London Buses route 156
|Vehicle||Alexander Dennis Enviro400 10.1m|
|Peak vehicle requirement||16|
|Night-time||Night Bus N87|
|End||Vauxhall bus station|
|Length||7 miles (11 km)|
|Journey time||33-62 minutes|
|Operates||05:30 - 01:00|
Route 156 commenced operating on 23 April 1983 between Morden station and Clapham Junction. It was introduced as a replacement for sections of route 77A (now 87) and M1 which were withdrawn at the same time. Route 156 was operated from Merton garage by Daimler Fleetlines.
On 3 August 1985, route 156 had been extended from Clapham Junction to Vauxhall station (weekday peaks only). In July 1987 the Monday to Saturday service between Raynes Park and Morden was withdrawn and replaced by new route 163. The route was Monday to Saturday Raynes Park to Clapham Junction, weekday peaks Raynes Park to Vauxhall station and Sundays Morden to Clapham Junction. Monday to Saturday allocation was transferred to Stockwell garage.
Two years on, the Merton garage Sunday service was transferred to Stockwell. By March 1991 the Sunday operation had returned to Merton. MCW Metrobuses were introduced to route 156 at the same time. In May 1991 the allocation was back at Merton full-time, and was operated by DRs. The route was withdrawn between Clapham Junction and Vauxhall and between Wimbledon and Morden to operate only from Clapham Junction to Wimbledon.
Upon being tendered, the route passed to Limebourne Buses on 13 September 1997. However, the collapse of its parent Q-Drive in late 1998 saw the route come under threat. It was operated free of charge by London Regional Transport for ten days using hired buses. Limebourne restarted operation as an independent company in December 1998 and took over operation of the service again.
The route was operated by Battersea garage and the double decker school journey was being operated by Nostalgia Bus. In April 1999 the school journey double decker was transferred to Limebourne. In July 2001 Limebourne were taken over by Connex, who continued to operate it using many of the same buses. A year later Connex converted the 156 to double deck using Alexander ALX400 bodied Dennis Trident 2s.
Consultation on a possible extension from Clapham Junction to Vauxhall began in April 2002, and received support from local politicians. The extension was implemented in October 2002, with the operation extended to begin an hour earlier and end an hour later.
Route 156 was included in the sale of Connex to Travel London in February 2004 which in turn was sold to Abellio London in May 2009. Before the sale, Travel London had already successfully bid to retain the route with a new contract commencing on 12 September 2009.
Route 156 operates via these primary locations:
- Wimbledon Sir Cyril Black Way
- Wimbledon station
- Wimbledon Park
- Southfields Community College
- Wandsworth Town Hall
- Clapham Junction station
- Queenstown Road station
- Battersea Park station
- Battersea Dogs and Cats Home
- Nine Elms
- Vauxhall bus station for Vauxhall station
- Route 156 Buses at Work
- Free bus rides bonus on 156 Wandsworth Guardian 12 December 1998
- Route 156 London Bus Routes 7 May 2010
- Optare Excels: Travel London, Limebourne, Connex Ian's Bus Stop
- Support bus plans Wandsworth Guardian 19 April 2002
- Life's easier on the buses Wandsworth Guardian 7 October 2002
- National Express buys 200 London buses The Telegraph 27 February 2004
- National Express Group plc agreement to sell Travel London National Express Group 21 May 2009
- NedRailways acquisition reinforces long term commitment to UK transport market NedRailways 9 June 2009
- Route 156 Map Transport for London