1978 P2 timetable
June 1978 bus stop timetable for the P2.

The P2 was a flat-fare route replacing the 82 via Surrey Commercial Docks to Surrey Docks Station then covering part of route 202, the Rotherhithe New Road loop. The P2 has now long gone being (mostly) replaced by route P5 in October 1978 and then by route 381.

P3 leaflet

Route P3 was introduced in 1970 as a one-man-operated flat-fare double-deck route using XAs, replacing the 173 which ran as a circular route in both directions from Peckham Garage via Peckham Rye and Nunhead and back to Peckham. In subsequent years it was extended to London Bridge Station and has now disappeared, being replaced partly by today’s route 343.

Eight-page leaflet for the P3’s inauguration with flat fare XA-type buses on January 24th 1970.



Route P4 began operating in 1972 as a Monday to Saturday minibus route between Brixton Station and Brockley Rise via Loughborough Junction, North Dulwich, East Dulwich and Honor Oak Park. By 1984 the daytime service had been extended to Lewisham via Crofton Park, Brockley Grove and Ladywell.

1972 P4 leaflet

Route P5 was introduced in the 1970s. It now runs daily between Elephant & Castle and Nine Elms (Patmore Estate) via Walworth, Brandon Estate, Myatts Fields, Loughborough Park Estate, Brixton, Bedford Road, Clapham North and Stockwell.

It is very rare to find “E” plates for the P-prefix routes as they tended to be short routes with relatively few bus stops that carried them. Therefore, this one is astonishingly rare.



Route P11 was introduced in November 1988 as a minibus replacement of route 70. It ran from Waterloo Station to Peckham Garage via County Hall, York Road, Stamford Street, Southwark Street, London Bridge Station, Tooley Street, Jamaica Road, Rotherhithe, Salter Road, Redriff Road, Surrey Quays Station, Rotherhithe New Road, Raymouth Road, Southwark Park Road, St. James’s Road, Catlin Street, Rotherhithe New Road, Old Kent Road and Peckham Park Road. In 1991 the original StarRiders were replaced with DRL-type midibuses, which were then displaced by AV class double-deckers in 1995. At some point the terminal at Waterloo was changed to County Hall. The route was withdrawn in October 1999, when it was renumberd 381.

One of the 5" (126mm) square vinyl stickers that replaced enamel “E” plates.

Route P12 was introduced at the same time as the P11, in November 1988. It was a local circular service marketed as the Peckham hoppa,and ran to and from Peckham Garage via Rye Lane, Peckham Rye, Nunhead Lane, Evelina Road, Kimberley Avenue, Linden Grove, Ivydale Road, St. Asaph Road, Avignon Road, Frendsbury Road, St. Norbet Road, Mertinns Road, Ivydale Road, Linden Grove, Kimberley Avenue, Evelina Road, Nunhead Lane, Rye Lane and Peckham High Street. In 1989 service on the section along St. Asaph Road, Avignon Road, Frendsbury Road and St. Norbet Road was withdrawn, replaced by a revised routeing via Mertinns Road, Brenchley Gardens and Kelvington Road. In 1998 the StarRiders originally used were replaced by class DRL midibuses. In 1999 the route was “straightened out”, the original return loop beyond Ivydale Road back to Peckham Garage being replaced by an extension to Brockley Rise (Chandos) via Kelvington Road, Brenchley Gardens, Forest Hill Road and Honor Oak Park. In 2001 the P12 was converted to low-floor operation, and a year later it was rerouted between Ivydale Road and Honor Oak via Mertinns Road and the full length of Brenchley Gardens instead of via Ivydale and Kelvington Roads. In 2004 the route was extended from Peckham to Surrey Quays Shopping Centre via Queens Road, Asylum Road, Old Kent Road, Ilderton Road, Rotherhithe New Road, Catlin Street, St. James’s Road, Southwark Park Road, Rotherhithe, Canada Water Station and Surrey Quays Road.



