Thursday, 4 June 2015


Speculation that TfL would abandon the operation of real Routemasters when the current contract comes to an end in November are unfounded. The latest round of Transport for London bus route tender results issued on the 2nd June 2015, include a further contract to operate the 'heritage' element of route 15H (Tower Hill & Trafalgar Square). Stagecoach will continue to run the 'heritage' service with traditional Routemasters for another 5-years from the 14th November 2015. Stagecoach East London will also continue to use LT-class New Routemasters to operate the main 15 route (Trafalgar Square & Blackwall Station).

Since heritage route 9 ceased operating in July 2014 various displaced RM vehicles have been stored. Seven of the vehicles have now been disposed of by Transport for London.
The vehicles have been purchased by Henry Cooper Coaches who are based in Cramlington, Northumberland. The company previously dealt in surplus Routemasters when large numbers were retired from main line service in 2004/5. Six of the seven have been moved to the north east and one of them is already being prepared for MOT as it will initially join the Henry Cooper operational fleet.
The company already own RM 931 (MFF 580) which is restored to a high standard and is used for private hire work.

The vehicles sold to Henry Coopers are as follows

RM1204 204 CLT
RM1218 218 CLT
RM1562 562 CLT
RM1640 640 DYE
RM1735 735 DYE
RM1776 776 DYE
RM1913 ALD 913B

RM 1218 is being prepared for use by Henry Cooper Coaches. It is seen here, above and below, shortly after arrival in the north east.

As work continues to bring RM 1218 up to standard we will keep you informed of the progress. Further postings will follow in due course.