The Anonymous Widower

I Finally Catch A New Bus for London in the Balls Pond Road

I only managed to catch it with a camera, as I had my shopping with me and was just going home.

A New Bus for London on Route 38

At least though they are not a figment of London’s imagination.

My last memory of it as it crossed towards Islington, was of the conductor balanced at the bottom of the back stairs, just like he would have been on an old Routemaster.

I should say, as I was taking the picture, I was approached by a well-dressed black guy about half my age, who’d just got off the bus.  He was truly enthusiastic about the bus.

So does good design appeal to everyone?

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March 6, 2012 - Posted by | Travel | , , , ,

2 Comments »

  1. Yes, pretty much. I took a trip on it last week and was amazed at the universal positive reactions from members of the public of all ages and creeds as the looked at it whirring by as well as my fellow passengers. It brought smiles to peoples faces and many raced to take a photo of it on their phones. I think the only ones who are trying hard to find fault have a vested interested in the project failing.

    Comment by AverageJoe | March 25, 2012 | Reply

    • I think you’re right in the last point. I posted on a left wing web site, that the bus is showing what can be done to mundane transport with good design and I got a positive response. I’ve travelled on some Reading buses with comfortable seats in fours and some on the Cambridge busway with leather seats and wi-fi. The New Bus for London is just another salvo in the design wars between the various manufacturers. The only winners will be the passengers, the environment and if the winners are Wright or Alexander Dennis, British workers.

      We live in interesting times.

      The only people, who are going to get the world out of the mess it’s in are scientists, engineers and designers. Some politicians might make the right decision, but name me one advisor to a major politician anywhere in the world, who is one of the three groups I listed. I suspect the only politician at present, who has them as advisors is Boris as he is lobbied by the engineers and others at TfL. A few years ago that would have applied to Ken. But then London Transport has a tradition of good engineering and design. I grew up in London in the 1950s and 1960s. Why were London’s buses and tube trains, so much better than those outside the capital? I remember Liverpool buses at the time and an Atlantean was no patch on a Routemaster And comparing BR trains to London Tubes was like comparing a bad Ford to a good Rover or Volswagen. The only exception was the InterCity 125, which was so well-designed and made, they can’t find a way of replacing them. And they were only a stopgap.

      Long live good design!

      Comment by AnonW | March 26, 2012 | Reply


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