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Saturday, 17 December 2011

Today's travels saw me end up at First London's Willesden Junction Depot in Harlesden. The garage is adjacent to the busy West Coast Mainline and currently operates flagship Route 18, along with Routes, 187,226,228,487 and N18. The Garage opened in 2003 following First's retention of the Route 18 with new 18m Mercedes Citaro Bendybuses. The opening of this garage allowed First to have more flexibility with their routes and routes 187,226,487,PR1 and PR2 all transferred from Alperton (ON) following the opening of this garage.
First London WM47400 DRZ 6181
Although this may count as another Garage visit for whom I must give credit to First for allowing me on their premises. The reason for me visiting here today was to view the Bus above.The new Bus is titled the 'Streetlite' and it is a joint venture between Mistral Coach Sales and Wrightbus. Announced in late 2010 the first of the Streetlites took to the road in early 2011. The Bus above was due to be delivered to First London's Lea Interchange Garage in July 2011, however due to ongoing problems with the transmissions systems the delivery of this vehicle was delayed. It was initially set to run on the Route 236 which would allow First to make a direct comparison between it and  the Dennis E200s. Should it had been delivered on time, the E200s currently on order for Routes such as the W15 may in fact have been Streetlites instead. The bus will now run on the 226 once Oyster and Wayfarer machines have been installed where it will provide a direct comparison between the E200s on the Route. Originally coded VN58200 strangely, it has now been re-coded VM47400 but still has an Irish registration for some reason....The 10.2m vehicle seats 31 people and weighs a whopping 8020KGS. However although it seats 31, the legroom is adequate enough for the majority of the public to sit comfortably, I say this being 6ft2 and having tested out every seat on the vehicle. I must say I do like this vehicle a lot, may I add that it would be a very welcome addition on London's streets. On the other hand, I was also informed that a WTA 10.2m E200 would be bought by First to allow the comparison between these two vehicles to be more accurate. Credit to First for allowing me on the premises and I have to stress that I had all safety gear including High Visibility Jacket (Hi-Vi) and I followed all garage safety procedures whilst on site. 

First London Streetlite interior 
First London Streetlite interior 
First London Streetlite interior 
First London DML44056 YX58 FPU

First Willesden Junction Garage Yard

First VN37939 BF60 VJN and VN37933 BF60 UVA

First London DML44055 YX58 FPT

Ex-First London EA11053 LK05 FCO

First London DML44054 YX58 FPO

First London DML41419

First London DML41420 LN51 DXD

First London VN37924 BF60 VJJ

First London WM47400 DRZ 6181
First London Streetlite interior

First London WM47400 DRZ 6181

Reactions:

9 comments:

  1. Are these likely to be in service soon? I'm planning long-overdue a trip up to the Capital early in 2012, and if they are likely to be running, then I'll take a break from Zone 1 and stroll up to Willesden - it is, after all, my old stamping ground from University days.

    Re - the Irish 'plates. Don't forget the Dart/Handybuses that used to operate from Willesden Junction (station, not depot!) on the PR1/PR2 that also carried Irish registrations throughout their London careers, and all the way through to their retirement and scrapping.

    We here in First Hants and Dorset finally got rid of the last of ours (all ex-London examples) a couple of years back, and I think we were all glad to see the back of them!

    Regards,

    Matt

    ReplyDelete
  2. Matt,

    I'll have to find out when this Bus enters service, should be very soon however, all it really needs is an Oyster machine and a Wayfarer machine.

    I remember those Handybuses, they were quite nippy, I used to ride them everyday on the Route 223

    Jay.

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  3. Matt,

    There is just the 1 single vehicle ... there is no 'they'

    Steve

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  4. Oi u were at my garage on the weekend lol

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  5. so when the streetlite buses enter service ,will they be the only buses on the route 226 or will enviro 200's still be running?

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  6. I really hope that these Streetlites out number the Enviro 200s, I really do not like the 200s very much, but this on the other hand looks excellent and I went on one today, and the ride is excellent, smooth and quiet. I can't wait to see more.

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  7. Their not bad buses at all!

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  8. The envrio 200's at this Depot are rubbish evan the ones on the 440 are better. But is the street title good?

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  9. I would of preferred to of had Streetlites on the W15, I don't like having mix of new & existing. My only worry about the Streetlites is they maybe hot in the summer as there are only 3 windows on the bus. Plus the side blind is to small and the front blind is a bit too far back like the Optare Solo SR. I hope First considers getting these buses when the 339 is retendered.

    ReplyDelete

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