Thursday, 7 October 2021

Harold Would But He Couldn't (3)

 Any Chance Of A Timetable?

fbb will be improving his map of the Harold Wood area in due course but must offer grovelling gratitude to the noble work of Mike Harris. When London Transport announced that they were no longer producing their excellent pocket map of the whole red bus network, Mike took it over and has continued to update it ever since.
Mike only charges £1 for a download - which is a real bargain for the likes of fbb. So he ordered the latest edition which duly arrived overnight. Here is the Harold Wood area.
Young Mike also does historic maps in he same style, so here is Harold Wood in 1939 ...
... with fbb's 1946 version looking much the same. Roll on to 1964 and housing is splurging somewhat.
Note that Harold Wood Hospital is now marked, opposite the station. And here is a 174 at Noak Hill Pentowan ...
Pentyowan Farm is still on Church Road but fbb cannot discover whether there was a separate Pentowan.
So thanks to the wonderful Mike, we have a map. But Harold would really like a timetable - and he stands no chance from Transport for London. There is an argument that timetables are unnecessary when routes are as frequent as they are in London.

But, how frequent is frequent? 

And however frequent a bus route may be, it is often desirable (even necessary) to know how long your journey will be, say to interchange with a train. For this a timetable is ideal and far more use than a journey planner because you get a clear indication of all options - maybe to go for an earlier bus and have a coffee at the station.

In steps Robert Munster who keeps a full and up-to-date set of red bus timetables - or as up-to-date as present circumstances allow.

So here we go - in numerical order using colours similar to those on fbb's map.

This is the most frequent route in the area, running every 7 minutes on Monday to Friday. It terminates at Dagnam Park Square ...
... where 174s seem to have a superfluity of layover time!

Today's terminus at Noak Hill is no longer The Pentowan, but an estate road called Tees Drive.
The 254 is joined here by the ...

Can't match the colour via Google's limited palette.
At Noak Hill we really are at the edge of the Great Metropolis. Beyond Tees Drive is real countryside!

The 374 is a bit of an oddity. It runs via the official turn-round at Tesco Gallows Corner as not yet shown on the fbb map. (Which is why you need maps AND timetables to find your way around!)
Is the 374 the least frequent six days a week bus service operated for Transport for London?
That's it! Four journeys each way Monday to Saturday; currently in the hands of Arriva.
And so to a little block of four hundred numbers.

The 496 actually terminates at Harold Wood station, just along Station Road.
It has followed a circuitous route filling geographical gaps between other more frequent services ...
... but still manages a generous 15 minute frequency.

We will leave the 497 until tomorrow!

In essence the 498 runs straight along the A12 to Brentwood ...
... every 20 minutes; where it terminates in its own little bus-only nibble just outside the store's car park.
Of course, Brentford is not in london, but over the border in *ss*x - where be dragons! The Bull, by the way, which sounds like a town centre hostelry, is somewhat out of town near where buses leave/join the A12 by pass.
And finally (at last we hear our readers cry!); well, those that are still awake, that is!

This little fellow actually terminates at Gallows Corner Tesco ...
... having arrived from Becontree Heath and Romford.
This must be one of the most extensively tabulated routes in the TfL oeuvre, with a massive 15 point times. In 2002 it was extended from being Becontree Heath to Romford to continue on its roundabout way to Tesco at Gallows Corner.

But Harold would like to know more about the 497 as featured in a recent Roger French blog. In a convoluted way, the 497 (Harold Wood's newest route) links many of the areas we have explored so far.

 Next Harold Would Wood blog : Friday 8th October 

1 comment:

  1. 498: oh dear, BrentWOOD is in Essex, not BrentFORD !!!