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Thursday, 7 June 2012

Arriva London Norwood Garage [N]

After all the stress of exams, we can finally say that we are back in full swing bringing you once again more exclusive content of London's bus Garages. Today it was Norwood Garage which is currently operated by Arriva London South. The Garage is one of the 5 garages that makes up the Arriva London South operation.

The Garage was opened in 1909 by the LGOC (London General Omnibus Company) running a few south London trunk routes and in 1951 it took over some of Festival of Britain services in order to help ease the strain on the nearby Norwood Tram Depot which was struggling to meet the demand at the time. However if we go back 25 years prior, we can note that in 1925 the garage was enlarged to cope with the increase in demand for the garage and little was known back then this would not be the first expansion of the garage. 

In 1981 the garage underwent a complete rebuild with all the buses and staff being temporarily transferred to the nearby Clapham Garage which had reopened not to long before this. The new Clapham Allocation lasted until 1984 when the rebuild of Norwood Garage was completed. The buses and staff were subsequently transferred back to their new modern garage.  The garage was formerly home to Leyland Olympians and Routemasters which were arguable some of London's best buses. The last of the Olympians were disposed of in 2003 following the retention of routes 2 and 176 with brand new ALX400 bodied Volvo B7TLs (VLA). However  Routemasters are still present on site along with a handful of DLAs which are now training buses. 

The garage was one of the garages that previously supplied the company with spare buses and drivers for the route 19 after its conversion from Routemaster operation to OPO (One Person Operation), the buses chosen were the nearly new VLAs in early 2005 whilst the route was awaiting its batch of Wright Gemini bodied DAF DB250 buses (DW). 

On the 8th of March 2008 the garage began running the newly tendered route 415 which runs from Tulse Hill Station to Elephant & Castle Station via Tulse Hill, Effra Road, Brixton town centre, Brixton Road, Oval Station and Kennington Park Road. The Garage enjoyed more success following the winning of route 133 in from London General using brand new Alexander Dennis Enviro 400s in a contract that commenced on the 23rd of January 2010. To counter this success the garage lost work to the hands of London General on the 31st of March 2012 in the form of route 249, however on the same day part of the Route 59 allocation was moved in here to help Brixton Garage (BN). The garage now holds 144 buses, and runs London bus routes 2, 59, 133, 415, 417, 432, 24-hour route 176, school route 690 and night routes N2 and N137.

A massive thanks goes out the Arriva London staff for allowing us on these premises after performing the relevant safety procedures and checks in order to ensure that our safety was paramount whilst on site. 

Arriva London T11 LJ59 LYO
Arriva London VLA26 LJ53 BCZ is seen in the pits at Norwood Garage
A line up of VLAs at Norwood Garage
Arriva London DLA331 LG52 DCO is seen parked up.
Beauty and the decide?
A line up of VLAs at Norwood Garage
Arriva London T136 LJ10 HUP is seen with a rather misted
blindbox following a rinse.
The southern corner of Norwood Garage

Old and new stand side by side
The long standing DLA26 S226 JUA is seen parked up in the forecourt of Norwood Garage,
this bus was relieved of its duties on London's streets just over a year ago to become a training vehicle.

2 DLAs and 2 Ts
A view of the Norwood Garage forecourt
Arriva London VLA66 LJ04 YWV
Arriva London T116 LJ59 LXS
Trainer DWL31 LF02 PMY
Arriva London VLA48 LJ53 BUA

Arriva London DLA167 W367 VGJ and DLA169 W369 VGJ
Arriva London VLA66 LJ04 YMV and VLA70 LJ04 YWZ

Arriva London DLA137 V337 DGT
Arriva London DLA172 W372 VGJ
Arriva London South

Key Facts to Note about Norwood Garage

  • Opened in 1909 by LGOC
  • Houses 144 vehicles at present
  • Formerly the head office for Arriva London South


at: Thursday, June 07, 2012 5:37:00 pm said...

Great write up :)BTW Beddington Farm was CN. BC is where Abellio's garage is :)

at: Thursday, June 07, 2012 11:26:00 pm said...

I don't think Norwood has ever been the Head Office for Arriva London South. I believe the Head Office was originally on London Road, just north of Thornton Heath pond (the building is still used by London Bus Services Ltd) and then the head office moved to TC.

Rhys says:
at: Friday, June 08, 2012 8:22:00 am said...

Anoymous, Norwood Garage did in fact used to be head of South London Operations before it was past to South Croydon Garage. Thornton Heath Garage has never been head office. Great post guys, interesting fact you may want to add in. Route 2 has operated from Norwood Garage throughout the garages life. (For 103 years)

at: Friday, June 08, 2012 11:50:00 pm said...


I did not say Thornton Heath Garage (TH) was the head office, I said there was an office NORTH of Thornton Heath Pond... See

And sorry, but I don't recall N ever being the head office, it certainly hasn't been on the legal lettering carried by the buses.

Also, see

Tom says:
at: Saturday, June 16, 2012 9:35:00 pm said...

Anonymous is right, it is a office just north of TH now used by TFL Emergency Response vans.

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