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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 LondonMetroline and Stagecoach London. Other operators in London are London UnitedAbellio LondonTower Transit, Sullivan Buses, London SovereignQuality Line and CT Plus.

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.

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498

Stagecoach London Enviro400 MMC bodied Alexander Dennis E40Ds on Route 498

Journey on London Bus Route 498 - 10303 (YY15OYU)

Journey on London Bus Route 498 - 10303 (YY15OYU)

498 riding bus

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.

Historic classification

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 Servicesafter 1970)
400–499 "Country Area" south of the River Thames
500–699 Trolleybuses
701–799 Green Line Coaches
800–899 "Country Area" "New Towns" routes

Current classification

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.
700–899 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.

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