Posted by: Gary Klaukka | May 7, 2009

On the buses

After moving from W3 to W2, I have become a bus commuter. For six months, I spent almost two hours every day traversing the Piccadilly line. My life became one big tube. After moving within range of the centre, I made the conscious decision to take the underground considerably less often. I prefer taking the bus because I get the feeling that I am actually living in a city, and not in a dark tunnel. Most often I take the 390 from Notting Hill Gate to Goodge Street. During this trip I see the picturesque edge of Hyde Park and the bustle of Oxford Street. As a seasonal sight, I get to see the progress being made on building a diagonal crossing across Oxford Circus. Most of all I like sitting in the front of the bus on the top deck and watching the city go by. It is very much like my very own slide show of London: constantly alive and changing.

Of course going on the buses is not always a trouble-free experience. This morning I was trying to travel from Notting Hill Gate to Westminster on the 148. The bus spent a conspicuously long time at Hyde Park Corner and all of a sudden the driver announced that the bus would be terminating at Victoria – short of its intended destination. This happens frustratingly often on London buses: I strongly suspect that when a bus is lagging behind from its intended schedule, the bus ‘control centre’ decides to turn the bus around earlier than at its terminus. Unfortunately this results in countless frustrated passengers not reaching their final destination. I ended up walking from Victoria to Westminster, which was more than doable, but deep down I was not entirely pleased that the bus had not taken me where it should have.

Should Transport for London change its policy on terminating buses along the route? Surely it would be more important to get passengers to their final destinations than keep the entire line’s schedules fully regulated?

On a bus in Marble Arch

On a bus in Marble Arch


  1. […] the buses, cont. I had previously talked about my frustration at London buses terminating before their intended destination, causing […]

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