Route P13 started in November 1988 as a Monday to Saturday minibus route, marketed as the Peckham hoppa, between Pepys Estate (Pepys Park) and Peckham Garage via Longshore, Bowditch, Grove Street, Plough Way, Surrey Quays Shopping Centre, South Bermondsey, Ilderton Road, Asylum Road and Queens Road. In 1991 it was withdrawn between Pepys Estate and Surrey Quays—this section replaced by new route 199—and rerouted between Galleywall Road and Surrey Quays via Southwark Park Road and Lower Road instead of Galleywall Road and Rotherhithe New Road. In 1994 the P13 was extended from Peckham to Forest Hill (Sydenham Rise), now running via Southwark Park Road, Ilderton Road, Asylum Road, Peckham, Peckham Rye Station, Blenheim Grove, Choumert Grove, Chadwick Road—returning along Chadwick Road, Lyndhurst Way, Holly Grove, and Bellenden Road—Bellenden Road, Avondale Rise, Malfort Road, Grove Hill Road, Dog Kennel Hill, a double run past the East Dulwich Sainsbury Superstore, and Lordship Lane, replacing part of withdrawn route P2. A year later the route was extended from Lordship Lane to Streatham Garage via Dulwich Common, Thurlow Park Road, Christchurch Road, Hillside Road, Downton Avenue, Streatham Hill and Streatham High Road, replacing part of the withdrawn 115. In January of the following year the routing was diverted between Dulwich Common and Goose Green via Upland Road, Underhill Road and Whately Road, this section operating as “hail and ride”, and six months later was further revised to run the full lenght of Underhill Road. In 1999 service was diverted via the new Canada Water Bus Station. In 2001 Sunday service was introduced, and the “hail and ride” section was converted to fixed stops. In 2004 the route was diverted at Old Kent Road to New Cross (Sainsbury’s), the withdrawn section replaced by a revised P12.

Route P14 was introduced in November 1988 as a new minibus service operated by Kentish Bus under LRT contract in conjunction with The London Docklands Developement Corporation. It ran Monday to Saturday from Surrey Docks Station to Isle of Dogs (District Centre) via Redriff Road, Salter Road, Brunel Road, Rotherhithe Tunnel, Limehouse, West India Dock Road, Marshwall and Limeharbour. Four months later it was extended from the Isle of Dogs to Cubitt Town (Queen Hotel) via East Ferry Road, Island Gardens and Manchester Road. In 1990 it was diverted between Surrey Docks Station and Rotherhithe Tunnel via Lower Road instead of Redriff Road, Salter Road and Brunel Road. In ’92 the route was withdrawn between Island Gardens and Cubitt Town and instead diverted back to Isle Of Dogs (City Pride, this time) via West Ferry Road. The same year operation was transferred to East London Buses, but after only 15 months London Central took over. East London reagined the P14 in 1995, but the entire service was discontinued in October 1999, leaving the Rotherhithe Tunnel unserved.


Route S1 was introduced in 1969 running daily as a circular service from Stratford via Upton Park and East Ham back to Stratford. It was a flat-fare route and replaced route 272, which was itself a trolleybus replacement route replacing routes 689 and 690. The S1 has long since been withdrawn and replaced by changes to other services.

Route S2 was introduced as a lettered flat-fare route in 1970 to replace route 208 which had been worked by crewed RFs. It ran daily between Clapton Pond and Bow (Seven Stars) via Urswick Road, Homerton, Hackney Wick, Victoria Park and Old Ford. In later years the S2 was extended to Bromley-by-Bow Station, and later further extended to Stratford bus station. It has also been extended at the other end to Clapton (Nightingale Road). The route has been withdrawn and replaced by routes 425 and 488.

Flat-fare buses ventured into Clapton and Bow beginning 18 April 1970 on new route S2.

1970 route S2 booklet
The S2 was a short route and largely served unique roads, so the use of “E” plates would have been limited to the few stops that it shared with other services. It is a rather uncommon plate nowadays.
The lettering on this “E” plate is in a bolder face than normal.
This is an astonishingly rare “E” plate, as it is particularly unusual to include the word TO.

The lettering on this “E” plate is somewhat uneven, suggesting that it may have been applied by hand.
This plate has been officially altered to show MON.-SAT. on a strip below the number, which had been added over whatever wording was there previously.
Route S3 booklet

Route S3 was introduced in 1971, running on Mondays to Saturdays from Stratford to Hackney Wick via Carpenters Road. It was later extended to Maryland. The S3 was a flat-fare route and replaced part of route 178 which was London’s last RLH low-height double-deck route. The 178 had run from Clapton Pond, but the new MBS vehicles on the S3 were too long to negotiate some of the roads on the old routeing. The S3 was not very successful and was replaced with an improved service on route 276 which provided more links. Since the S3 was a very short route only a few bus stops displayed “E” plates, so plates for this route are very uncommon. Of course, Carpenters Road has now been closed to traffic to allow building of the Olympic Park, and so most of the original 178 route and its replacement S3 have been obliterated from the map.

This leaflet was issued by London Transport to announce new route S3 to start on 17 April 1971 “with new-type buses”.
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